Our tour this morning was jam-packed with exciting wildlife encounters and extraordinary behaviour from one of the five Humpbacks we observed.
It all started before leaving Alder Bay when the resident family of River Otters decided to share some family fun on the dock only meters away from us. They tossed and tumbled over each other creating an otter bundle, ignoring us as we silently observed and took photo’s.
Once underway, we were struck by the numerous pairs of Bald Eagles sitting on the ground along the shores of the Pearse Islands. Their delicate calls echoed out towards where we drifted. Other interesting bird sightings consisted of a single Hummingbird that flew at an impressive speed right across our bow when we were at least a mile offshore. As well there was the first sighting of a raft of Red-necked Phalaropes that daintily tapped at the water creating only the slightest of a ripple.
Harbour seals in great numbers sat high on the rocks as low tide approached and numerous Dall’s porpoises surfaced above the glassy calm sea. At one stage we enjoyed watching them bow ride another vessel, then they came to join ours when the other boat slowed down. They like a certain speed when wanting to draft alongside a vessel.
We thoroughly enjoyed watching our local humpback whale Guardian forage in the strong ebb current, her distinct fluke rising high to the sky when about to deep dive.
Our highlight today was the numerous times Humpless’s (also known as Slash) calf breached+++, spyhopped and slapped the ocean surface with its pectoral fin. Again and again we could see various limbs appear from the water then leaving behind a mass of white water as it landed. Side by side they swam, mother and calf, a bond you so rarely see but know so dearly that it is always a privilege to witness.
Wearing wide grins, we ventured home, under a blue sky bright with sunshine!