Thursday, October 28, 2010

Oregon Whales





Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

About Us
I have been involved in the maritime industry for 38 years and recently retired from Oregon State University Research Ship "Wecoma" which included scientific research of whales to sampling the bottom of the ocean to name a few. We were the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast. We have been inspected and have all the latest safety equipment. I hope you will join us on a exciting whale watching excursion aboard the Whales Tail.

Thank you for visiting our website, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Although we have taken the boat out of sevice for winter maintence we will be ready to go this spring, if you would like to make an advanced reservation for 2011 you can e-mail at: whalestail115@yahoo.com

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Oregon Whale Watching




Yesterdays storm produced 40 knot winds and 30' seas, as of this morning things have calmed downed with 18' seas.

Tomorrow we will be taking the boat out of the water for winter maintenance, we look forward to seeing you on the Whales Tail this spring.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Friday, October 22, 2010

Whale Watching



Here is picture to prove that gray whales do come into the Depoe Bay Channel
 



Want to see what the entrance to Depoe Bay looks like visit: Coast Guard Webcam

Tomorrow they are forecasting winds 40 knots, combined seas 28-33 feet, hope to have some pictures and video tomorrow.

Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

About Us
I have been involved in the maritime industry for 38 years and recently retired from Oregon State University Research Ship "Wecoma" which included scientific research of whales to sampling the bottom of the ocean to name a few. We were the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast. We have been inspected and have all the latest safety equipment. I hope you will join us on a exciting whale watching excursion aboard the “Whales Tail”.

Something new this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available, $25.00

Thank you for visiting our website, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

For more information visit: Oregon Whale Watching Tours

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Whale Watching Zodiac Style on the Whales Tail

To view slide show in full screen click lower right cormer



Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something new this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available, $25.00

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Oregon Coast Attractions























Whale Watching Report For Oct. 15
The whales were here in good numbers just South of the red #2 bell buoy. We had fantastic sightings with the whales coming by the boat showing off for the people. It is so cool to hear the sounds of the whales when they exhale and inhale, almost as good as seeing them, lots of nice tail shots today as the whales headed down to feed. We hope you will be able to join us on a exciting whale watching trip zodiac style aboard the Whales Tail.

Harbor Seals
Harbor seals are the most commonly seen seals along Oregon’s coast. Their population is increasing because of federal law protection along the U.S. coast.

Size: Average five feet in length; adult males weigh around 200 pounds and females 170 pounds.

Description: Most are bluish-gray with black spots and irregular white rings and loops.

Habitat: Temperate, ice-free coastal waters of the North Pacific and North Atlantic oceans; found from Alaska south to Baja, California in eastern Pacific.

Behavior: Spend equal amounts of time on land and sea, are graceful swimmers, but movement on land is clumsy. Seldom venture far from water; often seen resting on bay and estuary sandbars at low tide. Move in wriggling manner on land, pulling their bodies along with their short fore limbs. Haul-out areas on protected tidal rocks and reefs along outer coast are hubs of daily activity and annual cycles, providing for resting, reproductive activities, births, caring for the young, and the annual molt. Can dive to 600 feet and remain underwater for 12-15 minutes. Make little noise. Considered non-migratory.

Diet: Herring, smelt, flatfishes, lampreys, sculpins, squid and octopus.
Lifespan: Up to 20 years.

California Sea Lions
The California sea lion has thick fur plus a dense layer of under-hairs that stay dry when the animal is underwater and a thick layer of blubber to help maintain its body temperature.

Size: Males weigh an average of 800 pounds and are seven to eight feet long. Females weigh much less, around 200 pounds and measure an average of five feet in length.

Description: Mature males have dark red or chocolate brown fur that may appear black when wet. Females retain a light brown fur coloring. Males develop crests, bony bumps on the top of their skulls that turn lighter as they age. A long snout gives the California sea lion an almost dog-like face.

Habitat: Bays, estuaries and waters near shore, from southern Mexico to southwestern Canada. Most of population migrates to southern California and Baja peninsula during breeding season. Females are joined by males during the breeding season, May-August.

Behavior: Males migrate to winter feeding areas off Oregon, Washington and Canada, sometimes taking over docks, piers and marinas. Seldom travel more than 10 miles offshore. Usually haul out on beaches or rocky shorelines in closely packed groups. Walk on land with rear flippers tucked under them. Sometimes seen floating together on the ocean surface, with flippers in air, in an action called “rafting”. Very vocal, make barking sounds.

Diet: Squid, Octopus, schooling fish, rockfish, salmon.
Lifespan: 17-18 years, predators are orcas and great white sharks.

Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something new this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available, $25.00

Thank you for visiting our website, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Oregon Coast Whale Watching Report

This whale was "up close and personal"

Anybody know what this is? (see below)

Whale Watching Report For Oct. 13 It was a beautiful day here on the coast with temperatures in the high 70's. We also a fantastic whale sightings just South of the harbor entrance with multiple whales in the area. Once again they got "up close and personal" by coming up close to the boat for all the customers to get a good look, am convinced these whales really do like the zodiac. Hope you will join us on an exciting whale watching trip aboard the Whales Tail.

Information about the Sunfish (Mola mola) picture above
The ocean sunfish, Mola mola, is the heaviest known bony fish in the world. It has an average adult weight of (2,200 lb). The species is native to tropical and temperate waters around the globe. It resembles a fish head with a tail, and its main body is flattened laterally. Sunfish can be as tall as they are long when their dorsal and ventral fins are extended.

Sunfish live on a diet that consists mainly of jellyfish, but because this diet is nutritionally poor, they consume large amounts in order to develop and maintain their great bulk. Females of the species can produce more eggs than any other known vertebrate. Sunfish fry resemble miniature pufferfish, with large pectoral fins, a tail fin and body spines uncharacteristic of adult sunfish.

Adult sunfish are vulnerable to few natural predators, but sea lions, orcas and sharks will consume them. Among humans, sunfish are considered a delicacy in some parts of the world, including Japan, the Korean peninsula and Taiwan.


Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something new this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available, $25.00

Thank you for visiting our website, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Monday, October 11, 2010

Whale Watching on the Whales Tail, Dockside Charters























Dockside Charters is located on the east side of the Bay in the center of the harbor next to the Coast Guard Station. We at Dockside Charters have put our thoughts and ideas together, forming the premise, that ocean charters should be a more personal experience. Be honest and caring, making safety, comfort and satisfaction of our customer’s our first priority. We offer whale watching, scenic tours, to personal charters to fit your all your needs. You will find our office relaxing and comfortable, our office staff friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, with easy access to our boats. Whether you're heading out on one of our whale watching trips or just got back from a trip, you are always welcome to stop by to relax and say hi, the coffee is always on, and free. We have built our business on satisfied, repeat customers, give us a try and you’ll see why.

The Whales Tail is a 26' zodiac style boat that carries up to 6 people. It was the first and original zodiac style whale watching boat on the Oregon Coast, designed specifically for Dockside Charters to give passengers the utmost in sightseeing and whale watching experiences.

One of the features the Whales Tail offers is a unique vantage point that puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales as they feed along the coast of Depoe Bay. Don't be surprised if you notice the whales watching you as intently as you watch them. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something new this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available.

Thank you for visiting our website, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Depoe Bay Whale Watching Tours







Whale Watching Report For Oct. 12
We had sunny skies all day on the coast with temperatures in the mid 60's, tomorrow should be in the 70's. Once again the whales put on a fabulous show for the people by coming up close to the boat on numerous occasions. Whales were sighted about 1/2 mile outside the harbor entrance. The weather should be good through the weekend, hope you will join us whale watching zodiac style on the Whales Tail.

Northern Migration
In March whales are returning northward along the Oregon coast. The northbound migration begins with immature animals adult males, and females without calves. These animals pass the Oregon coast from early March through April. Breeding sometimes is observed at this time. Calves usually are rambunctious but stay close to their mothers as they become more coordinated and develop an insulating blubber layer. Calves are at least a month old before they migrate north with their mothers. Mothers and calves are the last to leave the lagoons and move somewhat more slowly, passing Oregon from late April through June.


During the spring migration, if the weather is good, you can see whales within a few hundred yards of coastal headlands. The full round-trip migration from the Baja calving lagoons to the Bering Sea and back is 10,000 miles, the longest known for any mammal. Other whales also are known to migrate between summer high-latitude feeding grounds and more temperate low-latitude breeding and calving areas. Researchers know more about the gray whale because it moves close to shore. This movement has led to speculation that gray whales navigate by staying in shallow water or keeping the surf noises to one side or the other, depending on their direction of travel.

Southern Migration
Pregnant females are the first to migrate, followed by mature adults of both sexes and then by juveniles. Whales travel at a rate of up to three to five miles per hour during the southbound migration. It takes them about three weeks to get to Mexico.

Gray whales eat very little while migrating and while in calving areas. Many whales may go without food for three to five months. The animals travel south to the three major breeding and calving lagoons on the west coast of Baja California, Mexico: Laguna Ojo de Libre, adjacent to Laguna San Ignacio; Guerrero Negro Lagoon and Magdalena Bay.

Dockside Charters located in Depoe Bay, Oregon offers whale watching Zodiac Style aboard the Whales Tail. This is a very unique experience that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales. This is a great trip that is a little more personal and gives you and your family an adventure that is not to be missed. Here you can enjoy the incredible scenery of the Oregon Coast, transit the worlds smallest navigable channel, and enjoy watching gray whales, harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine life. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something NEW this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available price $25.00

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Whale Watching Report from the Whales Tail









Whale Watching Report For Oct. 10
No whale watching today as they are forecasting rough ocean conditions, visit: Marine Weather Forecast

Scarback the gray whale the most famous resident whale has been sighted off Depoe Bay. Scarback was first sighted this morning on the Whales Tail's first trip of the day. Scarback has been around since 1979 and can be identified by the large scar on her right dorsal hump. It is believed that Scarback got her famous scar from an exploding harpoon, which some believe she acquired between 1985 and 1988. The orange coloration of the scar is from whale lice, this is a crustacean that eats the dead skin of the whale and is beneficial for the whale. The pictures above are from todays whale watching trip aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters located in Depoe Bay, Oregon offers whale watching Zodiac Style aboard the Whales Tail. This is a very unique experience that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales. This is a great trip that is a little more personal and gives you and your family an adventure that is not to be missed. Here you can enjoy the incredible scenery of the Oregon Coast, transit the worlds smallest navigable channel, and enjoy watching gray whales, harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine life. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Write a Review about us

Something NEW this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available price $25.00

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Whale Watching on the Central Oregon Coast





Whale Watching Report For Oct. 5
We had great whale watching this morning as whales were sighted just outside the harbor entrance and off South Point. Tomorrows weather looks to be good with swells 6' and a Northerly wind of 10-20 knots. This weekend may not be as nice as the wind and sea conditions may pick up which make for rough ocean conditions.

Dockside Charters located in Depoe Bay, Oregon offers whale watching Zodiac Style aboard the Whales Tail. This is a very unique experience that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales. This is a great trip that is a little more personal and gives you and your family an adventure that is not to be missed. Here you can enjoy the incredible scenery of the Oregon Coast, transit the worlds smallest navigable channel, and enjoy watching gray whales, harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine life. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

How did gray whales get their name?
The gray whale acquired its name from the gray patches and white mottling on its skin.

What does the gray whales skin feel like?
The skin has scratch marks and patches of white barnacles, and orange whale lice. A whale’s skin feels like a peeled hard-boiled egg. Most of the adult grays have scars and tooth-rake marks from encounters with Orcas. Light gray or white scars show where the whale barnacles have fallen off. Young whales have barnacle patches soon after they are born.

How big are gray whales?
Adult males can reach a length of 45 feet, adult females are slightly larger, and reach about 50 feet in length. Both sexes weigh up to 30-40 tons. The gray whales flukes, or tail can span up to 10 feet.

Do gray whales sing?
Gray whales make gurgles and warbling sounds, but nobody really understands what these sounds mean.

Do gray whales sleep?
This is what some scientists say, the whales don’t stop swimming during migration, but some think they may sleep and continue swimming on “autopilot.” They catch up on sleep in the lagoons, where they have even been observed snoring! Others say the whales take short naps of 10-20 minutes.

How can I recognize a gray whale?
Gray whales have streamlined bodies with narrow, tapered heads. The upper jaw slightly overlaps the lower jaw. The gray whale has no dorsal (top) fin. But about 2/3 of the way back on the body is a prominent dorsal hump. It is followed 6-12 knuckles along the dorsal ridge that extend to the fluke (tail). Its fluke is about 10 feet across, pointed at the tips, and deeply notched in the center. There are 2-5 grooves on the ventral throat.

How big are gray whales eyes?
An adult’s eyes on top of their mouth and are about the size of baseball. They are located about 8 feet from the tip of the gray whale’s jaws. They also have eyelids, I have also heard you can tell the age of a gray whale by the protein in their eyes (during a autopsy to determine the cause of death).

How long can a gray whale stay under water without coming up for air?
An adult gray whale can stay submerged up to 30 minutes.

Do gray whales have teeth?
No. The gray whale is in the sub-order Mysticeti. The Mysticeti whales have a baleen instead of teeth.

Are gray whales friendly?
Visitors to the calving and breeding lagoons sometimes encounter the “friendlies,” gray whales that come up to the small boats and let people to touch them. Gray whales aren’t very friendly during courtship and mating.

How long does a gray whale live?
Grays can expect to live about 40 to 60 years. Some can live 70 years.

At what age do gray whales mate and breed?
Gray whales reach sexual maturity somewhere between 5 and 11 years of age. A gray whale that lives to be 40 years old could have as many as 18 calves.

Something NEW this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available price $25.00

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Monday, October 4, 2010

Whale Watching Zodiac Style on the Whales Tail





Whale Bits
A small percentage of Gray whales feed off the coast of Depoe Bay in the summer. Their primary food source is mysid shrimp, which swarm in abundance near the bottom of the kelp beds. During this shallow water feeding behavior, watchers can often see one half of the tail fluke above water while the whale is head down in a kelp bed. The half fluke looks very much like a shark fin. Records from the whaling industry indicate that this species usually does not feed during its migration or winter calving periods. They can lose up to 30 percent of their body weight between feeding seasons. Whales have been observed coming to the surface with mud streaming from their baleen in the calving areas and along the migration route. Such behavior may indicate attempts at feeding or training the calves to feed.

Gray whales are noted for their protective behavior toward their calves. They were called “devil fish” by early Yankee whalers who had their ships rammed and sometimes sunk after the whalers harpooned a calf to entice the mother closer. Now they are considered the “friendliest” of whales, often curiously approaching anglers and whale watching boats. When a Gray whale comes to the surface, its blow or spout is a double-plumed, misty jet of vapor, rising 6 to 12 feet, that can often be seen against the horizon. The blow is not a fountain of water, but a mist of condensed warm moist air exhaled under high pressure from the lungs. The whale can expel 100 gallons of air in a single blast.

Generally, gray whales are slow swimmers, averaging three to five mph during migration. They have a rhythmic breathing pattern. Normally they will make three to five short, shallow dives of less than a minute each and then a long, deep dive. A general rule is one short dive and a blow for every minute spent in a deep dive. This repeated breathing pattern enables the whales to store up oxygen and get rid of carbon dioxide built up during a long dive. In a single breath, 80 to 90 percent of the air in their lungs is exchanged compared to 10 to 20 percent in land mammals.

Feeding dives may range from 3 minutes up to 15 minutes. They can stay under water for 30 minutes if they need to. If they are frightened, they can hide on the bottom or travel great distances underwater. Sometimes they dive and reappear a quarter of a mile away. Whales have the largest brain of any animal on earth. They are curious and often seen “spyhopping”, or lifting their heads above the surface of the water. They like to rise up and get a better look at their surroundings. When a Gray whale lifts its tail flukes out of the water, it is going into a deep dive. This action, called sounding or fluking, helps propel the whale downward at a steep angle to the bottom where they feed on small crustaceans. After the flukes disappear under the water, the turbulence of the dive will cause a circle of smooth water, known as a fluke-print.

The ultimate in whale sightings is a breach, which occurs when a whale launches as much as ¾ of its body out of the water in a spectacular show of power and grace. Scientists are not sure why whales breach. They speculate that they do it to remove parasites, communicate with each other, or just do it for fun. Gray whales are not known for breaching nearly as often as their cousins, the humpback. Young Gray whales seen along the Oregon coast seem to breach the most frequently.

Dockside Charters located in Depoe Bay, Oregon offers whale watching Zodiac Style aboard the Whales Tail. This is a very unique experience that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales. This is a great trip that is a little more personal and gives you and your family an adventure that is not to be missed. Here you can enjoy the incredible scenery of the Oregon Coast, transit the worlds smallest navigable channel, and enjoy watching gray whales, harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine life. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something NEW this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available price $25.00

For more information about us and Whale Watching visit: Whale Watching on the Whales Tail

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915

Friday, October 1, 2010

Whale Watching Tours, Oregon Coast, Depoe Bay


Whale Watching Zodiac Style "up close and personal" on the Whales Tail

Gray Whales Reproduction
Gray whales reach sexual maturity between 5 and 11 years of age (average eight years), or when they reach 36-39 feet in length. Breeding can occur from December to April. Although sometimes seen on the southward migration, most mating behavior is observed in Baja and on the northward migration. Females are frequently seen in the company of two males (termed a “courting triad"). Females trying to avoid copulation frequently roll onto their backs with their flippers extended to avoid male advances. Females must roll to an upright position periodically to breathe, however, at which times males attempt copulation.

Gray whales are solitary in nature. They come together during the mating season but do not form family units. Calves stay with their mother until they are weaned, usually by October. A single calf is born in late December to early February after a gestation period of about 12 months. Most females bear a calf once every two years. A newborn calf is about 15 feet long and weighs about one ton. Calves are nursed for six to eight months on fat rich (53 percent) milk and grow very rapidly during this time. The mother and calf will stay in the Baja area for up to two months while the calf builds up stamina and a layer of blubber for insulation during migration.

Feeding Habits
Gray whales have 130-180 baleen plates (up to 18 inches long) growing down from each side of their upper jaw. Composed of material resembling a human fingernail, the baleen plates are three inches wide at the top and taper to a point. Gray whales have the stiffest of all baleen and are the only whales known to feed extensively on bottom dwelling animals. While in the Bering and Chuckchi Seas, gray whales feed on amphipods (shrimp-like creatures), as well as mysid shrimp, mollusks, tubeworms and hydroids. The main food source is amphipods that live in the top ¾ inches of the bottom sediment.

Some whales have been observed with fewer barnacles and more abrasions on one side of the head, indicating that they use one side more frequently while skimming the bottom. To feed, the whale turns on its side (usually right side), dives to the bottom and sucks up mud and sediment in a pulsing fashion, leaving head- sized depressions (about the size of a desktop) in the mud. As it closes its mouth, it expels water and sediment through the baleen plates, trapping the food on the inside before licking it off with their huge tongue and swallowing it.

Researchers have calculated that gray whales need to consume seven percent of their body weight (about 2,600 pounds) per day. One gray whale eats about 396,000 pounds of amphipods in approximately five months while feeding in northern waters.

Dockside Charters located in Depoe Bay, Oregon offers whale watching Zodiac Style aboard the Whales Tail. This is a very unique experience that gives you 360° viewing and puts you "up close and personal" for observing Oregon's resident gray whales. This is a great trip that is a little more personal and gives you and your family an adventure that is not to be missed. Here you can enjoy the incredible scenery of the Oregon Coast, transit the worlds smallest navigable channel, and enjoy watching gray whales, harbor seals, sea lions, and other marine life. We try to provide you with a once in a lifetime experience that is not to be missed along with some great memories.

Something NEW this year we are offering are sweatshirts that have our Whales Tail logo on the back, different colors and sizes are available $25.00

For more information about us and Whale Watching visit: Whale Watching Zodiac Style

Thank you for visiting our web site, we hope to see you aboard the Whales Tail.

Dockside Charters
270 Coast Guard Pl.
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

Phone: 541-765-2545
Toll Free: 1-800-733-8915
 
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