Video shows whale breaching in Milford waters

A whale seen breaching off Milford’s shoreline Sunday is the talk of the town.

Bobby J’s Bait and Tackle in Milford posted a Youtube video on its Facebook page that a customer, Mark Tutino, sent in showing a whale breaching in Milford waters Sunday evening.

(Because there is some strong language, we have posted some video of the video, without sound, above. But you can see the actual video below, at the end of this article)

Jason Jadach, owner of Bobby J’s, said the whale may be a humpback.

He said his customers spotted the whale about 5 or 5:30 p.m. Sunday between Welches Point and Charles Island. Tutino said he has more video that he plans to edit tonight. He apologized for some of the strong words in the video, but said, "I was excited."

“I was in my friend's boat,” Tutino said. “His name is John Horvack, and he has a 30 foot Regulator. We were out fishing for blues and were coming back from the Stratford area. We were driving toward the Bayview area when I saw what turned out to be mist from the blowhole. Didn't know at the time what it was. We stopped the boat and were looking off the bow in the area I saw the mist and it breached to the left of the boat. We didn't see it as we were looking the other way, just heard the loud crash. I turned the boat around and started trailing in the general direction we thought it was heading. That's when I got the video. The whale never breached again, just came up and rolled and took in air. Very exciting.”

Jadach said he heard that earlier in the day people had seen the whale feeding off Milford’s shore.

Experts at the  National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration agree with Jadach that it’s a humpback whale.

“Our whale people agree it's a humpback,” said Teri Frady, chief of research communications at NOAA. “There have been more sightings around the New York City area this year and last than in past years. While it's not exactly common to see them in the Sound, it's not really rare either.

Jadach speculated that the large amount of bait in Milford waters this year may have drawn the whale in.

According to the NOAA website, humpback whales are well known for their long "pectoral" fins, which can be up to 15 feet (4.6 m) in length. Their scientific name, Megaptera novaeangliae, means "big-winged New Englander.”

Adult females reach lengths of up to 60 feet, according to the NOAA website. Their body coloration is primarily dark grey, but individuals have a variable amount of white on their pectoral fins and belly.

“Humpback whales are the favorite of whale watchers, as they frequently perform aerial displays, such as breaching (jumping out of the water), or slapping the surface with their pectoral fins, tails, or heads,” the site states.

“During the summer months, humpbacks spend the majority of their time feeding and building up fat stores (blubber) that they will live off of during the winter,” NOAA explains. “Humpbacks filter feed on tiny crustaceans (mostly krill), plankton, and small fish and can consume up to 3,000 pounds (1,360 kg) of food per day.”

The full video is below, complete with sound.