Orcas & Humpback whales ~ a beautiful day!

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As we were departing on our tour this morning Orcas were reported travelling East off Donegal Head and were already entering Johnstone Strait through Weynton Passage on our arrival at Weynton Passage; pushed through by the flooding current they quickly crossed over towards Vancouver Island. These A5 pods have been in the area frequently in recent weeks and were quickly identified as being the A23’s and A25’s, six orcas in total. We observed as the A43’s (A43, her daughter A69, and A69’s calf, A95) began travelling east, close along the Vancouver Island shoreline, A60 was a distance out from them, as were A61 & A85. A light mist partially obscured the Vancouver Island shoreline momentarily and quickly cleared and we had beautiful visuals of all of the orcas, especially of A60, A61 and A85. The orcas were quiet and did not vocalize during our time with them, they continued to the east but had slowed their pace from their initial entrance into the Strait. Humpback Whales were sighted throughout our tour, at least five were sighted in the area of Johnstone Strait and Weynton Passage and there were large gatherings of gulls with herring ball activity in evidence in Johnstone Strait today. Travelling back through Weynton Passage we encountered several Stellar Sea Lions in shallow waters with one hauled out, as well as a Humpback Whale. It was a great day for viewing Cetaceans in the area of Johnstone and Blackfish Sound; the A30’s were also in the area, spending most of the day foraging off Bold Head. Also seen today: Dall’s Porpoises, Harbour Seals, an Eaglet high in branches by its nest and Bald Eagles, a Double Crested Cormorant, Rhinoceros Auklets, Pigeon Guillemots, Red-necked Phalaropes, Common Murres, Belted Kingfishers, Fork-tailed Storm-Petrals, Cassins Auklets, Oyster Catchers, Numerous Gull species including some unfledged gulls.

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