Tag Archives: humpback whale

Humpback Whale Migration Guide

whale watching

After a summer of feeding on up to 4 tonnes of krill in nutrient-rich chilly Antarctic waters, more than 20,000 Humpback Whales migrate north to the sub-tropical waters of East Coast Australia. They head to the warm waters of the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef, to mate and give birth. The east coast migration is one of the longest migratory journeys of any mammal on Earth – up to 10,000 km round trip! Our Humpback Migration Guide will help you make the most of one of the most incredible shows on earth…

To get the full low down on the east coast migration, check out our online course. humpback whale

When to Watch the Humpback Migration

The exact timing of the humpback migration can vary slightly from year to year but generally the whales can be easily seen off the East Coast at the following times:

May – Aug             Migrating north (generally 5-10km from the coast)

Sept – Nov            Migrating back South (often with new-born calves)

This map highlights some of the best whale watching lookouts on the east coast.

Tip: The whales are normally easier to see migrating south as they tend to travel closer to shore, protecting their calves from predators.

 

Check out our humpback migration calendar for more details…

Humpback Migration Calendar

Time of Day whale tail

Morning – Calm morning waters make easy viewing, before the wind picks up.

Evening – Sunsets make for spectacular whale watching as the changing light highlights the action.

 

Where to Watch 

The humpback’s spectacular acrobatic displays are often easily observed from the beach or land-based lookouts – so everyone gets the chance to watch for free!!

 

 

Best Whale Watching on the Sunshine Coast whale watching

The best whale watching on the Sunshine Coast can be observed from…

  • Coolum: Point Perry or Point Arkwright, Coolum
  • Kawana: Point Cartwright
  • Moffat Beach Headland
  • Noosa: Hells Gate, Noosa National Park
  • Alexandra Headland

Queensland Whale Watching by Boat 

whale watchingOur favorite places to go whale watching by boat…

-Mooloolaba

-Hervey Bay: about a quarter of humpbacks enter Hervey Bay

-Whitsundays

-Great Barrier Reef

Best Whale Watching near Brisbane

In our opinion, the best whale watching near Brisbane is from…

  • North Stradbroke Island – Point Lookout

 

Whale Watching Tips Humpback eye

Here are our whale watching tips – to ensure you get the most from your experience

  • Be respectful and mindful – follow 100 meter distance regulations
  • Take binoculars
  • Take a copy of our Identifying Humpbacks guide so you know what you’re looking for
  • Get up high for a better view
  • Be patient
  • Get educated so you can impress your friends with the facts!

 

Don’t forget to look out for East Coast Australia’s most famous white humpback whale. It’s Aboriginal name is ‘Migaloo’ or ‘white fella’.

 

 

 

Why We Need Whales

Whales are essential to the marine eco-system and therefore to us. They help to keep our oceans healthy. As we get up to 70% of our oxygen from the sea, we need it to be healthy enough to produce that oxygen, else we humans can’t survive!

5 Ways You Can Protect Whales

  1. Educate yourself & your friends
  2. Whale watch with a responsible company & keep 100 metres away
  3. Report sick or injured animals
  4. Reduce plastic usage & do not litter
  5. Support a whale charity:

Whale & Dolphin Conservation
Marine Conservation
Sea Shepherd
Humpbacks & Highrises

 

 

humpback whale kids courseTo get educated about the humpback migration and why we need to protect whales, why not check out our online course for kids

 

 

 

amazing sharks kids courseInterested in other courses for kids? Check out our Amazing Sharks Course

Humpback Whale Kids Course

Woohoo!!! The humpbacks are coming up the coast, so we’re celebrating their arrival with an awesome new Humpback Whale Kids Course. 

 

humpback migration

 

More than 20,000 Humpback Whales migrate up the East Coast of Australia from May each year. It’s one of the longest migratory journeys of any mammal (up to 10,000km) and it’s free and easy to watch from the coast. So why not get the low down on the migration and get down to the ocean to experience what’s probably the greatest acrobatic show on earth!

 

 

 

Humpback Whale Kids Course Content

We’ve created awesome videos, images, fast facts, infographics, a whale watching guide, humpback ID chart, a migration calendar, maps, quizzes and more that will arm you with all you need to know about humpbacks.

 

 

 

Personalised Humpback Whale Certificate

marine biologistComplete the course and you will receive a personalised humpback whale certificate, awarded by our very own Head Marine Biologist, Richard Coward!

 

 

 

 

 

Whale Watching Guide

whale watchingOur whale watching guide includes everything you need to know about whale watching, including:

When & where to go whale watching

Humpback whale migration calendar

Best lookout points: QLD & NSW

Whale watching tips

Humpback identification chart

 

 

 

Humpback Videos

humpback & calfOur short humpback videos include amazing footage of humpbacks doing what they do best – breaching, slapping and  singing! so, we’ve added some lively music which we think goes pretty well with the whales – it’s big and bold too!!

 

 

 

 

 

 How to Protect Humpback Whales

We can all do our bit to help protect humpback whales, like…

Educate yourself & your friends

Whale watch with a responsible company & keep 100 metres away

Report sick or injured animals

Reduce plastic usage & do not litter

 

 

Support a whale conservation organisation…

Whale & Dolphin Conservation au.whales.org/

Marine Conservation marineconservation.org.au/whaling/

Sea Shepherd seashepherd.org.au/

Humpbacks & Highrises hhr.org.au/

 

humpback whaleHumpback Whale Migration Kids Online Mini Course

 

 

 

humpback teaching resources

Humpback Migration Teaching Resources

 

 

 

Humpback Whale Teaching Resources

Humpback Whale Migration

 

Each year, from May, around 50,000 Humpback Whales migrate from their feeding grounds in the chilly waters of the Antarctic, to warmer waters off Australia’s East and West Coast to birth and mate. The migration can easily be seen from the coast and the acrobatic whales make awesome viewing. So, we decided to create some inspirational humpback migration teaching resources to engage students and to celebrate the arrival of the whales!

 

HumpbackCurriculum Humpback Whale Teaching Resources

These image-based humpback whale teaching resources are designed to assist in teaching curriculum themes such as human impact, habitats, adaptation, and classification, using an iconic and topical subject. Resources include downloadable videos, infographics, fact sheets, maps, a migration calendar, presentation, activities and more.

 

Humpback Whale Topics Covered Humpback eye

  • Humpback Migration Route
  • Humpback Habitats
  • Humpback Fast Facts
  • Adaptations & Anatomy
  • Humpback Classification
  • Humpback v Toothed Whale & Food Webs
  • Humpback Reproduction
  • Why We Need Whales – The Whale Pump
  • Human Impact
  • How to Help Protect Whales

 

A Sample of our Humpback Whale Teaching Resources

Migration Route Map – detailing how the whales travel up the West & East Coast

 

Whale Food Webs

Food Webs – baleen versus toothed whales

 

 

The Whale Pump – how whales help us breath

 

 

Activity – The Plastic Ocean Cycle

 

 

Humpback Whale Videos

We have used impressive humpback whale videos featuring whales being whales! We put the videos to music that should bring a smile to student’s faces!

 

 

 

 

Educating Students to Protect

We believe that educating students is the best way to inspire them to want to protect the ocean and marine life. The resources pack closes with a section on how students can protect humpback whales.

 

 

5 Ways You Can Protect Humpback Whales

  1. Educate yourself & your friends
  2. Whale watch with a responsible company & keep 100 metres away
  3. Report sick or injured animals
  4. Reduce plastic usage & do not litter
  5. Support a whale charity:

 

Whale & Dolphin Conservation au.whales.org/

Marine Conservation marineconservation.org.au/whaling/

Sea Shepherd seashepherd.org.au/

Humpback & High Rises hhr.org.au/

 

Humpback Whale Teaching Resources

humpback whale

amazing sharks kids course

Annual Humpback Whale Migration – East Coast Australia

Each year between April and November, Australia’s eastern coastline comes alive with the spectacular acrobatic displays of humpback whales. After a summer of feeding on krill in Antarctic waters, these charismatic animals migrate north to sub-tropical waters where they mate and give birth. And we are lucky enough to be able to easily spot them on their travels from our majestic coastline!

During their annual migration of up to 10 000 kilometres, humpbacks can easily be seen off the coast of New South Wales and Queensland.

The exact timing of the migration period can vary from year to year depending on water temperature, sea ice, predation risk, prey abundance and the location of their feeding ground.

Humpback Migration Route and Timing

The majority of humpbacks in Australian waters migrate north from June to August, and back towards the Southern Ocean from September to November.

Migration Grouping

Groups of young males typically lead the migration while pregnant cows and cow-calf pairs bring up the rear. Adult breeding animals form the bulk of the migration in the middle stages.

Humpback Whale Facts

  • Humpback whale length: 12- 16 metres
  • Humpback whale weight: up to 50 tonnes or 6 elephants!
  • Average birth weight of humpback: 2 tonnes
  • Birth length: 4-5 metres
  • Humpback whale gestation period: 11 months
  • Favoured birth temperature: 22-25 degrees
  • Origin of Humpback Whale name: the name comes from their very long pectoral fins and knobby looking head which looks a bit like a hump!
  • Easily tracked as identifiable by the unique markings on their tail fluke – so we can learn lots about them!
  • Humpback whale travel speed: up to 8 km an hour
  • Migration travel speed: humpback average only 1.6km an hour during the migration as they rest and socialise along the way
  • Humpbacks sing songs that may be heard hundreds of kilometres away
  • East Coast Australia’s most famous humpback whale is white and has an Aboriginal name, ‘Migaloo’ which means white fella.

The humpback whale is not the largest whale found in Australian waters but we reckon its’ the most iconic.

Click here for our Eastern Humpback Whales Online Mini Course

Click here for our Humpback Whale Teaching Resources