Bubble-net feeding Humpback whales – Alaska 2023

Bubble-net feeding Humpback whales. Watching Humpback whales bubble-net feeding is one of nature’s most spectacular sighs. In the Keku Strait, South-east Alaska, we were treated to many instances of bubble-net feeding. This cooperative approach to feeding is amazing. One whale makes a loud, haunting call that can heard at the surface or with a hydrophone. This scares schooling small fish (in this case herring) from the depths to the surface. This calling whale or a second whale then creates a huge circle of large bubbles to net the rising herring. Other members of the group are thought to use their flippers to usher the fish into the net. The white underside of the flippers may well help to frighten the herring into the correct location. Bubbles start to appear at the surface and soon after the whales, which have swum up through the net, break surface in a most dramatic fashion – mouths open, herring jumping everywhere with much loud blKeku Staitowing. More than 20 whales can emerge at the same time. Quite incredible! The seabirds know what is about to happen and fly around to dive on any herring that have escaped the huge mouths of the whales. Bubble-net feeding humback whales – quite an experience!