Sea pandas on the move!!!

Port Angeles

Highlights:
2 humpbacks in the morning
J16 sub pod in the after noon
Lots of bird life
Great group of harbor seals at the end
Sunny skies

Naturalist log:

The day started off nicely with the clouds parting the skies, the sun shining down and a light wind blowing through from the north. In no time at all we found ourselves onboard the island explorer 4 headed toward open water.  We rounded the end of Ediz hook and began cruising northbound in search of the ever illusive whales. It wasn’t long before one of our passengers spotted some humpbacks from the upper deck. At first they took what seemed like forever to surface but as we got watched their down time did shorten a bit. We got a few good fluke shots before having to depart the scene. After the humpbacks we again continued north passing by large groups of common murres and marbled murlets. Soon we made it to Bueamont shoal where we were joined by the J16 group of fish eating sea pandas(orcas). We were getting great looks at J26 “Mike” when only a few yards away, two more humpbacks surfaced!!!! It was amazing to see the two species in the same area like that!!! The humpbacks gave one good fluke shot before pressing on to the north and so we continued south with Mike and his family. Soon we had the rest of the J16’s including two young calves passing by us right of our starboard stearn. Alki, Echo, Scarlet and Sonic were all grouped up and having a very fun family play time. There were a few spy hops and some failed attempts to breach, all in all it was a spectacular showing. After Mike waved goodbye with his fluke we continued south back toward Port Angeles. We passed a massive group of harbor seals on the end of Ediz hook before returning back to the dock and celebrating an amazing day!!!

Naturalist log by Tyson
Photos by Alethea Leddy

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