Whale Feeding Habits
Instead of teeth, the Humpback whale has 300 to 400 strips of baleen hanging from its mouth. This baleen is used as a filter for their food from the ocean.
The main menu preferences for a Humpback whale are krill and small-schooling fish such as herring, capelin, sand lace and mackerel.
When eating, a Humpback whale can open its mouth up to four times its normal size, disconnecting their lower jaw more than 90 degrees a spectacular vision for some lucky Gold Coast whale watchers that may see a Humpback Whale opportunistically feed.
To catch their food, Humpback whales will disorientate their prey by releasing bubbles from their blowhole in clouds, nets or lines know as bubble netting.
Whales in Paradise research shows that Humpback whales will feed in packs with the leading whale using unique sounds and bubble nets to coordinate the hunt.
The cold Antarctic waters provide a thriving environment of krill and small-schooling fish, creating a perfect feeding around for Humpbacks. In feeding season, one whale can consume more than one ton of food a day.
During their holiday to the Gold Coast and Brisbane waters, a humpback whales will live of its blubber reserves causing a 20 percent body weight loss.
At the end of the breeding season, whale watchers on board the brisbane whale watching cruise will notice a considerable change in the whales that first came to the Gold Coast shores in June. It has been reported that while the whales arrive with a huge 5 to 7 inches of blubber on them, this will have disintegrated to less than 2 inches thick by the time they leave.
Eastern Australian Humpbacks will only opportunistically eat during breeding season if there is adequate fish available. This has been sighted in the waters of the Gold Coast on numerous occasions.