With the start of the new year, the Littoral Society began a series of eco-cruises in partnership with the Seatstreak Ferry. While the 3-hour excursions - which will continue out of Highlands, NJ every Saturday through the end of March - are predominantly for seeing seals and birds, we saw some unexpected visitors during the inaugural voyage.
Unfortunately, we didn't see huge numbers of seals - likely due to high tides covering their preferred haul-out spots. However, we were very fortunate to encounter two or three juvenile humpback whales! While whales are becoming increasingly common in this area, they are more typically seen in the spring. For many of the more than 60 people onboard, this was their first time spotting a whale.
During the trips, Littoral Society staff and trained naturalists guide participants in spotting and identifying various wildlife, while also discussing the lives and habitats of what we see. Depending on the days route, we may sail by landmarks such as the Verrazzano Bridge, Roamers Shoal Light, Coney Island, Sandy Hook Light and others spots around Sandy Hook.
During the cruise we also viewed and discussed the following wildlife:
Find dates, times and tickets for upcoming eco-cruises are available at the Seastreak website.