Friday, February 29, 2008

Kona Coast, Big Island, Hawaii

We spotted a group of pilot whales and dolphins cutting through the water and headed their way. Dropping down the dive ladder into the cool Pacific, it came as something of a surprise when a group of humpback whales roared past.

A cow and calf swam past, followed by a jostling, aggressive collection of males set on separating the pair and breeding with the female.
One of the biggest males circled around, took aim and swam toward me. I kicked back furiously, trying to clear make room. He raced past, rolling his body at the last minute to avoid slamming into me with his dorsal fin.

If it was a warning, it certainly worked. I gave the whales a very wide berth for a very long time.