Head or Tails?

We had amazing encounters yesterday with a family of resident whales called the Group of Seven.

Among the group were a couple of relatively large calfs, both of which were inquisitive and friendly.

At times, it was almost as if they presented themselves for photos (of course, at other times, we had to swim like mad just to keep up).

In case you ever wondered what a sperm whale looks like head-on, here's a photo:

head-on view of sperm whale

The lump at the top right (actually, the whale's top left) is the blowhole, which is how the whale breathes. The pointy area at the bottom is the animal's mouth. The attached remora and small school of attendant fish are optional accessories.

The splotchiness (is that a word?) is due sloughing off of dead skin. The darker patches are older skin, and the lighter patches are newer areas.

And to keep things in balance, here's the view from the rear:

rear view of sperm whale

Attached remoras again optional.

Note: Photos taken under permit.