In Westernport Bay and around Phillip Island and Wilsons Promontory you are likely to see at least two dolphin species all year round, while in the winter months you have a very good chance of seeing Humpback or Southern Right Whales too! Killer whales and sharks can also be spotted occasionally – every one of our cruises gives you the opportunity to look for any of these magnificent creatures.
- Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops australis) grow up to 4m and are grey in color. They swim in smaller pods of up to 30, and are often seen in Westernport Bay foraging for food.
- Short-beaked Common Dolphins (Dephinus delphis) are smaller than the bottlenose dolphins and have a distinct hourglass light grey to yellowish pattern on their side. They usually swim in larger pods and love to ride the bow of the boat.
- Humpback Whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) are dark blue with a white ventral (belly) side and very long flippers. Their name is derived from the way their backs arch when they dive. From May to October humpback whales migrate from Antarctic waters along the Victorian coastline, which is the best time to join our Winter Whale Cruise for your chance to see these majestic creatures.
- Southern Right Whales (Eubalaena australis) are smaller but heavier than the Humpback whales. They are nearly black in color and move slower. They can sometimes be seen in quite shallow waters of Cowes or San Remo jetty.
- Killer Whales (Orcinus orca) occasionally visit the waters around Phillip Island as seals make up an important part of their diet. These whales are the fastest swimmer of all the cetaceans and can reach speeds of more than 50km/h while hunting.
Did you know? Most whales and dolphins live long lives. Wild bottlenose dolphins live well into their forties, while some of the larger whales live in excess of 80 years!