On September 26, one of our teams had a very exciting sighting: a new mom and calf pair for the year!
Legato and her calf on September 26! Photo: Moira Brown
Sighted to the north close to a cluster of islands called "The Wolves," the team observed an adult with a calf, spending time at the surface close to each other, coordinating dives and making body contact. The pair wasn't one that we recognized, so back in the office that night we looked at the photos and identified the adult as Legato (Catalog #1802). However, we were hesitant to jump to conclusions that this adult was the mother of the calf; it's a little bit unusual to have a mother and calf appear in the Bay of Fundy that weren't seen by aerial survey teams covering the East Coast or the Southeast (SEUS) calving grounds. Plus, this was our only sighting of them, so perhaps they were just sighted together by chance. Legato was born in 1998 and has had three calves, all birthed in the SEUS. She may have birthed this calf in a different location, but with the bad weather in the south this winter, it is possible that the pair was missed during surveys.
On September 28, the whale watch company Quoddy Link Marine photographed the pair together, behaving like a typical mother and calf. So this is indeed a new mom and calf for the year, and we are delighted to welcome the 22nd calf of 2011 into the population!
Mom and calf, being playful. Photo: Moira Brown