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Whale Mating Habits

 

As with all mammals, copulation in humpbacks involves internal fertilization, but intromission has never been observed in the Gold Coast.

The genitals of both sexes of the humpback whale are nearly identical in appearance. Apart from the female having a large bump know as the hemispherical lobe at the tail end of the genital slit and the distance between the anus and genital slit varying between the sexes.

Even though the penis of the humpback male is two and a half meters long, whale watchers will not be able to get a glimpse of it as it is normally retracted within the body cavity.

Whales in Paradise Gold Coast Whale Watching research shows that while humpback whales reach sexual maturity by the age of 7 to 8, they do not become sexually active until about 5 more years later.

Like the majority of mammals, Humpback whales are not monogamous. Instead, they have numerous mating partners during each breeding season on the Gold Coast and Brisbane coastlines.

It is easy to tell the difference between male and female whales when whale watching out in the Gold Coast waters as males are usually covered in battle scars. These scars are the result of the fierce competition among the males for an ovulating female.

Even though a female humpback will ovulate multiple times during their breeding season on the Gold Coast, not all of them will be in heat at any one time.

Female humpbacks will normally get pregnant in the warm waters of the Gold Coast and Brisbane and return the following year to give birth. They need to give birth along the Eastern Australian coastline otherwise their calf will die if they are born into the freezing waters of the Antarctic. After giving birth, a female whale can become immediately pregnant again.

The best time to go whale watching in Queensland is during breeding season from June to November. This is when Whales in Paradise Gold Coast Whale Watching cruise will spot thousands of whales singing, breaching, fighting and showing off to excited on lookers on board their vessel.

Whales in Paradise reports that the Humpback whales are the most acrobatic and attention seeking of the great whales. Their classic tricks that are commonly seen while whale watching on the Gold Coast are associated with mating and calf rearing – check out recent footage.

It is easy to spot a female’s ‘primary escort’ when whale watching as they stick close to the female keeping other males, challenger, away.

A male escort accompanies eighty percent of mother and calf pods that migrate to the Gold Coast. Whales in Paradise believe that the males association with the mother and calf will only last a few hours because the lactating female is not seen as a potential mate anymore.

As seen on board Whales in Paradise Whale Watching Cruise, male humpbacks will use tail slaps, head slaps and explosive underwater blows to threaten each other in the fight for females.