The Most Complete Guide of Ecuador

Humpback Whales: Dancers of the sea

The Ecuadorian coasts get festive during whale watching season. Every year between June and October, hundreds of humpback whales migrate from the Arctic to the tropical waters of Ecuador and Colombia for breeding. This extraordinary event attracts tourists, scientists, and journalists that come from far off places to enjoy these majestic cetaceans.

Since 1994, whale watching has become one of the main attractions of the summer in Ecuador. Cities, ports and towns in Manabí and Esmeraldas get prepared to receive national and international visitors. The services of lodging, transportation and navigation to the whale watching sites are varied, affordable and safe.

Humpback whales travel to the coasts of the country to breed, as their offspring must be born in warmer waters. These mammals can measure between 12 and 15 meters in length and weigh up to 30 tons. Humpback whales are dark with a great variety of white areas on the ventral part and flippers. They have the largest flippers of all the whales, almost a third part of their body´s length.

Despite their enormity, humpbacks are the most playful and acrobatic whales in the world. They like to breach out the water or hit repetitively the surface with their flipper or flukers. It is believed that the sound produced in this form could be used for communications purposes.

Humpback whales are also well known as the singer whales during the breeding season. Males take a vertical position head down and sing a complex sound repertory. These songs are structured in themes and can last 20 minutes or more. All the whales around sing a similar song, although the song is changing as the season progresses. The meaning of the songs is probably related to the reproduction process.

From the beaches or the boats, you can appreciate the dance of their tails and fins above the ocean´s surface. Generous in their magic and splendour, Humpback whales offer those who are watching an unforgettable experience. Our responsability is to respect them and their enviornment, so we can continue to offer a safe space for these beautiful creatures.


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