Gold Coast is Great For Whale Watching by:Coraline Kennedy
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 the Antarctic waters, these animals migrate north to sub tropical waters where they mate and give birth>During their migration of up to 10,000 kilometres,humpbacks attract thousands of visitors to coastal towns and a great place to view them is from the Gold Coast.
The migration timing can vary from year to year based mostly on the water temperatures. June to august is the most common time for the northern migration then again to the south from September to November. The young males usually lead the groups with the pregnant cows and calves bringing up the rear.
At a maximum length of 16 metres, the humpback is not the largest whale found in Australian waters but it is arguably the most iconic. Formerly only being valued for its worth when dead, mainly for its oil and whalebone now it is prized alive, economically and environmentally. Whaling in the 19th century exploded into a thriving business, and the use of large scale whaling boats made sure that some species came very close to extinction.
When southern right whales and blue whales became scarce, the whalers began to target the humpback, killing almost 8300 off the east coast between 1949 and 1962 and by the time the International Whaling Commission banned humpback whaling in the Southern Hemisphere in 1963, the whalers had reduced their population to about 5% of the pre-whaling existence. Illegal whaling by the Soviet Union were responsible for killing over 48,000 humpbacks between 1947 and 1973 and today there are still rogue whalers illegally operating in Australian waters.Thankfully, today, the population has shown steady recovery of around 10 % a year and in 2006 was estimated at around 8,000
Tours in the Gold Coast operate from August and guarantee a 100% daily sighting record Whales in Paradise offers an intimate encounter on an unforgettable Whale watching cruise to the deep blue waters of the Humpback Whale Highway and includes a river/canal cruise past the homes of the rich and famous. It is a half day cruise with tea and coffee provided on a purpose built catamaran for about 60 passengers. Gold Coast Whale Watching departs the Marina Mirage and cruises the Broadwater and Seaway direct to the Whale Migration on a purpose built catamaran with three viewing decks holding up to 120 people. Morning tea is also provided and the skipper provides entertaining and educational commentary.
About the author
Visit The Gold Coast, Broadbeach for a fabulous opportunity for whale watching. Broadbeach hotels can be researched and reviewed on the goldcoastguides site. On this website you can locate valuable guides on Broadbeach accommodation along with other money saving advice and tips.
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