Captain Kerry Lopez

Recognised as the only female Captain owning and skippering a whale watching venture in the South Pacific Rim.

Our Captain

Kerry is a successful businesswoman, Captain and mother, working tirelessly on promoting local tourism and protecting our environment.

Kerry worked as a deckhand on board a spectator craft for the 1987 Americas Cup, before enrolling in the Fremantle Maritime College as the only woman in a class of 30. One of only five students who graduated from the 2 year course, Lopez was forced to do a practical exam and became the second woman in Australia to get her Class Five Master Mariners Certificate. Lopez left the west to search for work around Australia.

Two years later and she had enough sea time with tour operators and merchant marine work to study for and receive her Class Four Masters Certificate. Arriving in Brisbane, she began work as a skipper on the boat Cat O’Nine Tails taking people to St Helena Island and then on Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef.

Our History

With her crew of dedicated seamen who respect and understand the Humpback Whale, Captain Kerry Lopez is the only woman captain operating a whalewatching venture in the South Pacific Rim.

Back in Brisbane, one day in 1990, Kerry noticed a pod of Humpback Whales in Moreton Bay. Her dream was to promote public awareness of the need to preserve these creatures and their environment. Kerry capitalized on her own love of whales, and current environmental interests, to establish Moreton Bay Whalewatching- now operating as Brisbane Whale Watching.

Kerry saw there was a need for an up-market, high-speed passenger boat that was different from the slow, wooden vessels that commonly operated in South-East Queensland waters. After negotiating a deal for a 16-meter catamaran and obtaining a whalewatching permit in 1996, Moreton Bay Whalewatching, now operating as Brisbane Whale Watching, was born.

Kerry holds one of only two commercial whalewatching cruise permits in Moreton Bay Queensland, Australia and is dedicated to the protection of Humpback whales. In 2000, Moreton Bay Whalewatching Tours – now operating as Brisbane Whale Watching hosted the International Humpback Whale Conference and ‘showcased’ the magnificent whalewatching waters of Moreton Bay to delegates from throughout the world.

Today, Kerry heads the team at Moreton Bay Whalewatching, now operating as Brisbane Whale Watching, which brings in excess of 12,000 visitors to the Redcliffe Peninsula during June-November. The tour is recognized both nationally and internationally.

Book your whale watching tour today!

Transfers from Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast are available. Tours commence Saturday the 8th of June 2024 through to November. Departing Redcliffe 7 days per week.

Did you know

  • Whales have little or no sense of smell or taste
  • They have a very sensitive skin that is easily sunburned
  • Remarkable eyes with strong muscles that change the shape of the lens so they can see in the air or underwater
  • Incredible hearing ranging over many kilometres for navigation, communication and finding food
  • Calls or songs that travel hundreds of kilometres
  • Pectoral fins that are ten times longer than your arm
  • Flukes that often feature black and white markings on the underside which can be used to identify individual whales
  • The longest and most varied sign in the animal kingdom
  • An average weight of 45 tonnes which is about 1000 children together
  • An average length of 15 to 17 metres which is about 10 adults lying head to foot
  • An eye the size of a grapefruit
  • Whales have a belly button
  • Calves that are fed daily over 400 litres of rich milk which is the consistency of condensed cream
  • An expelled breath or ‘blow’ that reaches a speed of between 300 – 500 kilometres per hour as it exist through the blowhole

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