Local January 18, 2011 | 12:59 pm

The whales are here!

Santo Domingo.- The whales are here! The shout is heard along the coast of Samana peninsula, where the humpback whales gather annually in a ritual of mating and songs.

As the migration southward has begun in earnest, it’s estimated that of 600 of them will come from the North Atlantic, to mate or calve in the Samaná Bay Marine Sanctuary.

The Environment Ministry’s official inaugural of the 2011 whale watching season was held yesterday, with the opening of the first on shore facility to observe the giant mammals, at Punta Balandra, east of the town Samana..

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