Friday, February 28, 2014

Guide Report: Feb. 21-27: San Ignacio Lagoon

Ballenas Grises de Laguna San Ignacio

Reporte de GuiaGrupo  del 21 de Febrero hasta al 27 de Febrero, 2014

De Rubi Gabriela Moreno Cordero

Reporte 21 al 27 Febrero 2014

Un grupo de 27 Britanicos lidereado por Mark Carwardine, un experto Oceanologo dedicado a la exploración de la vida silvestre, quien a trabajado  por todo el mundo en la investigación de la vida silvestre, quien compartió con todos nosotros parte de sus experiencias y conocimientos a través de exposiciones y fotografías fantásticas e ilustrativas.


El primer día de observación fue el mejor de todos y unos de los mejores días que mi experiencia de 18 años conociendo estos bellos cetáceos, nunca vi antes una madre comportándose tan locamente, se ponía pansa arriba entraba lentamente debajo dela embarcación y nos abrazaba paseándonos alrededor, el entusiasmo fue inmenso paso de embarcación en embarcación haciéndonos lo mismos a todos increíblemente Amistosa, mientras su bebe pasaba de lado alado de las pangas buscando también nuestras caricias, lo cual todos encantados les dimos feliz mente, los gritos aplausos y lágrimas de emoción no se hicieron esperar, fue increíble la gran bienvenida que les dio tan hermosa ballena y su juguetona cría.


Los días siguientes seguimos teniendo bonitas experiencias diferentes cada una pero siempre con la esperanza de ver a la juguetona de los abrazos cálidos, sin embargo no apareció, la gente de lo más linda, educada y divertida, una de nuestras turistas la mas joven del grupo Ashley, nos confesó después del primer viaje que ella había vencido una fobia que tenía al Mar todo su cuerpo temblaba al entrar a la embarcación, pero su inmenso Amor e ilusión por la Ballena gris y poder conocerlas de cercas la hizo atreverse a intentar superar ese miedo, a los siguientes días era la primer persona en subierse a la embarcación era increíble ver su entusiasmo y confianza en si misma, comentamos que algo maravilloso de la ballena gris es que son de un espíritu tan bello, que nos hace olvidar dolor, miedo, preocupación, enfermedad, etc … son definitivamente medicina para el humano.


English Translation:
A group of 27 British led by Mark Carwardine, an expert dedicated to the exploration of wild-life oceanographer, who at worked throughout the world in the investigation of wildlife, who shared with us part of their experiences and knowledge through exhibitions and fantastic and illustrative photographs.

The first day of observation was the best of all and one of the best days of my 18 years experience getting to know these beautiful cetaceans, I never saw before got a mother behaving so madly, belly upright and went slowly under the boat and she embraced us walking around, the enthusiasm was huge passage of boat in boat making us the same to all incredibly friendly, while his baby went on winged side of the pangas also seeking our caresses, which all delighted we gave them happy mind, cries tears of emotion and applause were swift, great welcome which gave them so beautiful whale and her playful offspring was amazing.

The following days we still have pretty different experiences each but always hoping to see the playful warm hugs, however did not appear, people of the most beautiful, fun, one of our tourists and educated the younger Ashley group, confessed to us after the first trip that she had overcome a phobia that had the sea his whole body was shaking when entering the boat, but his immense love and enthusiasm for whale gray and get to know them fences made her daring to try to overcome that fear, on the following day was the first person to bond to the boat it was amazing to see their enthusiasm and self-confidence, commented that something wonderful about the gray whale is of a beautiful spirit are, that makes us forget pain, fear, worry, illness, etc... are definitely medicine for the human.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Guide Report 2: Feb. 27, 2014

Guide Report 2
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 27, 2014
By: Liisa Juuti



We were honored to have Mark Carwardine, a talented zoologist, conservationist, wildlife photographer and writer as a guide for our British group in the camp. He gave excellent presentations on the gray whale,  photographing and wildlife in general. The weather was exceptionally cloudy with almost no wind, except of the last gorgeous day, the sun shining all day long and ending with a stunning sunset and a rainbow over the lagoon of San Ignacio.

On our first whale watching trip we found the "hugger", a beautiful female gray whale with her calf. She would swim beneath the boat with her tummy up and "hug" the boat with the flippers in the air. Then she would start pushing it.  Our clients were astonished, screaming out of excitement as it seemed she would flip the boat over. The baby was patiently waiting aside while her mother was having fun with us. Another beautiful moment was to see one baby´s probably first contact with a human. We found the mother and the newly born calf in the mouth of the lagoon and patiently followed them from a distance for a good while. The mother was first protecting her baby by being in between the boat and the baby. Then after some time she seemed to get more confident and let her baby between her and the boat, then pushing the baby towards us! Then she came to show example by letting us touch her and kept pushing the baby towards the boat, until the calf got encouraged enough and popped out her head for us to pet her. That confidence towards us, humans, from the mother whales's side just melts my heart!
 

On our walk to the shore we found octopi, stingray, chocolate clam, scallop and an interesting looking seaslug. We learned to differentiate the female octopus from the male, and how to take the scallop out of the shell.


Guide Report 1: Feb.27, 2014

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 27, 2014
By: Hayley Carmody




Our new group at Campo Cortez traveled across the Atlantic from England. They came on a tour from Natural Travel Company with their guide Mark Carwardine. Everyone came with the hopes of seeing and touching whales, but they also wanted to get camera lessons from Mark. Mark is a nature photographer and every day gave a wrokshop on cameras. His workshops were ensightful and entertaining as he showed us pictures of one of his favorite models, the Gray Whale. Out on the boat everyone was practicing what they had learned and spent a lot of time looking at whales through their camera lens.


On the first day out we had a very friendly whale. The mother put the boat on her stomach and gave everyone a ride around the lagoon. The baby swam around the boat and eventually worked up the courage to come pet the people. Everywhere we looked we saw mothers and babies and the occasional mating. The last census counted 73 calves and 170 adults with a total population of 243 whales.

Our most famous animal in San Ignacio Lagoon is the gray whale, but we also like to inform our guests on the surrounding flora and fauna. We take people on plant walks where we appreciate the mangroves and when the tide is right into the mud flats. Maldo and Cuco pointed out octopi that were hidden in scallop shells, crabs running around and the stingrays swimming in the shallow water. These experiences make people appreciate Laguna San Ignacio for more than just amazing whales.


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Guide Report: San Ignacio Lagoon Feb.21

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 21, 2014
By: Hayley Carmody




At Campo Cortez every group is having friendly encounters and the whales are showing off in the way we all love to see. They come up to the boats to see all the happy people and end up staying at the boats to play. On the first day out within 5 minutes we had a friendly whale. She stayed with the boats for the whole time we were in the observation area. Everyone got to play with her and a few lucky people even got sprayed in the face by a whale. We decided that whale snot is the best way to shower.


Everyone comes here to see the gray whales, but we also try to introduce people to the local culture and industries. Valentine, Maldo's brother and fellow boat driver, is a scallop fisherman when he isn't taking people to see whales. On the way back from one trip he stopped by one of the scallop boats to bring back an example of how the process occurs. During lunch everyone sat there mesmerized as he showed us the scallop inside the shell that we had been eating.

Ali, 11 years old from 
Florida, came here with her family and upon eating her first fresh made tortilla she needed to see the whole process. On the final night she went back to the kitchen palapa and sat with Katie, Maldo's wife, and they made tortillas for the final dinner. It was then that she learned that even though Katie made it look so easy it is really quite difficult. The ladies here begin to learn how to make tortillas at a very young age and perfect the art over time. We look forward to seeing how Ali has improved next time she comes to Campo Cortez.





Guide Report: San Ignacio Lagoon Feb.21

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 17-21, 2014
By: Liisa Juuti



This week we had a chance to observe the mating of the gray whales at a very short distance. It is quite a complex and long process, possibly taking days. There are always various males included, one of them assisting the mating couple. The gray whale female reaches the maturity at about 11 meters, usually between 6 and 10 years. It usually breeds every other year until about 40 years, averaging 15 calves in their lifetime.

We also found the friendliest whale of this season so far! Usually when having an encounter with a friendly whale we take turns in the boat to touch it. With this whale it wasn’t necessary, he would spyhop right next to the boat to be petted, then move to the other side of the boat and pop out his head. This would go on for ten minutes, then he would swim over to another boat to repeat the procedure. Amazing! He really seemed to enjoy the game.


At the camp we had a lovely evening walk to the shore at sunset when the tide was low. We found a couple of Two-Spot Octopus that were hiding in the shells, spraying ink out as a fear reaction and causing our guests to scream of excitement (another fear reaction?) On the last night of this group Maldo spoiled us with a delicious lobster barbeque dinner. What an interesting week!


Friday, February 21, 2014

Feb.21 Gray Whale Census

Gray Whale Census
San Ignacio Lagoon, Baja, Ca. Sur. Mexico
February 21, 2014




Gray Whale Census for San Ignacio Lagoon. Taken February 21, 2014.

Adult Gray Whales:  170
Gray Whale Calves:   73

Total Gray Whales:  243





Guide Report: Feb. 17-21

Ballenas Grises de Laguna San IgnacioReporte de GuiaGrupo  del 17 de Febrero hasta al 21 de Febrero, 2014

De Rubi Gabriela Moreno Cordero


Reporte 17 al 21 Febrero 2014

Estuvimos con un grupo grande, la suerte era en nuestro favor, llego un juvenil muy juguetón que iba de una embarcación a  de la misma forma que el a otra, dejándose acariciar por todos nosotros, doy salto tras salto dando una demostración de su energía y gozo que los humanos le hacíamos sentir de la misma forma que el nos extasiaba, así fue la bienvenida tan agradable que recibimos de este bello ballenato.

Los días siguientes  más tranquilos pero igualmente agradables, la mañana amaneció con bastante niebla por lo cual salimos un poco más tarde de lo planeado, situación que no impidió que saliéramos de nuevo a ver como se divertían y  jugueteaban madres  con crías ni tampoco inhibieron a los machos insistentes por aparear algunas de las hembras.
Tuvimos dentro de los días una demostración de los bailes regionales, pedrito uno de nuestro staff quien es el experto bailarín de la comunidad deleito a los clientes bailando diferentes ritmos regionales, la gente emocionada se levantaron en pareja para bailar asiendo súper entretenida y cultural la hora feliz.
Maldo nuestro Jefe les ofreció la última noche de estancia, un extra de nuestro marisco local que es un producto de calidad, Los Ostiones…mmm… que los hizo asados, degustaron con gran deleite cada uno de nuestros visitantes, quienes fueron de lo más amables y simpáticos… se despidieron con aplausos y lágrimas en sus ojos agradeciendo infinitamente nuestras atenciones.



English Translation:
We stayed with a large group, the luck was in our favor, there came a very playful youth that was at another boat acting very friendly in the same way as the other, letting himself be petted by all of us, leaping after leaping by giving a demonstration of his energy and joy that by meeting us humans and feeling the same way as us…a captivating feeling, so was the welcome so pleasant that we received from this beautiful calf.

The following days were more quiet but equally as nice, the morning dawned with much fog which got a little later than planned, a situation that did not prevent our departure again to see whales-how amused themselves and fiddling mothers with calves nor inhibited the insistent male to mate some of the females.

We had a demonstration of regional dances during the days, Pedrito one of our staff who is dancer community expert delight customers dancing different regional rhythms, excited people rose, a couple dance grabbing super entertaining and cultural happy hour.
Maldo our Jefe, offered the last night of stay, an extra from our local seafood that it is a quality product, the oysters... mmm... which made them roasted, they tasted with great pleasure each of our visitors, who were really kind and friendly... bid farewell with applause and tears in their eyes thanking infinitely our attentions.






Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Guide Report: Feb. 17, 2014

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 17, 2014
By: Hayley Carmody



This week the population of whales is at 215, 60 each are mothers and babies, and 95 are singles. We are beginning to see a change in the behavior of the whales. There are not as many showy displays of tails high in the air and spy hopping, which is sometimes associated with mating. Now the mothers and babies are approaching the boats and the baby’s curiosity seems to be increasing. On one very special day we had a single female whale approach the boats to play. She spent the whole 90 minutes playing with the boats. She pushed the boat around, opened her mouth and even did a few breaches. We all felt very lucky to have such an intimate experience with the whales.
At Campo Cortez everyone’s main focus is to see the whales, however when we get back to camp we try to take advantage of the beautiful ecosystem. The Vizcaino Biosphere Reserve is a very special place. The gray whales use the lagoons as their breeding grounds, migratory birds come down here for the winter and the mangroves and sea grasses provide a nursery for fish and other sea life. Lisa, one of the guides, took people out kayaking by the camp into the mangroves to see the diversity of wildlife.

Coming to see the gray whales becomes addicting. You can never get enough of these huge animals coming so close to you when you have nothing to offer. Robert and his wife have come to Campo Cortez in past years and decided to come down again. They love everything that Baja has to offer and drove from San Diego to Laguna San Ignacio to bring their grandson out for his first experience with whales. They spent the first few days observing whales, a few came up out of curiosity but they did not get to pet. On their last trip out they were appreciating everything the whales have to offer when all of a sudden a friendly whale popped its head out of the water and everyone got to pet the whale. It is always special when someone gets to pet a huge whale for the first time. It was very special to be out on the boat when the grandson Brendon first touched the whale and the smile on his face. It will be an experience that he will always remember, when his grandparents took him to Campo Cortez and he pet a whale.




Monday, February 17, 2014

Guide Report: Feb. 13-17

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 13-17, 2014
By: Liisa Juuti


The first night with the new group was just magical! There was no wind at all, letting us enjoy the concert of the howling coyotes and the breathing of the whales in the lagoon at full moon. We had a couple of misty mornings, with one of our native American guest playing his flute at sunrise invoking the four elements.

The pressure for finding friendly whales was off after the very first whale watching trip, thanks to "Afrodite", a beautiful young lady whale that came to play with all the boats. She was just hilarious pushing the boat back and forth and having everyone to pet her. During the other trips we saw breaching very close, skyhopping and protective mothers with their babies. Maybe it was the magical playing of flute from our native American guest that attracted and encouraged a curious baby whale to get her goodbye kiss from us in our last whale watching trip.


At high tide we had a chance to go kayaking to the white and red mangroves, accompanied by lots of birds such as Godwit, Whimbrel, Little Blue Heron, Snowy Egret and White Ibis. At low tide we had a walk on the beach and found a huge octopus. They often hide in scallop shells, serving as a tasteful snack for the opportunistic coyotes looking to fill up their stomachs.


Friday, February 14, 2014

Census: February 13, 2014

Gray Whale Census
San Ignacio Lagoon
at Campo Cortez & the Vizcaino Bisophere



Date: February 13, 2014
San Ignacio Lagoon

Adult Gray Whales:  156
Gray Whale Calves:   60
Total Gray Whales:  216



Guide Report: Feb. 9-13

Ballenas Grises de Laguna San Ignacio
Reporte de Guia
Grupo  del 9 de Febrero hasta al 13 de Febrero, 2014
De Rubi Gabriela Moreno Cordero

Grupo del 9 al 13 de Febrero 2014

En este grupo pudimos disfrutar de la experiencia familiar, ya que vinieron 2 familias de USA .. el primer dia de observación de ballena salimos por la mañana y al llegar ya nos esperaba una hembra juvenil que jugo como loca con nosotros, salto mas de 5 veces alrededor de nuestra embarcación dejo que cada uno de nosotros la acariciáramos y regresaba constantemente para sentir nuestro cariño.


La noche 12 de febrero, celebramos el cumpleaños de Katerin la nieta de Maldo nuestro Jefe, Katerin nos preparo junto con sus amigos un baile especial que preparo para nuestros clientes, la gente disfruto, tomaron fotos, videos y aplaudieron mucho, los niños de la comunidad y los niños de USA jugaron soccer haciendo un partido clásico de Mexico contra USA…fue empate ganaron uno partido cada equipo.
Otra experiencia enriquecedora fue, cuando vinieron las artesanas de la comunidad a mostrar sus piezas artesanales, nuestros visitantes pudieron ver el trabajo tan bonito que hacen con materiales reciclados, papel mache, concha pismo, concha de abulón todo pintado y hecho a mano, una de nuestras visitantes nos dio un donativo para apoyar el trabajo de estas mujeres ejemplares, que ayudan a la economía familiar y muestran orgullosamente un poco de nuestra cultura local.
Al final todos los visitantes tomaron una foto de grupo donde muestran lo divertidos que estuvieron y el tiempo excelente que vivieron compartiendo con la familia y las hermosas ballenas que con su amor hacen todo posible.

English Translation:
In this group we could enjoy the familiar(family) experience, since 2 families of USA came. the first day of observation of whale went out in the morning and on having come already, he(she) was waiting for us that a juvenile female that juice as madwoman with us, I jump more than 5 times about our craft I leave that each of us we were caressing it and was returning constantly to feel our fondness.

The night on February 12, we celebrated the birthday of Katerin the granddaughter of Maldo our Chief, Katerin prepared for us together with its friends a special dance(dancing) that I prepare for our clients, the people enjoyed, they took pictures, videos and applauded very much, the children of the community and the children of USA played soccer doing a classic(classical) party of Mexico against USA … it was a tie they gained(earned) one party every team(equipment).

Another enriching experience was, when there came the artisans of the community to show its handmade pieces, our visitors could see the work so nice that they do with materials recyclings, papier-masher, pismo conch, conch of abalone quite identical and done to hand, one of our visitors gave us a donation to support the work of these model women, which they help to the familiar(family) economy and show proudly a little of our local culture.

In the end all the visitors took a picture of group where they show it entertained that were and the excellent time through that they lived sharing with the family and the beautiful whales that with its love do quite possibly.





Thursday, February 13, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon Guide Report-Gray Whales

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 9-13, 2014
By: Liisa Juuti


The whale camp at Campo Cortez was full of action and emotions. On the whale watching trips we were really lucky: everyone got to experience a direct encounter with this amazingly friendly migrating mammal. It was wonderful to see the different phases of the gray whales' stay at San Ignacio Lagoon; the males conquering the females, the mating involving at least 2 males and a female, and the protective mothers with their newly borns. There are more whales at the lagoon than for many years, so we didn't spend much time looking for them! There was a particularly friendly whale coming up to each of the three boats to get his scratch and splash us in return.

The weather at Campo Cortez was gorgeous allowing us to go kayaking at sunset, do some jogging, play football, observe the osprey protecting his nest and listen to the whales breathing close to the shore. The tranquility is just overwhelming here. Catalina's food was very much loved, people begging for the recipe for the delicious chilaquiles. The most exciting moment for me was an eye contact with a coyote on my way to the bathroom in the early hours or the day. He was only two meters away, and for a few seconds we just stayed there, looking at each other, 2 creatures of this planet. Thank you, Campo Cortez, for this unique experience!




San Ignacio Lagoon Guide Report

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 9-13
By: Hayley Carmody



 

San Ignacio Lagoon is full of whales. Every direction that we looked whales were playing and mating. As we drifted along with the current the whales followed. One day we had a whale follow the boat for 40 minutes spy hopping. It was almost as the whale was practicing to get the best spy hop because each one was a different style. It would swim along and then bring its body out of the water to look at us. While we watched this whale there were other whales that swam around under the boat.


On the second day out there was a whale that was drawn to Katy 2. It was a small whale who played with the boat, pushing it around and splashing. After a little the whale swam away and did 3 breaches behind the boats. The whale was thanking us and saying bye! The 3 breaches gave us time to get the perfect picture and appreciate the size and grace of the gray whales.






The third day provided the opportunity for everyone to touch a whale. Everyone hopes to be the lucky person that a whale is drawn to, but everything that happens here is on the whale’s terms. There was one friendly whale that took turns swimming up to each of the boats to say hello. As people stuck their hands into the water we could hear the scream of joy as they touched a whale for the first time.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Guide Report: San Ignacio Lagoon: Feb.5-9, 2014

Ballenas Grises de Laguna San Ignacio

Reporte de GuiaGrupo  del 5 de Febrero hasta al 9 de Febrero, 2014De Rubi Gabriela Moreno Cordero


El día estaba Prefecto, poco viento, buen Sol,  así empezamos la caminata hacia el punto de embarcación, emocionados por ir al encuentro tan deseado con las ballenas grises, en nuestro camino por los senderos marcados también disfrutamos de nidos de Aguilas Pescadoras  que por alguna extraña razón hicieron su hogar justo al lado del camino del embarcadero, los visitantes tomaron fotografías y extrañados también por tan rara decisión de esta pareja de aves,  seguimos al punto y dividimos los grupos en dos embarcaciones e iniciando alegres nuestro tan deseado tour.


Como de costumbre pudimos apreciar los diferentes comportamiento de las ballenas a los cuales no perdieron oportunidad de fotografiar cada movimiento y posiciones posibles de ellas, lo que me extraño un poco fue la ausencia de madres con crías que normalmente a estas fechas ya se acercan un poco más a nosotros, note que las crías están muy pequeñas la mayoría de ellas, tendrían aproximadamente una a dos semanas de nacidas, razón por la cual no permite la madre acercarse a nosotros, más bien buscan estar aisladas para evitar el acoso de los machos que solo quieren aparease.



Una de las noches tuvimos la presentación de sobre la Biología y Migración sobre Ballena Gris exposición de Hayley nuestra Bióloga, la gente participo e hiso muchas preguntas más enriqueciendo así con su participación, al día siguiente tuvimos la plática sobre el desarrollo eco turístico y como inicio todo este atractivo y observación de ballenas en la laguna de San Ignacio, recordando la memoria del Gran Abuelo de las ballenas, Don Pachico Mayoral, cosa conmovió hasta las lágrimas y agradecimos por su inmensa aportación al mundo. Gracias a nuestro  siempre Amado Pachico.





English Translation:
The day was prefect, little wind, good Sun, so we start the walk towards the boat point, excited to go to the so desired meeting with the whales on our way along the marked trails also we enjoyed nests of Fishing Eagles (Osprey) who for some strange reason made his home right next to the road from the pier, visitors took photographs and also surprised by so rare decision of this pair of birds to build their nest right here. We then followed to the point and divide groups into two boats and cheerful starting our long-desired tour.

As usual we could appreciate the different behavior of the whales who wasted no opportunity to photograph every movement and positions them, what a little strange was the absence of mothers with calves that normally these dates fast approaching a little more to us, note that the young are very small most of them, they would have approximately one to two weeks old, reason by which the mother does not allow approaching us, rather seek to be isolated to prevent harassment of males who only want to mate.


One of the nights we had the presentation of on the biology and Migration on Gray Whale exhibition of Hayley our biologist, people participated in and taught many questions more enriching as well with their participation, the next day we had the talk on the eco-tourism development and as all started this attractive and whale watching in the San Ignacio Lagoon in recalling the memory of the great grandfather of the whales, Don Pachico Mayoral, thing moved to tears and appreciated by his immense contribution to the world. Thanks to our beloved always Pachico.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

San Ignacio Lagoon Guide Report

Guide Report
Gray Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon
February 5-9, 2014


By: Hayley Carmody

 
On the first trip out to see the whales everyone is filled with excitement. They wonder how close the whales will get, if they will even see whales, and of course how many babies there are. Everyone on the boat become fast friends as they share the excitement of seeing the gray whales so close. Between the splashing, laughing and excitement the whales came up to the boats to see what is going on.

Splashing became the theme of Campo Cortez this week. The babies are getting bigger and the mothers have begun to approach the boats to say hello. Mothers and babies spend most of their time at San Ignacio training for the journey back up to Alaska, but even that does not stop them from coming up to see the boats once in a while. There were a few people who were able to touch the whales, and they spent the rest of the time rolling around under the boat.


The 7th of February we celebrated Maldo’s birthday (for those of you who do not know Maldo--he's the camp Jefe or Chief and makes everything happen-you will son know Maldo). There was plenty of cake for all and music to accompany the fiesta. The family was able to surprise Maldo by walking into the palapa singing and carrying a cake. After that he gave everyone a talk about the history of Campo Cortez and the way it has grown. He talked about how the camp has developed into one of the top environmental camps in Mexico.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Guide Report: Feb.1-5

Guide ReportFeb. 1-5, 2014San Ignacio Lagoon
By Jim Dorsey


On the February 1-5 trip to Campo Cortez we made contact with a large female on the second morning out.  She was not just friendly but treated our boat as a large toy, shoving us around and rubbing on our keel. She opened her j mouth and we got a good look at her baleen and everyone on my boat got to pet her.


She stayed with us for about an hour and then went back and forth from our panga to another, always returning for more fun. 

On days like this it only takes one friendly whale to make the entire trip.

Jim Dorsey
Overland guide and naturalist.