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Beluga pod captured on our underwater cam

Beluga pod captured on our underwater cam

Belugas know how to have cheeky fun

Beluga Cam Captain Hayley Shephard gives us an expert’s take on the playful, and trusting, nature of these curious whales.

“The unpredictability of the Beluga whales fascinates me. Once again we were forced to journey deeper in to the Estuary where the brackish water gave the Belugas a ghost-like appearance on our underwater camera. But this time was different. It seemed as though we were adopted by a pod of Belugas.

Not even an hour into our ‘tour’, a pod of about 6 to 8 individuals approached our side and did not leave. They not only porpoised beside us, and dove below us, two juveniles seemed to want to physically touch our boat. They nestled themselves beneath the pontoon at the back of the boat, rubbing the tops of their head and upper body on the rubber tube. I hung my head over the wooden transom where the engine sits, to watch this intense visit. The young beluga knew I was there and on occasion, let out a burst of bubbles from its blow hole. I felt as though it was deliberately trying to spray me. The Belugas are known for this ‘playful and cheeky’ behaviour and I was delighted with the interaction.

As we ventured closer towards the mouth of the Churchill River, the water turned an Emerald Green and outstanding images were captured on the underwater camera. For a few moments we had a mother with a newborn calf, nestled by her side. So trusting they are to approach this man made vessel, but perhaps we are part of the many lessons that calf will be taught by the intimate bond with the mother. And how privileged we are to be trusted.”

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