Beautiful A & G-Clan vocals, Dolphins and Humpback Whales!

 

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas, Humpback Whales, Dall’s Porpoises, Pacific White-sided Dolphins, Steller Sea Lions hauled out ++and swimming, Harbour Seals, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Common Murres, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers and Gull species.

The sun was bright when we set out this morning and a lovely day it turned out to be. We encountered Orcas, the A30s and I115s travelling to the west near Kaikash and observed them foraging as they made their way steadily to the west. With our hydrophone deployed it was wonderful listening to the mix of both A & G-Clan vocalizations! There was also a group of some 20+ Pacific White-sided Dolphins travelling nearby the Resident Orcas, they were seen near Kaikash and in Blackney Passage and we had a really nice time viewing them.

Eight Humpback Whales were out there this morning including Slash and her calf, Ridge, and Freckles while another four were seen further away. It is always exciting to see Humpback Whales as their blows can be seen from a long distance away and seeing them at close range as they surface and dive is truly a treat to see!

Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. Photos have been taken with a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

A day of surreal beauty ~ Residents and Bigg’s (Transient) Orcas and Humpback Whales!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas, Biggs (Transient) Orcas, Humpback Whales, Steller Sea Lions hauled out and swimming++, Harbour Seals, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Red-Necked Phalaropes+, Common Murres, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Great Blue Herons, Black Turnstones and Gull species.

It was a wonderful day, beginning with sightings of incoming orcas (I15’s) who were seen in very foggy conditions. We had good visuals of the I4s, of I4 and I76 in particular! Their G-Clan vocals heard via our hydrophone were fabulous to listen to and so different to the A-Clan vocals that we have been hearing throughout the summer. There were four Humpback Whales seen this morning and while we were stopped and listening for blows in the fog, one surprised us when it surfaced and then dived under the boat, a surreal experience for all of us to see it passing nearby in the white void of the fog!

On the afternoon tour, we were surprised to find orcas nearby just as we were departing from Alder Bay. How incredible it was to see the 6-7 Orcas passing to the west and quickly so for they were travelling fast! Identified were the T109s (T109, T109B with a new calf), T012A was also identified.

There were four Humpback Whales seen on the afternoon tour and a Steller Sea Lion was swimming nearby the boat with many seen hauled out. Increasing numbers of Rhinoceros Auklets and Common Murres were observed in the vicinity today and cloud like flocks of Red-Necked Phalaropes were more abundant as well.

The sunshine this afternoon felt so good after the stillness and dampness of the morning fog but all of it was breathtaking and beautiful!

Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. All photos have been taken with a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

Exceptional viewing of Orcas ~ the A30s and A42s!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas, Humpback Whales, Dall’s Porpoises, Steller Sea Lions hauled out and swimming! Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Common Murres and Gull species.

The beautiful weather continues and with it, sightings of Orcas! On the morning tour we enjoyed viewing the A42s as they slowly made their way east from Izumi Rock and watched while they entered into the Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve. They were very social and there was a lot of interaction between the two Matriline groups, they were also extremely vocal and we all enjoyed listening to their A-Clan calls. Afterwards, four Humpback Whales including Freckles and Guardian were also observed.

Our afternoon tour was very exciting, the current was flooding and the orcas were foraging intensely in the tide-rip in Blackney Passage. The A30s and the A42s were feeding together and several breaches, tail and pectoral fin slapping was observed. It was exhilarating to watch all of their energetic activity and listening to their A-Clan vocalizations while they foraged was fantastic! Seven Humpback Whales were also observed on this tour with several of them fluking. It is always a beautiful sight to see as well as bait balls with gulls feeding++, another great sign to see in our waters!

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Photo Credits: Muriel Halle and Seasmoke Whale Watching. All photos are taken with a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

A42s in the sunshine!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas, Humpback Whales, Dall’s Porpoises, Steller Sea Lions, Harbour Seals, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Red-necked Phalaropes, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Pigeon Guillemots and Gull species.

We spent another glorious afternoon in the company of sunshine and the A42s. The Matriline were spread out and foraging near Blinkhorn and we were able to listen to their beautiful A-Clan calls via our hydrophone as they foraged. We observed when they formed a resting line and began crossing Johnstone Strait heading in the direction of Cracroft Point, it was a wonderful sight to see!

Our time viewing Humpback Whales was fabulous, there were four that we observed, all were feeding together near Donegal Head and they included: Guardian, Freckles and Towers. It was an incredibly beautiful day with calm seas and sunshine galore!

Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. All photos are taken with a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

A fantastic day! Resident and Transient Orcas and Humpback Whales!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas, Biggs (Transient) Orcas, Humpback Whales, Steller Sea Lions, Dall’s Porpoises, Harbour Seals, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Red-necked Phalaropes, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Black Turnstones and Gull species.

What an incredible morning for viewing marine life! We first encountered the A42’s who were foraging west from Kaikash to Blinkhorn while on our hydrophone we were able to listen to their beautiful A-Clan vocalizations! Afterwards we observed two Humpback Whales, one we identified as Argonaut. Meanwhile, the Bigg’s (Transient) Orcas, T059 & T041’s who had been reported earlier travelling east along the north side of Malcolm Island, we observed them first in heavy current porpoising fast around Stubbs Island and watched as they made their way close along the Plumper Islands shoreline while the Steller Sea Lions quickly hauled out of the water just ahead of them!

It was an amazing morning, with so much variety in the wildlife sightings and endless activity that was happening all around us to watch, seemingly at the same time!

Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. All photo’s have been taken by a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

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Orcas: A42s, frolicking Sea Lions and Breaching Humpback Whales, again and again!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas: A42s, Humpback Whales, Steller Sea Lions, Dall’s Porpoises, Harbour Seals, a White-tailed Deer, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Red-necked Phalaropes, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Black Turnstones, Black Oystercatchers, Common Murres, a Great Blue Heron and Gull species.

The A42s were there again, feeding inside the Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve, they were also spending quality time at the rubbing beaches! We cannot enter into the Reserve and so our viewing of the orcas when they are inside the Reserve is from a distance of a 1000 metres.

As well today, on both of our tours we enjoyed numerous Humpback Whale sightings with four whales observed on the morning tour and twelve on the afternoon tour. The Humpback Whales identified were Freckles, Lucky, Maude and her calf, Frosty, Ridge and Zig Zag. A rare visitor to our area, this particular whale was sighted for the first time this summer only yesterday and was seen breaching ++ in Johnstone Strait on the morning tour. The activity we observed by the Humpbacks today was mostly lunge feeding and some fantastic breaching!

Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. All photos have been taken with a telephoto lens and have been cropped.

Orcas ~ in and out of the Robson Bight Ecological Reserve today and Humpback Whales!

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Today’s Sightings: Northern Resident Orcas: A42s, Humpback Whales, Steller Sea Lions, Dall’s Porpoises, Harbour Seals, a White-tailed Deer, Rhinoceros and Cassin’s Auklets, Red-necked Phalaropes, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Black Turnstones, Pigeon Guillemots and Gull species.

Today found the A42s in Johnstone Strait, in the morning they were travelling east through Blackney Passage into the Strait and then they made their way into the Robson Bight (Michael Bigg ) Ecological Reserve. Inside the Reserve boundary they spent long hours hunting salmon in the Bight and they also spent time at the rubbing beaches! Later this evening they left the Reserve and commenced  travelling back to the west, foraging as they went, close along the Vancouver Island shoreline. Their A-Clan vocals were beautiful to listen to via our hydrophone as well as their echolocations. Humpback Whales were also seen today, Squiggle and Ridge were among those we observed and there was some breaching activity seen from a distance.

Travelling back towards the west and the sunset with the moon rising high behind us, it was a glorious way to end the day!

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Photo Credits: Muriel Halle. All photo’s have been taken with a telephoto lens and cropped.