The whales and the leaves are thinking about winter.

As summer winds down and fall takes over, we are trying catching our breath from a record summer in Depoe Bay. The mornings are cooler and the whales in Depoe Bay are packing on the last of the pounds before the migration south begins.

The “resident” gray whales along the central coast typically hang out until late October or even early November before beginning the swim south. So, if you need another reason to escape to the coast for a day or two, check the weather and come on over!

Nearly 120,000 visitors have come through our doors already this year and with three more months to go, we’re approaching record territory for folks coming to see whales with us!

The registration for the upcoming Whale Watch Weeks and volunteer trainings opened on Monday, October 2nd so if you haven’t signed up for your sites yet, please do so by clicking on the Training tab near the top of this page.

 

 

 

Running the Numbers

Each year everyone wants to know- how many whales did we see this year!?!!?

And it’s always a great question. The official tally is still coming in, (some sites can’t report daily) but within the next few days we will have all of the paperwork collected and totaled.

However, based on the sites that have been able to report, we have collectively spotted and counted over 1,300 gray whales this spring and our amazing volunteers have spoken to over 16,000 visitors from around the globe. Again, these are just the initial numbers and more are coming in each day.

That brings our Winter 2016 and Spring 2017 numbers to:

Whales: 2480+

Visitor Contacts: 31,907+

Those numbers are just fantastic. An average day of whale watching with our volunteers during whale watch week is around 206 whales spotted per day and over 2,658 people educated about gray whales each day!

But there’s more…

Many of you might have heard that we started streaming our cameras live on YouTube this past whale watch week. It’s true, we did and it was awesome! You can find the archived videos at:

https://www.youtube.com/user/OregonParks

livestream capture.JPG

This live feed was shared via the Oregon State Park’s Facebook page and several large media outlets also linked to our cameras. We were more popular than that poor pregnant giraffe for a while! This live camera exposed over 700,000 people worldwide to what we offer here on the Oregon coast, and has generated a huge amount of interest in the Whale Watching Spoken Here program as a whole.

You!

This program cannot happen without our amazing volunteers. Volunteers, you know who you are and I want to make sure that you know that you are very much appreciated! What you currently contribute and have contributed to this program for the last 38 years is special and it is powerful.

We can’t wait to see what the next season of whale watching has in store for us and we are up to the challenge!

Thank you again and stay in touch,

-WWSH

 

 

Sunshine, blue skies and whales!

What a great way to finish off our 2017 Spring Watch Week.

Hope you had sunglasses today! We had a beautiful day all day today along the coast with hundreds of whales sighted. Over 300 in fact!

We will be compiling the week’s numbers and posting our final tally next week.

 

Thank you to all of the volunteers who made this great week happen!!!

-WWSH

Rain, rain, rain, – now whales, whales, whales!

We’re back!

Well yesterday, 3/29, is a day most of us won’t remember. Rain, wind, and some more rain. Very few whales spotted and many stations had to stop looking early due to the horrendous weather conditions.

Today, we’re back on the whale train!

Numbers are still coming in, but several sites saw over 20 whales today. We still had a mix of sun and rain showers but overall it was a much better day!

At the Depoe Bay Whale Center we saw 11 whales and 3 of them decided to breach for us! It was a great day of whale watching on the central coast!

See you tomorrow!

WWSH

Big waves, few whales.

Well, it was a pretty rough day for whale watching along much of the Oregon coast. Most of us had sustained winds of over 20mph and swells of 10-15 feet for most of the day. Like we say at the Whale Center, its hard to see a 10 foot spout behind a 15 foot wall of water!

Harris Beach and Cape Ferrelo both saw 18, while most of the rest of us saw fewer than 5.

We only saw 4 whales all day at the Whale Center in Depoe Bay, but the last one breached 6 times! A few lucky, patient, visitors got to see it live, and for the rest of us, we can watch it on the YouTube replay! The breaches happen 30 minutes before the end of the video.

-WWSH

 

Day 3 – we’re back on the whale train, headed north!

Good weather and decent ocean conditions returned and so did our whale sightings.

Over 300 whales have been seen today by our amazing group of volunteers! Sounds like many folks had some really active whales too!  Many locations reported breaches and other fun behavior.

Highest numbers of sightings were on the central coast averaging in the mid 20’s to low 40’s.

See you tomorrow!

WWSH

 

 

Day 2 in the books.

Well it got a little rainy as the day progressed but we still managed about 100 whales state wide.

Up north was the best bet today with Cape Disappointment spotting 18 gray whales.

We managed 8 here in Depoe Bay at the Whale Center, but it looks like one of our summer whales has returned. It fed 50ft from shore in front of the visitor center for about an hour!

We’ll be out there again tomorrow rain or shine!

if you haven’t yet, be sure to checkout our live YouTube stream. Today we had people from all across the globe helping us count whales!

https://www.youtube.com/user/OregonParks

See you tomorrow!

 

WWSH