J and K Pods!

Anacortes

Highlights:
*J and K pod orcas
*Harbor seals and harbor porpoise
*Multiple bald eagles and a bald eagle nest
*Osprey at their nest
*Black oystercatchers, rhinoceros auklets, pigeon guillemots, cormorants, and lots of gulls

We headed through the inner San Juan Islands today in order to meet up with resident orcas coming in from Canada.  Our first stop was at Blakely Island where we checked out two bald eagles perched in trees near their nest.  Our next stop was for orcas swimming northward near Henry Island.  They were pretty spread out and traveling at a good clip.  The first few whales we spotted included J14, Samish, and K26, Lobo.  Lobo swam right over toward us and we got some fantastic views of his tall dorsal fin!  Next we spotted J19, Shachi, and her family, Eclipse, J41, and the new calf, J51.  The three of them congregated for a minute near our boat to chase a fish near the surface!  After letting them go by we moved up a bit and took a good look at J40, Suttles, who gave us some of the best views of the day!  Just as they were nearing Stuart Island suddenly every one of the orcas turned right around and they started heading toward Johns Island – an unusual place to see these resident orcas.  They must have been finding some fish because they continued to circle as if chasing salmon as they went.  We saw K14, Lea, with K42, Kelp, and Lobo again.  Right as we departed J2, Granny, showed up right behind us.  Its always great to see her!  Shortly after leaving the orcas we stopped at a small rock pile and checked out some harbor seals and a couple of black oystercatchers.  Later, we stopped to look at the osprey nest on Crane Island on the way back to the dock.  Naturalist Bart Rulon

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