Both types of Orcas! Dall’s porpoise! Incredible humpback steals the show!


-Multiple bald eagles
-Marine mammal eating orcas
-Fish eating orcas
-Dall’s porpoise
-Incredibly playful humpback whale

Our trip began with a most wonderful sign that we were going to have a wonderful day! A mature bald eagle soared over the boat as we exited Cap Sante Marina! We were on the search as we made our way toward the south end of Rosario Strait where we had another mature bald eagle who was actively circling where a bait ball had dissipated due to his presence. The other birds were going crazy, harassing the eagle until it finally flew away from the commotion, right past our boat! We continued to the south side of Colville Island where we spotted several harbor seals hauled out and another mature bald eagle perched on a sign. We continued toward the west and it wasn’t too much longer before we came across our first orcas of the day! They were marine mammal eating orcas, T49A and her family, T49A1, T49A3 and T49A4. We did a quick fly by, just enough to ID them, because within less than a mile, there were fish eating orcas! They were heading the same direction! We caught up with members of J and K pod who were spread out foraging. We saw K21 (Cappuccino), J19 (Shachi), J41 (Eclipse), J51 (Nova), J16 (Slick), J26 (Mike), J36 (Alki), J52 (Sonic), J42 (Echo), J50 (Scarlett) and K25 (Scoter) (more IDs to come). There were also some incredibly active Dall’s porpoise that were swimming in and around the orcas! They were going super fast and one even hooked up with our bow for a minute! It was exciting! We got back to watching orcas and continued south, along the shoreline, catching up to the marine mammal eating orcas! We got there just in time to see T49A1 break off from his mother and siblings and take out a little harbor seal! He flung it out of the water with his tail! Amazing! Then, the rest of the orcas began a little celebration, breaching, spyhopping, cartwheeling and tail lobbing! Eventually, we had to head off toward home port, but not before we had another spectacular encounter! We found two humpback whales and ended up with one on either side of the boat. One whale fluked for us, revealing that it was MMX0006! The other humpback was in the process of taking out a baitball, so we headed in that whale’s direction. And, boy, were we lucky! Even though this whale never showed us his fluke, he stole the show, but rolling around, over and over again, slapping his pec fins on the water! He kept coming our way, it looked like he was backstroking! The sound of his pec fins hitting the surface of the water was so loud, it sounded like fireworks! We were all delighted to enjoy such an experience! We spent extra time with him, as we just couldn’t leave! But, we were running really late, so we had to head back home after three different types of whales and NO rain all day! It was certainly a day we won’t soon forget!

from Blogger


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