AUGUST 3, 2015
10 / 02 / 2016
We crossed paths with Blanche no fewer than four times this summer. The previous season, we had observed Blanche with a newborn. Excellent news: this year, we saw her again with her second-year calf. In French, belugas of this age are known as bleuvets. The first year of a beluga’s life is the most perilous. The fact that the calf has survived thus far is very encouraging for the fate of the population. Below is an account of one of these encounters.
August 3, 2015: Blanche is swimming in a herd of some twenty adult and young belugas. They form a long line heading up the mouth of the Saguenay Fjord near Tadoussac Bay. She swims with her second-year calf, which constantly switches sides while never straying too far from its mother. They are in the company of another female, who is also accompanied by a newborn. Upon reaching the waters below the Pointe-Noire observation site, the line draws in tighter and the animals begin to engage in “milling”, which consists of swimming in circles and diving and resurfacing multiple times at the same spot. This behaviour is often associated with feeding.