A glorious calm day for viewing Orcas, Humpback whales and so much more!

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Today’s sightings: Orcas, Humpback whales, Dall’s porpoises, Stellar sea lions, Harbour seals, Bald Eagles, Black-tailed deer, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Marbled Murrelets, Common Murres, Red-necked Phalaropes, Black Turnstones, Pigeon Guillemot’s, Belted Kingfishers and Gull species.

It is a delight working within a whale watching community that when on the water; information is shared in regards to where the whales are. People are working together, communicating sightings and helping each other whenever needed. This information is also shared with the researchers, so they too are utilizing the resources of having boats and eyes on the water.

Our skipper heard a report that Orcas were traveling in the fast expansive open water of the Queen Charlotte Strait. Thankfully the weather was working with us today as the visibility was crystal clear and the sea conditions calm.

The Orcas were spread out, reaching from one island to another with miles in between. Amongst the pods of Orca foraging were foraging Humpback whales so at times we could see both species surfacing at the same time. With the Mainland Mountains in the background and picturesque islands and islets in the foreground, birds patiently waiting for a bait-ball to drift by and the sounds of blows in the distance, it was a wonderful feast of mother nature at its most abundant.

As the food multiplies so does all the critters that forage in these parts. Our bird numbers are rising, the Sea Lions are moving in, soon more dolphins will be sighted on a daily basis and once all the Eaglets and other chicks are fledged, the trees and sky will be clouded with bird life.

Peak season from the animal’s perspective will soon be upon us. How amazing it is to see them successfully hunt and forage, keeping their specie alive and thriving.

Seasmoke Whale Watching photo’s have been taken with a telephoto lens by Dave Jones and have been cropped.

A30’s, A23’s & A25’s + Humpback Whales ~ a relaxed and wonderful day with the whales!

We enjoyed a beautiful day of breathtaking scenic beauty and wonder. The day was a lovely one with not a breath of wind and the orcas seemed to enjoy as well the quiet morning; they were travelling very slowly east from where we first encountered them near the Bauza Islets. We identified the A30’s: A50 and A54 and their calves and also the A23’s, while A38 was seen initially foraging a distance away as well two more orcas were further ahead, the A25’s. Relaxed and leisurely they all swam together, against the ebbing current and going nowhere fast, we observed playful interactions between the younger calves which included jostling, spyhopping, tail and pectoral slapping. They gradually made their way close in along the Vancouver Island shoreline where A38 joined them and they all continued travelling slowly east. We carried on through Weynton Passage where we observed two humpback whales, two more could be seen further out in Blackfish Sound with another making its way towards Weynton Passage off Donegal Head. We enjoyed cruising through the waterways of the Plumper Islands, looking at bald eagle nests high up in the treetops and kelp forests, all glistening brightly in the sunlight and looking so beautiful today! Also seen: harbour seals, a stellar sea lion, dall’s porpoises, fork-tailed storm petrels, bald eagles and newly fledged eaglets, rhinoceros auklets, common murres, belted kingfishers, great blue herons and gull species.

Today’s penned comments: “A generous offering of natures beauty and sea life in the context of gracious hospitality – tea and scones! Thank you.” ~ Judith, Bowen Island, BC

“So appreciate your excellent guidance through this incredible vista after vista, natural history accounts and marvellous things to eat.” ~ Alison, Arizona

“We had an extraordinary experience with the orcas and enjoyed the hospitality of the crew very much. Thank you so much! ” ~ Adriana and Heinz, Switzerland

“This was a fabulous journey and we never had this before. Thanks for your wonderful trip! We would like to do it again.” ~ Amy & family ~ BeiJing, China

“Thank you Maureen & Mike! What a wonderful day I had onboard Seasmoke. The food, the company, sights and weather were all wonderful!” ~ Barb, Ontario

” Maureen’s passion and love for nature and the birds, mammals and the changing light is so exhilarating. The Tuan trip is such an experience. ” ~ Pat, Alert Bay.

“Beautiful BC at its absolute best from a sailboat up close! Islands, kelp forests, seals, birds – and whale watching….accommpanied by hot scones and tea! Thank you so much – a great day! ” Thea, Vancouver BC

“Many thanks to beautiful BC and you guys once again and no fog. All the best.” ~ Marty, Alert BayIMG_3395 IMG_3471 IMG_3489 IMG_3503 IMG_3507 IMG_3546 IMG_3563 IMG_3572 IMG_3577 IMG_3578 IMG_3580 IMG_3585 IMG_3590 IMG_3599 IMG_3611 IMG_3613 IMG_3617

Humpback whales, Orcas and bow-riding Dall’s Porpoises ~ Brilliant viewing!

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Dall’s Porpoise

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Dall’s Porpoise bow-riding

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A46

It was a fantastic and sunny day of viewing in calm, sea blue waters. Our first humpback whale blow was seen off the Plumper Islands in Weynton Passage and with the ebbing current, we were soon out in Blackfish Sound with a whale named Cutter, another Humpback whale was seen due north while two more were further down in Blackfish Sound. A small group of Dall’s Porpoises were seen feeding close along the Plumper Island shoreline and as we observed them, they made their way to the bow of our boat and rode playfully along for a considerable distance. It was absolutely wonderful to see them gliding, streamlined below us and as we watched they darted off, only to return and ride at the bow again and again. For some passengers on board S.V. Tuan today, this was the highlight of the tour! Orcas, the A36 brothers: A37 and 46, were the first Northern Resident Orcas to arrive back into the area yesterday afternoon making their way in, easting off Donegal Head and down through Blackfish Sound. Their echo locations were heard by Orcalab from their hydrophone in Robson Bight this morning and they were seen heading to the west off the Sophia Islands. We were excited to see A46 travelling west and near to Cracroft Point where we left him approaching Cracroft Point but seemingly going nowhere in the current that had turned to flood, he was possibly waiting for A37 to catch him up. We did not get a visual on A37 who yesterday was seen travelling a considerable distance behind his younger brother and while we scanned and scanned we did not see A37, he may well have been in the Robson Bight Ecological Reserve. It was wonderful knowing that the two brothers were still travelling our local waters together and that they were the first orcas to arrive back this summer. Also seen today: harbour seals, rhinoceros auklets, bald eagles, glaucous-winged and mew gulls and belted kingfishers. IMG_4173 IMG_4180 IMG_4184 IMG_4189 IMG_4231 IMG_4243 IMG_4253IMG_4121 IMG_4136 IMG_4138 IMG_4139