Local News

Whale Season Kicks off in SA

640px-Southern_Right_Whale_and_Gentoo_Penguin_5747485418.jpg

South Australia's whale season has commenced with two sightings of Southern Right Whales and a sighting of a Humpback in just a few days.

Starting the season was the sighting of what was believed to be a Humpback Whale in Aldinga near Snapper Point on 15 May.

On Monday 18 May an SA Whale Spotter over on the Eyre Peninsula, Marianne, reported that a surfer at Fishery Bay had a very close encounter with a breaching whale on Saturday just 1 km away.

Another Southern Right Whale was spotted at the Head of the Bight on Sunday 17 May.

Ben Boothby, Coordinator at the SA Whale Centre, said while the Southern Right Whales are coming down from feeding in the Subantartic to breeding in SA's whale sanctuaries, Humpbacks are more rare to spot as they are  on the 'Humpback Highway'.

"They don't stick around, they're going up the east coast and west coast of Australia to places like Broom and Hervey Bay to do their breeding and carving and hanging out in the warmer water," Mr Boothby said.

SA Whale Centre staff have been spending the past couple of months during COVID-19 closures, learning, planning and rebuilding with plans for new exhibits once they reopen.

The centre is expecting to reopen in the second wave of the State Government's lifting of restrictions on June 8, when museums are allowed to welcome in up to 20 people at a time.

Boaties beware that restrictions are now in place for whale season.

Personal water craft and jet ski operators are prohibited from launching or operating vessels in the Victor Harbor Restriction Area, which runs from Kings Head to the southern points of West Island, and east towards the Murray Mouth to the Victor Harbor /Alexandrina Council boundary line.

Story by Jennie Lenman

Photo CC BY-SA 2.0, Southern Right Whale on Wikipedia