Maui Whale Fest freebies: spotting stations, guided hikes, talks with marine life expertsby: Maureen O'Connell
posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 at 02:42 PM
Saving Whales Around the World lecture
Greg Kaufman, Pacific Whale Foundation’s founder and president, will present Saving Whales Around the World at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4 at the Wailea Beach Marriott Resort and Spa. Kaufman has studied humpback whales throughout the Pacific for more than three decades and is the co-author of three books and numerous scientific publications about humpback whales.
Kaufman’s lecture will feature a visual media presentation about Pacific Whale Foundation’s research in Hawaii, Australia and Ecuador. Reservations are encouraged as seats fill up quickly. For information or to make a reservation, call (808) 249-8811 ext. 1 or click here.
Evenings with the Experts
Talks, videos and slide shows by noted marine and whale experts from across the United States. The event will be held at the Westin Kaanapali from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Fri., Feb. 10 and Sat., Feb. 11. For more information, click here.
Maui's Parade of Whales/World Whale Day
Maui’s Parade of Whales is the official launch of World Whale Day. The parade starts at 9 a.m. in the Kihei area. World Whale Day (formerly known as “Whale Day”) is an all-day celebration honors the humpback whales that come to Maui each winter. The celebration, 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., spotlights some of Hawaii’s top recording stars: Willie K, John Cruz, Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real, Anuhea, Marty Dread, Hapa and Nuff Sedd. Also, there will be hula and fire dance performances. For more information, click here.
Great Whale Count
On Sat., Feb. 25, count whales with Pacific Whale Foundation’s staff, including members of its research and education teams. All training and materials will be provided. For more information about volunteering, volunteer, call the foundation at (808) 249-8811 ext. 1 or click here.
Among the 2011-2012 Maui Whale Festival’s paid events: Sunday morning whale photo safari cruises, a “VIP cruise” with Greg Kaufman, the foundation’s president and founder, an ocean camp for elementary school kids, a fun run/walk event, and a golf tournament. For more information about these events, click here.
This season’s first whale-spotting occurred on Sept. 26 in Honaunau Bay, which edges the Big Island and is within the Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. The sanctuary, which lies within the shallow (less than 600 feet), warm waters surrounding the main Hawaiian Islands, constitutes one of the world's most important humpback whale habitats.
Scientists estimate that there are 20,000 humpback whales in the North Pacific. An estimated 12,000 swim to Hawaii each winter to mate, give birth and nurse their calves in warm Hawaiian waters, where they are protected.
For additional suggestions on shoreline outlooks, check out our HAWAII Magazine's Landlubber's Guide to Whale Watching in the Islands. And don’t forget those binoculars.
To subscribe to HAWAII Magazine, click here.
Photos: Page 1 (top), David Croxford; Page 1 (bottom) and Page 2, courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) HIHWNMS: Fisheries Permit No. 782-171
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Check out these related HawaiiMagazine.com posts:
The humpbacks are back! Our guide for Hawaii whale watching season
Great Maui Whale Festival starts month of events this weekend
Maui’s humpback whales
Pacific Whale Foundation's "Maui Whale Fest" salutes Hawaii’s 45-ton winter visitor