The Whales are Back! First Humpback Spotted off Kauai
Hawaii said aloha to the first of its winter vacationers. The first humpback whale of the season was spotted Monday in waters off of Kaua‘i. Chandra Bertsch is the general manager of the tour company Holo Holo Charters.
The sighting was two weeks earlier than last year, when the first whale was spotted October 4. But it’s not the earliest -- 2 years ago humpbacks were seen as early as late August.
Ed Lyman is the marine mammal response manager for the Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary in Hawai‘i. He says the beginning of whale season is a good time to remind people that these endangered animals are federally protected.
Under federal law, people are required to stay 100 yards from whales and 1,000 feet when operating an aircraft. Humpback whale season in Hawai‘i usually runs from November through May…where as many as 10,000 are expected to pass through island waters.