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whale watch Issue 1, Jan. 2015-Jan. 2016 Collector’s Edition

Kaua’i

BEST Snorkeling & Whale Watching Beaches on Kaua’i Humpback Behaviors

Photo Gallery

Kaua’i Maps Exploring Kaua’i & Na Pali Coast

10

Must Things To Do in Kaua’i

This magazine is brought to you by:

The Kaua’i Coastal Path WALK. RUN. BIKE. STROLL.


whale watch Kaua’i A publication from Na Pali Riders Raft Tours . Kaua’i Scan QR code to Watch the Na Pali Riders’ Introductory Video

Table of contents The Greatest Show on Earth.................................8 Contemplations from the Captain.......................10 Pure. Unpredictable. Excitement.........................14 Winter Whale Fights...............................................18 Humpback Behavior Guide.................................36

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The Kaua’i Coastal Path.......................................50

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Calendar of Events Art Nights Farmers Markets Live Music Yoga Local News

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TH E H U M P B A C K W H A L E (Megaptera novaeangliae)

Hu mpb ack w hales are found in all of our world ’s oceans. T hese whales are divide d into re gional groups, one of which is the Nor th Pacif ic group. A sub - p opulation of the Nor th Pacif ic group visit s the main Hawaiian Islands each year during the winter and spring months to calve and mate in warm water s. Af ter this time, the whales re turn nor th to fe e d on zooplank ton and small scho oling f ish sp e cies in the nu trient- rich, cold waters of Alask a. T he roundtrip dis tance travele d during this annual migration is ~ 6,0 0 0 miles. T his is by far the longest traveling distance of any animal sp e cies. KWW

SCAN THE QR CODE TO VISIT WWW.NAPALIWHALE.ORG

SCAN THE QR CODE TO EXPERIENCE WHALE WATCHING WITH NA PALI RIDERS.

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TIPS

FOR

PHOTOGRAPHERS

KWW

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Greatest Show on Earth The

T       

HERE ARE LITERALLY HUNDREDS OF WHALE ENCOUNTERS THAT NA PALI RIDERS IS TREATED TO EACH YEAR. However, special ones stand out in my memory as being,

Story by Captain Chris Photos by Na Pali Riders

in my opinion, “the greatest show on earth.”

Humpback whales perform a breach by launching themselves entirely out of the water, in an air-attack so intense, it’s like a rocket coming full blast out of the sea. Their power is awesome. They often twist in mid-air, landing smack on their side with a loud bang. Today I met a whale I’ll never forget (we later named him Hollywood). He was a young male trying to impress a female in waters right off of our raft. Hollywood was not a very big whale but he sure had a lot of heart, a real show-stopper. We came across Hollywood in a totally stationary state, with a loyal girlfriend whale at his side. our raft in their general direction, and as the whales got closer to us, it became one of the most amazing whale encounters we’ve ever had. The amount of white coloring on this whale made him appear turquoise near the surface of the water. It was beautiful. The whale couple was positioned right below the raft, sending every passenger on board into a state of sheer excitement about what we were about to see. We peered down and realized that Hollywood and his girl were about 20 feet below the raft, and looking straight up at us. This lasted for 5 long minutes and then the whales disappeared into the deep, blue depths of the sea.

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Everyone on the raft that day looked at one another with a smile. We all had to agree that we’d just been a part of something truly special—but it was about to get even better. Suddenly, in the the near distance, Hollywood showed off his youth and endurance with a series of breaches to everyone’s delight. We all stared in awe as we witnessed at least 20 full breaches, with great twisting action and huge splashes and smacks. There are whales and then there are whales. And Hollywood will be stamped into my memory forever.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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C O N T E MP L AT I O N S

from the Captain T

here is always a great excitement I get for the upcoming Humpback whale season in Kaua’i, which runs from December through May of each year. Weeks before the whales are due to arrive, I find myself searching in vain for any signs that these animals have returned to our islands. I still remember how excited I felt last season when the local news reported that Hawaii’s first Humpback of the season had been spotted. As you may gather, I love the Humpbacks for the sheer entertainment that they provide. Their acrobatic skills are show-stopping and make watching them such a great treat. They are songwriters, creating beautiful music beneath the sea that can be heard from miles away. And as far as intelligence goes, they are highlysensitive animals, capable of feeling emotions just as humans do. This last point is what captivates me the most about the Humpbacks.

As I oceAn, I

g A z e o u t I n to t h e o f ten thIn k Abo ut

t h e e x c I t e m e n t g e n e r At e d w h en people wItn ess th e v e ry l A r g e

h u m b pA c k

(~50 - f t)

w hAles breAchIn g

cleAr o ut

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

of the

Story by: Capt. Chris Photos by Na Pali Riders Raft Tours

When I was a naive, fifteen-year old, I attended my first funeral. It was for a surf contest judge’s friend who had passed away after experiencing a fatal epileptic seizure. Out of respect, my surf buddies and I attended the ceremony, not knowing what to expect. Of course, there was formal, black attire and muffled sounds of sobbing heard from the crowd. And then the priest recited the comforting words from the scriptures and explained the concept of life after death. The casket was closed, so we did not experience viewing her lifeless body, and did not really feel any emotion or loss since we didn’t have a personal relationship with her. Fast forward some 33 years later. It’s now January 31, 2010. I’m captaining a whale watching adventure to the Na Pali Coast of Kaua’i. The ocean conditions are magical on this day, the surface of the water could

w At e r .

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Whale Fact: In Hawaii, Humpback whales are typically seen in small, social groups called “pods.” The cow-calf pod, represents the longest bond between individual whales—the mother and her calf will remain together for the entire first year of the calf’s life due to the need to nurse its mother’s milk. What is interesting to researchers is that whale pods have never been seen to have more than one calf in the group. For this reason, it has been concluded that a cow gives birth to one calf every two years. Most cow-calf pods in Hawaii are accompanied by at least one other adult whale, referred to as the “escort(s).” KWW

best be described as the apearance of an oil slick— incredibly smooth, glassy, and dark in color. Looking out at the horizon, I suddenly spotted ~7 Humpback whales huddled together. This struck me as an odd scene. What were these whales doing out there? Were they sleeping or logging (e.g. a resting state where the whale lies horizontally at the surface of the water without swimming). My instinct said that something was wrong. I turned off the engines on the raft and we floated closer to the scence with the ocean’s current. The passengers and I sat in deafening silence, we all shared that similar, eery feeling. The whales were huddled in a tight formation. Suddenly, haunting sounds vibrated off the hull of the raft, sounding like a cross between Scottish bag pipes and the cries of a newborn baby. I have never, in my many years of whale watching, felt such intense and sorrow from the whales in their song. The deep sounds seemed to stem from within their souls, as if releasing a painful emotion. But what was wrong? Then came the shock. We witnessed the sight of a baby whale, draped over the hump of its mother. It was rubberized, gray, and completely lifeless. This was a stillborn calf, probably just born. In vain, the mother Humpback was persistently trying to push the body of her dead baby to the surface, as if a breath of air would give it a chance of survival. The whales surrounding her seemed to empathize with her, offering their support and comfort to her. We were indeed watching a funeral for the stillborn calf. This day will remain forever in my memory. All of us on the raft were so very quiet as we watched. We were moved by the scene in front of us. We were touched by the obvious emotion that these intelligent creatures were capable of feeling. The pod’s sensitivity to the mourning mother seemed to be the same way that we, as humans, would feel if the situation were upon us.

All on the r aft sat in de afening silence, staring in unison at the m ass of w hales, and trying to figure out w hat was happening before us... child before I was born. This was a surprise, as my mother had never told me this. Perhaps, she held this back from me, because of the pain she felt, pain no different from what the mother Humpback was feeling on this day. I urge everyone who comes to Kaua’i to go on a whale watching tour, or simply watch these creatures from the shoreline. They are truly magnificent animals in all aspects of size, intelligence, and acrobatic skill. My hope is that visitors interacting with Humpback whales will encourage people to want to protect the species. KWW SCAN THE QR CODE TO SEE A HUMPBACK WHALE CALF ENCOUNTER WITH NA PALI RIDERS RAFT TOURS.

My sister once told me that my mother had a stillborn

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pure.

unpredictable.

excitement. th e h u m p b A c k s

put o n q uIte A s ho w–

m o s t A w e s o m e o n t h e p l A n e t. In

but h A w A I ’I I s

pe r h Ap s

the

h o w t h e y b e h Av e v e r y dI f f e r e n t.

b y n A pA l I r I d e r s r A f t to u r s

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pure. unpredictable. excitement. A

the

S

h u mp bAc ks Is t hAt t h e y Are “ g e n t le gI An t s ” o f t h e s e A . h o w eve r , t hIs Is n ot t h e c As e w hI le t h e y Are In h AwA I ’I .

pop u l Ar b e l I e f o f t h e

o what’s the big deal? 50-tons of whale

catapulting from the water like a rocket launch. Now that’s a big deal. The power of it all is a thrill to see. And you have to experience it first-hand to understand the pure, unpredictable excitement of a whale watch in Hawai’i.

The Humpbacks are here in Hawai’i only in the winter from December thru May, so you can easily miss the opportunity to see them, to smell them, to feel their spray, to hear their thunder. Humpback whale watching is addicting, and once you’re hooked, there is no cure.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Their behavior in Hawai’i is much different from the way they act in Alaska. A popular belief of the Humpbacks is that they are the “gentle giants” of the sea. However, this is not the case while they are in Hawai’i. The Humpbacks in Hawai’i are aggressive due to the breeding patterns that occur while they are in our warm waters. Evidence has shown that male Humpbacks are known to engage in strenuous, often violent combative battles over access to females during the breeding season. This makes for very exciting whale watching. In contrast, when the whales return to the colder waters of Alaska, they become more stable and cooperative, in order to

support the strategic feeding patterns that they require for survival. Here, the whales are slowswimming, grazing animals, and are more likely to act like “gentle giants.” But, you won’t see this while they are in Hawai’i. So come on out and enjoy a whale watch with Na Pali Riders Raft Tours while the season is hot. Call 808.742.6331 or visit us on the web at www.napaliriders.com. KWW

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WHALE FIGHTS W I N T ER

One

Of the mOst exciting events tO w i t n e s s i n h a w a i i ’s w i n t e r h u m p b a c k whale seasOn is the riveting sight Of 8 -10 g i a n t m a l e s b a t t l i n g f O r t h e at te ntiOn Of a fe m al e hum pb ack. th e s e a r e t h e a n n u a l h u m p b a c k “w h a l e f i g h t s .” B y N a Pa l i R i d e R s R a f t to u R s

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Winter whale fights... A group of male Humpbacks shove their bodies against one another as they compete for access to a female.

W

ith weights averaging 50 tons each, the Humpback whale is the 3rd largest creature on our planet. Now multiply that mass by no-less-than 10 giant whales battling it out in the ocean all at once, tossing and turning their massive bodies in every direction possible. Testosterone fills the air in this wildly entertaining battle of male Humpbacks as they fight for a single, chosen female mate. This is breeding season in Hawai’i. Size matters. Similar to a sumo wrestling match, the largest and most bully-minded whales use their size to “settle” in the area of water directly behind the female, tactically blocking any other whales from entering this space. Then, using swift swings of their massive tail, any other potential suitors are kept at bay. The more aggresive male Humpbacks will compete from the top and sides, smothering the opponent’s blow hole with a top-down, power slam of its head (aka “head lunge”), essentially choking out the competition by preventing them from coming up for air. And the smaller male Humpbacks own their own “bag of tricks.” Unable to compete with their larger counterparts, they must patiently wait for the “big boys” to tire out, and at these times they seize the opportunity to swim away with the prize. We watch the tidal wave splashing of the winter whale fights, but we rarely get to see what happens below the ocean’s surface. The activity in the underwater world is equally entertaining as that which happens above water. I’ve provided a QR code to scan to view whale wrestling moves of shoving, choking out the opponent, blowhole smothering moves, and a lot more. KWW SCAN THE QR CODE TO VIEW EXTREMELY EXCITING WHALE BATTLES FROM KAUA’I. ENJOY!

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Winter whale fights... A male Humpback breaches in an attempt to dominate over the pod.

Whale Fact: During the breeding season, the Hawaiian Humpback whales become fiercely competitive and perform all kinds of aggressive displays of behavior, making them widly entertaining to watch . They are enormous in size—an adult is as large as a bus, but much heavier at ~45-50 tons. Although gigantic, the Humpback whale poses no threat to humans. They are here in Hawai’i strictly for breeding and calving. In fact, during their visit to the islands they eat little or no food at all. KWW

An aggressive Humpback whale violently slaps the water repeatedly with its massive tail.

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Map of Kaua’i Island

10 Must Things to Do in Kaua’i 1

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2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

The cartograph above is provided by Lahaina Printsellers. Visit their web site for other exceptional art having to do with Hawai‘i. www.printsellers.com

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Exploring Kaua’i

Taro Fields in Hanalei

Peaceful Hanalei Bay

K lauea Lighthouse

K

Hanalei Pier Hanalei Bay

Princeville

Hanalei Rd Aku Rd 560 Bridge e k e W

i. 4M

Hanalei

56

Kalihiwai Beach

Kalihiwai Rd

Beach

K auea Wailapa Rd

Pila‘a Beach Na ‘ ina Kai Botanical Garden N. Waiakalua Rd

Larsen’s Beach

Kuhio Highway

Ko ‘ol au

North Shore Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Snorkel Spots Surf Spots

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaky waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going into the water.

Moloa‘a Bay

Rd

Rd

Beach Park

Lumaha‘i Beach

Anini Rd

M olo a‘a

ail 2M Tr u a lal Ka

Wainiha Beach Park

Rd ai iw lih Ka

i.

560

‘Anini Beach

Ka Ha ku Rd

Kil au ea Rd

Beach

Hideaways Beach

Secret Beach

Lighthouse R d

Lighthouse

Tunnels Beach

Anahola Beach Park d Anahola R

Lifeguarded Beaches: Anahola Beach, Haena Beach, Hanalei Pavilion, Ke’e Beach, Waioli Beach Pine Trees

Anahola

56

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Exploring Kaua’i 56 Kuhio Highw ay

East Side Mo alep e

Trai l

na Mailihu

d la R aho n i Ka

Rd na e h Olo

Kamalu

K No uam un o‘o ou Tr ail

Kua mo‘o Rd

Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Snorkel Spots Surf Spots

Wailua Falls

Kapa‘a Beach Park Kapa‘a

Ha leil io Rd

Lydgate Beach Park

Kuhio H ighway

Nukoli‘i Beach

Eucalyptus Grove

50 y wi liw ili

51

Hanam ‘ulu Wilcox Hospital

Hanam ‘ulu Bay

Ka pu le Hw y

Kuhio Hwy

56

Ahukini Rd

Lihu‘e Ri ce St

N wiliwili

Kip

Lihu‘e Airport

51

Rd

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Wailua Falls

Wailua Bay

583

‘i Hw uali m u Ka Puhi

Waipouli Beach Park

Waipouli Beach

Wailua

56

Rd ‘alo Ma

Lifeguarded Beaches: Anahola Beach Kealia Beach Lydgate Beach

28

Trail

580

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaky waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

50

Noun ou M t

Beach

581

Ka pa‘ aB ypa ss

l rai eT rlin we Po

Kuilau Rid ge Trail

Kawaihau Rd

Kalapak Beach N wiliwili Bay

Ranch

Opaeka’a Falls

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Exploring Kaua’i

South Shore

50

Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Snorkel Spots Surf Spots

Ka um ual i‘i H wy Kal heo L wa‘i

50

530

Rd

520

Glass Beach

Spouting Horn L wa‘i Bay

ass) Byp ip –Po‘ oloa iki (K Kino Ala

Ha lew ili Rd

K loa

Po‘ip Rd

Bay

540

Rd loa

Salt Pond Beach Park

wi liw ili

Tree Tunnel

Lifeguarded Beaches: Poipu Beach, Salt Pond Beach

Hanap p ‘Ele‘ele

N

Ri ce St

Maluhia Rd

Ka um ua li‘i Hw y

Lihu‘e

y

N wiliwili

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaky waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

P kala Beach

w li‘i H mua Kau Puhi

Law a‘i R d

L wa‘i Beach Baby Beach

Ha‘ula Beach

Po‘ip

loa Landing Kiahuna Beach

‘ip Po

Brennecke Po‘ip Beach Beach Park

Rd

Gillin’s Beach

Kawailoa Bay

Shipwreck Beach

Spouting Horn

Po‘ip Beach

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Po‘ip Beach

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Exploring Kaua’i Polihale State Park

Waimea Canyon on ny a eC ai‘ o K

Range Facility

50

Ko ke‘ eR d

y Hw li‘i ua um Ka

Rd Canyon Waimea

552

Waterfall next to Koke‘e Road

Ku ku i Wa ime aC any on T rail

Waimea Pier

Milita ry Bou ndary

550

Tr ail

Waimea Canyon Lookout

Kekaha Beach Park

West Side Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Surf Spots

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

550

Ke ka ha Rd Kekaha

Waimea

Small Boat Harbor Lucy Wright

Check-in Point

Beach Park

Raft Tours Waimea Canyon

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Beach Ka um ua li‘i Hw y

50

‘Ele‘ele

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ta k i n g i n

the N Pali Coast

3

3a

1

2

Ke ‘e Beach

4

5

i. 2M

Hanakapi ‘ai Beach

Wai ‘ahuakua Valley Double Door Cave

7

3 4

6

5

Hanakapi’ai Falls

5 7

Open Ceiling Cave Awa‘awapuhi Valley

8

Nu‘alolo Kai Miloli‘i Beach

9

13

Makaha Valley

12

11

Nu‘alolo Valley

Mil oli‘i Rid ge T rail

Polihale

Kalalau Valley Ka lal au

2M i.

Koke‘e State Aw a ‘a Park wap uhi Tra 3.2 il 5M

Nu ’alo lo T rail 3.2

10 Va lle y

Tr ail

Hanakoa Lookout

11

i.

5M i.

550 Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Snorkel Spots

Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Honopu Beach

10

Makole

34

9

8

Ho ‘olulu Valley

Hanakoa Valley

M i.

Pohakanoa Falls

2

i. 4M

3a

ail Tr u a lal Ka

Hanakapiai Falls Trail

Pirates Cave

6

1

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

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13

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

BREACH. EYE on the

By far the most spectacular and renowned of whale behaviors, where the whale generates enough vertical force using its flukes to lift nearly three-quarters of its body length out of the water. The “true” breach typically involves a twisting motion once the body reaches its highest vertical travel such that the force of impact is taken on the dorsal surface. Breaching may occur singly or in a series of as many as 30 breaches in a row.

EYE on the

1

Breaching.

2

Whale breaching is believed to be a form of whale play. It may also be a tactic used to dislodge parasites from the whale’s skin. Whatever the reason, witnessing a Humpback whale breach makes for a fantastic whale watching experience.

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3 Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

Headlunging. EYE on the Scientists believe this behavior to be a form of a “threat,” and involves a forceful forward thrust which brings the head partially or completely above water, as the whale is swimming towards its competitor. The mouth and throat may be inflated with water, in order to create a more threatening appearance.

A forward thrust brings the head partially above water.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

EYE on the

Peduncle Slap. A violent, downward movement of the tail fluke which which causes the peduncle to strike the water with a forceful, diagonal motion. This act is a form of aggression for competing males. Individual whales may be lifted out of the water when struck with a heavy peduncle slap.

Headlunging is seen as an act of aggression.

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

Pectoral Slap. EYE on the The pectoral slap is a repeated slapping of either one or both of the 9 to 15-foot-long flippers (e.g. pectoral fins) of the Humpback whale. This behavior is typically seen with the animal lying in a sideways position with one flipper being raised and lowered in a repeated action. It may involve rolling and slapping the right and left flippers alternately. Scientists believe that flippering is a form of communication among Humpback whales.

EYE on the

Fluke Slap. Also called “lobtailing,” fluke slaps are usually seen with the whale in a normal dorsal (backside-up) posture with the peduncle lifting repeatedly out of the water and slapping the water with the ventral (or underneath) side of the fluke.

Fluke slaps may be repeated over 30 times in a row.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

EYE on the

Spy Hop.

EYE on the

Jaw Clap. Believed to be a form of aggression in competing males, the whale opens its mouth and crashes down on the water with a loud pop.

The Humpback whale vertically pops its head out of the water, with its mouth closed. It is believed that this behavior allows the curious whale to view activity above the surface of the water. Many whale watching vessels will encounter whales spy hopping on their passengers, as if the whales are people watching. The jaw clap is an aggressive behavior.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

Blow. EYE on the

EYE on the

The blow or spout occurs as a result of the Humpback whale breathing. Adult Humpback whales take a breath every 10-15 minutes, but have been known to remain under water for as long as 45 minutes. The air from their lungs is under intense pressure, and when released, blows as high as 13 feet in the air.

The blow can exit the whale at a speed of over 300 miles per hour

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Whale blows are the best way for whale watching vessels to locate where the whales are.

The white color pattern seen on the underside of the whale’s fluke is unique to each whale.

Fluke Up Dive. The Humpback whale dives deep under water causing the fluke (aka tail) to first form an upward arch, then slowly descend vertically underwater.

Whale fluke markings assist scientists in identifying individual whales, they are what fingerprints are to humans.

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

EYE on the

Peduncle Arch.

EYE on the

Roll Over.

The Humpback whale forces its back out of the water just prior to deep-diving vertically into the ocean.

The back, or hump, that is seen above the water’s surface is how the Humpback whale earned its name.

Some whale watching tours will catch moments where the Humpback whales playfully rolls over, revealing its belly to onlookers. This is a delightful behavior to witness, since their white belly contrasts with the ocean, creating a turquoise color at the surface.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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Hawaiian Humpbacks | Behavior Guide

EYE on the

Bubbling.

EYE on the

Creating air bubble clouds aids the Humpback whales in feeding. The bubbles are tactically produced in a way to herd fish and plankton into small areas so that the whales may feed on them more efficiently.

The Humpbacks are naturally curious creatures, often approaching the rafts .

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An air bubble cloud rises to the surface of the water.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

If you place your camera in the water, you may be surprised at what is going on beneath the surface. Try it!

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The

Kaua’i Coastal Path. Walk.Run.Bike. Stroll.

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Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Cycle, run, or walk– Kauai’s coastal path on the east side is a scenic treat for all.

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The Kaua’i Coastal Path

The Kaua’i Coastal Path Ala Hele Makalae The Kaua’i Coastal Path is truly a one-of-a-kind treat that is 100% free to use. Named Ala Hele Makalae, “the path to walk or to go along the coast,” this is an extraordinarily scenic bike/pedestrian path stretching down Kauai’s east side. The 16-mile project, when entirely completed, will span from Nawiliwili to Anahola. In the spirit of promoting a healthy lifestyle, the path offers a paved, clean, and safe venue for cyclists, runners, and walkers, and is compliant with the American Disabilities Act (ADA). The completed portions of the path are enjoyed immensely by both residents and visitors to Kaua’i. Many people value the path as an alternative transport route, with the added perk of the expansive Pacific Ocean as the scenic backdrop. All along the way, shaded picnic pavilions are situated looking out over the ocean. There are well-maintaned restroom facilities as well.

The Kaua’i Coastal Path will eventually span 16-miles, curving along the east coast of Kaua’i from Lydgate Park in Lihue to Ahihi Point in Kealia. Aerial Photo provided by Richard Costello

Here’s how to access the path: Lydgate Beach Park to Wailua Beach Park: Begin the path at Lydgate Beach Park or Wailua Beach Park. This section of the path is 2.5 miles. Lihi Boat Ramp in Kapaa to Ahihi Point in Kealia: Begin the path at Lihi Boat Ramp in Kapaa (across from the Burger King), Kealia Beach, or the Kealia Kai public parking area. This section of the path is 4.1 miles.

52

Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Call 808.742.6331

www.napaliriders.com

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The Kaua’i Coastal Path

All along the multi-use path, shaded picnic pavillions offer expansive views of Kauai’s beautiful beaches and the

Spotting Humpbacks

is quite common during whale season (Dec.-May). The Kaua’i Coastal Path provides excellent signage with educational information on wildlife species, as well as viewing tips for visitors.

It is also lifeguarded. There are several picnic pavillions here.

54

Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Call 808.742.6331

www.napaliriders.com

55


The Kaua’i Coastal Path

The view from Kuna Bay (aka Donkey Beach) is simply breathtaking. The Kaua’i Coastal Path runs above the beach here, allowing users to take in ness. Kuna Bay may also be accessed by parking at the Kealia Kai public restroom area, located on the ocean-side of Kuhio Highway.

Call 808.742.6331

www.napaliriders.com

56

Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

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The Kaua’i Coastal Path Donkey Beach

History

1

The Kaua’i Coastal Path project began in 1994 when the Hawai’i Department of Transportation completed a master plan to create a 16-mile bike and pedestrian path that would extend from Nawiliwili to Anahola. In 1999, with support of Mayor Marianne Kusaka, the first part of the path was finished. The late Mayor Bryan Baptiste was also a strong supporter of the project, as well as current Mayor and path-advocate Bernard Carvalho. Land donations were made by Kealia Makai Holdings (7.23 acres of Kealia Beach lands), and Kealia Makai Property Owners Assocation (59 acres along Donkey Beach).

2

When completed, Ala Hele Makalae, “the path to walk or to go along the coast” will be a $30 million dollar project.

5

4 4

Kealia Beach

3 Kapa’a Beach

2 Bridge at Lihi Boat Ramp

1 Fuji Beach

58

Kaua’i Whale Watch | 2015 / 2016

Aerial Photo provided by Richard Costello

Call 808.742.6331

www.napaliriders.com

59

Kaua'i Whale Watch  

Welcome to the Humpback whale season in Kaua'i, Hawai'i. Whale behavior guides, maps, and fun stories to entice readers.

Kaua'i Whale Watch  

Welcome to the Humpback whale season in Kaua'i, Hawai'i. Whale behavior guides, maps, and fun stories to entice readers.