We had absolutely stunning autumn weather this year. It extended far into November, and even a little into December. Long time locals couldn’t remember the last time we’ve had such beautiful late November & December weather.
Everyone on the island is in the holiday spirit! Downtown Friday Harbor is decorated with beautiful twinkling Christmas lights. Nearly every storefront has gone all out with their decorations! Even the lamp posts have HUGE lighted snowflakes. Friday Harbor is even more quaint, charming, and magical than in the summer…who could have thought that’s even possible .
On to our lovely marine mammal reports!
Both J and K pods were in Saratoga Passage. A number of the orcas were feeding close to the beach, along a tide line. Obviously good fishing!
Three humpbacks slowly moving through Jervis Inlet, Saltery Bay, BC.
Southern Resident killer whales looked like they were headed NW into Haro Strait, and then we started to hear calls sporadically on the Lime Kiln Lighthouse hydrophone from 11:00am to 5:30pm.
Two humpbacks feeding on Halibut Bank, in the Strait of Georgia.
Up to 15 T’s off Victoria and most were traveling West. 4-5 of the Ts were going East. The same Transients were spotted near Race Rocks later in the day.
5 Transients in Monterey Bay, California! The CA138s, CA217 (Chopfin), and CA171b together. They successfully hunted a large harbor seal about 7 miles SW of Moss Landing, CA.
Js and Ks (and probably Onyx L-87) were heard vocalizing continuously on the Lime Kiln & Orcasound hydrophone between 1am and 6 am!
Five orcas (most likely Transients) were reported just north of Nanaimo BC. They were headed north in Northwest Bay near about 50 sea lions, which were “going crazy.” There was one male possibly one baby in the group.
More California killer whales! 8-9 orcas were spotted about 4 miles offshore of Ventura Harbor, CA. There were at least 4 calves and a maybe three females and a large male.
Two orcas (most likely Transients) were spotted in Case Inlet (South Puget Sound). They did a series of long dives just south of Vaughn Bay for about 15 minutes before they took off towards Heron Island.
J pod, K pod, and L87 Onyx traveled slowly down Admiralty Inlet. They were spread out for miles apparently foraging for salmon as they swam the entire expanse between Whidbey Island, the Kitsap Peninsula, and Marrowstone Island. They stayed from 9:45am until at least dusk. Their calls were very clear on the Port Townsend hydrophone!
We also had one single transient come through the Haro Strait. T31 was spotted at Race Rocks. Later in the afternoon, there was a faint call on the Lime Kiln Hydrophone at 4:11pm and then a two other faint Transient calls at 4:25pm.
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