Whale Watching Merimbula
During the winter months Humpback whales leave their feeding grounds in the Antarctic bound for warmer tropical waters where some will calve and others mate.
Although the whales pass Merimbula on their northern migration, most are in a hurry and further out to sea. It is on their southern migration during spring (September to late November) that provides the best whale watching opportunities.
At the start of the season it is mainly sub adults, followed by mother/calf pods which quite frequently come right into Twofold Bay, giving the calves a chance to rest.
Other species including Southern Rights, Blue, Dwarf Minke, Bryde's, Orca, Pilot, Sperm and several species of Beaked Whales have also been sighted off the coast of Merimbula in recent years.
As well as charter vessels which take passengers out from Merimbula to watch the whales at sea there are some great places to do shore based whale watching. To the south of Eden, Green Cape and South Head in the southern section of the Ben Boyd National Park are excellent vantage points to spot whales.
The Pacific Whale Foundation conducts research into the Eastern Australian Humpback population in Queensland and also include Eden as a vital link for their ongoing research. This includes taking photo ID of whales flukes which helps in their estimation of population and migratory routes.
Research is also being undertaken by other groups interested in offshore species such as Sperm, Orca and Beaked Whales.
From the early 1800s until 1930, whales were hunted at Twofold Bay, Eden. Men in open wooden boats, assisted by a pack of Killer Whales hunted various species of whales for their oil and bone.
This amazing whaling history is documented in the Eden Killer Whale Museum with a skeleton of a Killer Whale named Tom on display. Whaling continued in other parts of Australia until 1978 and by then, most species of whales had been hunted to the point of extinction.
The Eden Whale Museum sounds a siren when whales are in close proximity to vantage points around Twofold Bay.
Mural at Eden Killer Whale Museum
Old Toms Skeleton at Killer Whale Museum