#1 – If you’re in Hawaii during whale season then the next time you snorkel, scuba dive, or even just free-dive under the water, listen closely as you can hear the vibrations of the whale song when they’re singing nearby. You may hear the echoes of their songs reverberating from nearby walls and in some cases, you may even be able to feel the songs vibrating through your body.
#2 – All of our whale watching boats have hydrophones on board which are essentially underwater microphones. When conditions are favorable we drop the hydrophones into the water and the whale song is broadcast live to everyone in the boat. Sometimes when they’re really close you can actually feel the vibrations through the pontoon sides of our super rafts!
#3 – If you’re not in Maui for whale season don’t despair. – Click on this link: http://www.jupiterfoundation.org and be connected to “The Juniper Foundation” and their live streaming of the whale song off the coast of Hawaii.
Hearing the whale song first hand has been described as an ‘other-worldly’ experience. Indeed, the remarkable array of creaks, groans, and moans produced by the humpback can sound like something from a sci-fi movie.
While both male and female humpbacks are able to produce sounds, only the males appear to produce organized songs with distinct themes and melodies. The song is almost always sung on breeding grounds like those off the coast of Maui and our calm waters make it an ideal location to hear it.
The males often sing while suspended deep below the surface, their long front flippers jutting rigidly from their sides. The songs can last up to 20 minutes, and can be heard more than 20 miles away. The male may repeat the same song dozens of times over several hours, and whales in the same geographic area sing in very similar “dialects.” Amazingly, the composition changes as it is being sung with all singers in a population singing the same version simultaneously at any one time.
It is still unknown why the whales produce their song. It has been suggested that the male whales may be trying to attract females, warn off other males from the area or that it’s simply just a basic form of communication.
Either way, make sure you check out at least one of the ways to hear this amazing, and so far unexplainable phenomenon. Maybe after listening to it you have some theories of your own…