HomeNewsWhales start making splash in Bundaberg waters

Whales start making splash in Bundaberg waters

Whales Humpback Highway
With the first whales spotted making their annual journey along the Bundaberg coastline, the Reef Authority is reminding whale-watchers to respect the rules of the ‘humpback highway'. Photo: Lady Musgrave Experience

Locals are already having a whale of a time spotting the first travellers along the ‘humpback highway', with the Reef Authority urging whale-watching enthusiasts and visitors to keep a safe distance.

After feeding in the icy Antarctic waters during the summer months, the first of over 30,000 humpback whales have started to make their way to the warmer waters of the Great Barrier Reef to mate, calve and socialise.

Director of Field Management Strategy at the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (Reef Authority) Dr Mark Read, emphasised the significance of this annual migration and the global effort in safeguarding these gentle giants.

“It’s not a coincidence that these whales migrate to the Great Barrier Reef, it’s thanks to a global management effort in protecting these incredible gentle giants,” Dr Read said.

“We recognise that the Great Barrier Reef is an important part of the migration path for our southern visitors (humpback whales), and the Reef Authority is dedicated to doing everything we can to put protection measures around these animals.”

Dr Read said as soon as whales reached local waters, they were protected by a series of rules that ensured both their safety and those viewing them during any interactions.

“These giants of the deep never cease to amaze, even for whale researchers or tourism operators who are lucky enough to interact with them each year,” Dr Read said.

“But given the popularity of the Great Barrier Reef to a huge range of users, and the number of whales making the annual migration to the Great Barrier Reef, it will become a bustling humpback highway over the coming months, and important for everyone to adhere to approach distances.

“If you run into a 14 or 15 metre, 40 tonne whale, it’s likely your boat will come off second-best, and the whale could also be injured.

“The message is simple, be alert, watch out for whales, and know the rules to keep a safe distance.

“It’s a simple message to ensure the safety of these magnificent creatures and those who admire them.”

For more information on rules and regulations for whale interactions, click here.

Lady Musgrave Experience launches Whale Search Expedition

Whales Humpback Highway
The Lady Musgrave Experience launched its Whale Search Expedition on 16 June, spotting the first whales on the ‘humpback highway'. Photo: Lady Musgrave Experience

The Lady Musgrave Experience has already started taking in the sights of humpback highway after launching its inaugural Whale Search Expedition last week.

Owner and Director of Lady Musgrave Experience Brett Lakey said the team had been excited about the expedition, with some of the first whales already spotted.

“It’s what makes the search all-the-more exciting,” he said.

“… a half-day aboard Main Event is a great experience in-and-of-itself for adults and children.”

The Whale Search Expedition was held onboard the luxury high speed catamaran Main Event and included four hours of cruising along the ‘humpback highway’, where Bundaberg Whale Watching’s Marine Ecologists will provide informative commentary and a light lunch will be served.

This journey was an exploration seeking out early whales, with the official whale watching tours kicking off 7 July through to 3 October 2024.  

More information here.


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