Orcas had been reported heading north in Blackney Passage earlier this morning and with this in mind we headed out in the direction of Blackfish Sound. Due to overcast cloud cover with the colour of grey being reflected back on the water the visibility for sighting into the distance was poor. We continued to scan well out into the Queen Charlotte Strait and back towards Malcolm Island sighting a Minke Whale briefly as we travelled further out into the Strait. At one point, in a simple and lucky glance, some fins were seen disappearing from sight and finally when they reappeared it was exciting news that orcas had indeed been sighted in the lower portion of the Queen Charlotte Strait out towards the Penfold Islands. There looked to be two groups of orcas initially and as we drew closer the A34’s were identified as one group while two orcas, a female and a male were further ahead in the lead and another large male was sighted closer to the Penfold Islands. The lead orcas were later identified as A12 travelling with A37 (one of the A36 brothers). It was wonderful seeing A12 again in the near company of her daughter A34 and A34’s off-spring, and also in the company of the A36’s brothers. As we turned to head back, A32 and A46 who had been foraging in the far distance, were seen travelling together making their way towards the groups and it seemed as though a turn back to the east was imminent. On the way home we stopped to view the Stellar Sea Lions numbering 90+ hauled out; it was good viewing them as always. Other species also seen today were: Dall’s Porpoises, Harbour Seals, Bald Eagles, Red-necked Phalaropes, Rhinoceros Auklets, Common Murres, Great Blue Herons, California, Glaucous-winged & Herring Gulls.

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