Whale watching is a brilliant activity for everyone. You don't need much to start, other than a vantage point, binoculars, a camera, patience - and luck. A bit of planning and knowledge can enhance the experience.
The species you are most likely to see off the NSW coast are Humpbacks and Southern Right Whales
. Humpbacks are the larger of the two, and as they dive, you'll see them display their distinctive humped back. Southern Rights have a particularly large head, that feature what is known as callosities - distinctive lumps on the head made of hard material, similar to human finger-nails. Other possible sightings include Orcas, Minkes and Sperm whales.
Watch out for whale behaviour. The "blow" is when they send up air, water vapour and mucus as they surface to take a breath. It helps us to see where the whales are - and who they are, as each whale species has its distinctive blow.
Breaching is the most impressive of behaviours, it's when most of the whale's body is pushed out of the water, to fall again in a massive splash. It's a common behaviour of Humpback whales in particular. Watch out for slapping of fins and tails, waving them about, hitting the ocean surface. If you get close enough, a whale might also poke his head out of the water and do a bit of human watching. For more whale watching tips (as well as the best whale-watching spots along the coast) visit www.wildaboutwhales.com.au
To help you get outfitted for whale watching, we have some great Paddy Pallin gear up for grabs! To go in the draw to win a whale-watching kit including a Osprey Talon 22 daypack, Patagonia Torrentshell Rain Jacket, Manzella Ultra Max Liner Gloves, Icebreaker Pocket Hat, and Paddy Pallin logo stainless steel water bottle simply forward this email to a friend!