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Whale behaviour – what to know before I go on whale safari

Whale safaris are often organised with marine biologist or other specialists onboard the vessel. Your whale tour can include a brief presentation of whale behaviour. Here are some interesting facts about whale behaviour. 

  1. Why do whales jump? The scientists don’t actually know why the whales jump, or breach, out of the water. It is likely to be a way of communication, warning or attracting. Maybe it is just simply playing. What ever the reason, it is a breath-taking moment to see a humpback whale breaching out of the water right next to you. 
  2. Whales can come out of the water just enough to have their eyes above the waterline, spyhopping. Just like seals, they observe the surroundings for a while. Maybe the whale is looking at you looking at them! 
  3. When whales surface to breath, they blow air, water vapor and mucus. Each species has a distinctive blow. While a humpback’s blow is quite low, blue whales blow up to 12 metres. 
  4. Whales never sleep. They can relax one side of their brain, but the other remains constantly active. Whales breath consciously (unlike humans and most other animals) so sleeping would not be a good idea. 
  5. Some whales have been observed playing with other sea mammals like seals or dolphins.

During and after the whale safari you are often able to ask more questions about the whale behaviour and Northern Norwegian sea life from your guide.  

If you want to know some great tips on how to photograph the whales, check out our article here

Book your next whale safari with Visit Lyngenfjord:

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