The video below was made July 24 2020 off the beaches of BELMAR and Spring Lake New Jersey.
Humpback whales off the coast of New Jersey feed on Atlantic menhaden. Other cetaceans, such as fin whales and dolphins also eat menhaden. Dolphins can eat up to 20 pounds of Atlantic menhaden a day.
Standing on the ocean shores stretching from Maine to Virginia, you may have spotted the incredible sight of breeching whales, dolphins and seals along the coast. Believe it or not, this is in large part due to an oily little fish that often goes unnoticed—the Atlantic menhaden sometimes referred to as bunker.
Called the most important fish in the sea, menhaden are an essential food source for whales, dolphins, striped bass and seabirds.
Following years of unregulated fishing, The Nature Conservancy has been working with fishermen, marine scientists, charter boat captains and other partners to rebuild menhaden populations. And the results so far have been astounding. Think: porpoises and dolphins frolicking where they haven’t been seen in decades and the spectacular sight of humpback whales lunging to feed on fish schools along New York City’s coast.
Below is a video of the dolphins chasing the bunker fish