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Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)
Humpback Whales are one of the most studied of all Whale species. They are easily recognised by their characteristic black and white patterns, particularly on the underside of their tails. They also have distinctive knobby protuberances on their heads and tails. They are well known throughout Australia as one of the most commonly sought after by Whale watching enthusiasts and tourists. One of the main reasons for this is because of their tendency to migrate close to the coastline, making them well suitable for Whale watching tours in places such as Jervis Bay. Another reason is because of their regular ability to jump out of the water, known as breaching. Breaching can be an absolutely spectacular site to behold and can leave people lost for words.
QUICK FACTS - Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) Length: Adults: 14m to 18m; Calves: 4m to 5m at birth Weight: Adults: up to 50 tonnes; Calves: 2 tonnes at birth Gestation: 11 to 11.5 months Weaning age: up to 11 months Calving interval: 2 to 3 years Physical maturity: Age: 12 to 15 years; Length: 13 to 14m Sexual maturity: Age: 4 to 10 years Length: 11.6m Males/12.1m Females Mating season: June to October Calving season: June to October Cruising speed: 7km/hr Blow pattern: Small and bushy, up to 4m Protected: Since 1965