Encounters with North Atlantic Humpback Whales
Of all the vessels in the Peter Hughes live-aboard fleet, Wind Dancer is perhaps the most ideally suited vessel for humpback whale expeditions. This beefy high-bow ship is designed for long range cruising and open sea navigation. The 120 foot long ship has a cruising speed of 10.5 knots and a range of 6,000 nautical miles.
In addition to the size and configuration of this vessel, it has by far the most experienced crew for humpback whale encounters. Led by Captain Tom Conlin, this crew has developed a special non-invasive technique for approaching the whales.
Captain Conlin has spent more than 110 weeks, over ten years, on the Silver Bank learning the movements and behaviors of the North Atlantic Humpback Whales. He has developed the "soft-in-water" encounter technique that is now accepted by the Sanctuary Committee as a standard by which all live-aboard operators must adhere.
A "soft-in-water" encounter is not scuba diving nor is it aggressive swimming or free diving. Instead, it is a passive non-aggressive floating technique at the surface, using mask, fins and snorkel. This passive approach allows the whales to develop an interest in the humans and approach if they so desire.
Captain Conlin will present nightly slide show and video presentations including: anatomy and behaviors, rowdy groups, feeding, mother/calf relationships, U/W behaviors and hydrophone recordings of the songs of the North Atlantic Humpback Whale.
SILVER BANK:The Silver Bank is the largest mating/calving grounds of humpback whales in the world. This mid-ocean region is located south of Grand Turk, and about 80 miles north of the Dominican Republic.
WIND DANCER SPECS:
Departure Point: Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic, or Grand Turk
Boarding Time: 4:00 p.m.
Port of Registry/Flag: Honduras
Type: Steel Mono Hull
Length: 120 feet
Beam: 28 feet
Number of Passengers: 18
Accommodations: 9 staterooms
Number of Crew: 6 7
Length of Charters: 7 nights
Numbers of tenders: 2 (24' fiberglass)
Fuel Capacity: 21,000 gallons
Fresh Water Capacity: 5,000 gallons
Fresh Water Maker: 3,200 gallons per day
Cruising Speed: 10.5 knots
Range: 6,000 nautical miles
Navigation Aids: VHF, SSB, color radar, echo sounder, auto pilot, GPS, Gyro, weather fax
Air compressors: 2
Voltage: 110 volts
PASSENGER ACCOMMODATIONS:The Wind Dancer is equipped with 9 well-appointed staterooms that can accommodate up to 18 passengers.
Master Stateroom Main Deck, 1 queen bed, private head/shower, TV/VCR, porthole view, mirrored cabinet, full length mirror, wardrobe, bathrobes, hairdryer, toiletries, fresh towels daily.
Deluxe Staterooms Dolphin Deck, double bed (lower) and twin bed (upper), private head/shower, porthole view, mirrored cabinet, full length mirror, wardrobe, bathrobes, hairdryer, fresh towels daily.
DIVE TENDERS:Wind Dancer carries two custom built twenty five-foot fiberglass Privateer tenders. These extra wide ocean going tenders are equipped with twin engine, environmentally conscious, 90HP, four stroke Honda engines. Each tender is equipped with VHF radio, signaling device, first aid kit, oxygen equipment and a hull filled with foam floatation for safety.
These unsinkable tenders are designed for optimal service and amenities featuring navigation lights, custom tank racks, equipment storage, splash guard, camera storage area, heavy duty boarding ladder, camera rinse bucket and a bimini top for protection from the sun.
MORE INFORMATION:For reservations, or more information, contact:
Peter Hughes Diving, Inc.
Miami Lakes, FL 33014