Humpback Whale Breath Hold – 6/11/19

How long can a Humpback Whale breath hold last for? The lung capacity of a Humpback Whale is the same size as a small car when they are fully grown. Such enormous lungs means that they are capable of saturating their blood with oxygen in a short amount of time and can prepare themselves for much longer downtimes unlike some other marine mammals. A Humpback Whale breath hold averages 5-10 minutes, the more relaxed a Humpback Whale is, the longer the breath hold. The longest recorded downtime in WA was 48 minutes long, thats almost one hour! Our first interaction today was fascinating as we sighted a whale just up ahead. Approaching the area all eyes scanned and soon a very dark shadow was sighted close to our bow.

The breath hold of this individual was enormous and we patiently waited and watched as the shadow slowly moved towards and then underneath us. Deciding it was best to let resting Humpbacks enjoy their time we departed our mysterious friend and gently approached a mother and her calf.

They were both very relaxed and on our approach a couple of very cute spy hops could be sighted as they checked us out.

The female was relaxed and happy for her calf to curiously keep an eye on us and we watched on as she taught her calf how to correctly wait for a large ship to move past.

The path was clear and now that the tanker was moving away they could continue on safely while making use of the handy sound footprint.

Our local Bottlenose Dolphins also ventured over to say hello and it was wonderful to spend some time in their company.

-Whale Watch Western Australia

This post was adapted from a blog, read the original here

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