Year of the Whale? We know it’s really the Year of the Horse, but with all the sightings of whales just off the Southern California shores, these behemoths are foremost on our minds. And what better way to celebrate cruising cetaceans than by spending time at our Santa Monica Pier Aquarium during “Whale of a Weekend,” Feb. 15 and 16?
The annual migration of the Pacific gray whale is one of the longest migrations of any species, some10,000 to 14,000 miles round trip between the Arctic seas and the warm lagoons of Baja California, Mexico. This migration takes the whales past the Santa Monica Pier, sometimes within viewing distance from the west end observation deck.
Whether migration patterns are changing or the whales are multiplying at a much greater rate, the result is twice as many sightings of the gentle giants heading south now compared with a year ago. To help celebrate, we've put together a number o engagement opportunities.
Whale of a Weekend at the Aquarium offers the public a chance to touch bristly baleen, feel the heft of a whale’s rib or try on a layer of (simulated) whale blubber. Spying for whales from the West end of the Pier is easy with our naturalists on hand to provide binoculars and field guides. Even if you don’t get to holler “thar she blows!” an afternoon of learning about whales and checking out the more than 100 species of marine life on exhibit at the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium is a great way to celebrate the Year of the Whale - or the Horse!