Have You Seen Any of These?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Dalls, White Sided Dolphins and Humpack Whale

To start I'd like to mention that I did test the link from yesterday to the nautical charts from NOAA and they only work for US waters. The rest are as blotchy and blocky as they've always been, I do not know if downloading it would interfere with the actual CHS charts for Canadian waters, so I would not recommend it for anyone using their computer for charting our Canadian waters. I put it on a system that is not used for actual chart work.

As for today, there were Dalls Porpoises, Pacific White Sided Dolphins and a Humpback. The Orca have departed again. These whales over the past while have been in the area for a couple of days and then disappeared for a couple of days only to reappear. There are whales around, but they are very good at hiding for a couple of days at a time.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

May 31:
5:45 pm A radio call from the ferry, Powell River Queen, to Aaron of Campbell River Whale Watching gave a heads up of a Humpback Whale mid-channel between April Point and Painter's Lodge. The whale was headed Northward.

May 31:
Hi Susan. I had 2 harbour porpoise by Elk Bay at 415 pm. Other than that just the Lags (short for Lagenhorynchus obliquidens the Latin name for Pacific White Sided Dolphins - SM). And 150 sea lions at Mitlenatch and a few were Californians. Cheers. Garry (Aaron counted around a dozen California Sea Lions - when you have that many, it's a bunch - SM)

May 31:
2:45 pm During one of my scans I spotted 5 or 6 Dalls Porpoises looking like they were foraging just off Westview, Powell River heading towards the mill area. About and hour or two later saw what I believe were the same Dalls off the N. end of Texada slowly heading into Georgia Strait.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

May 31:
2:15 pm Call came in from Garry, Aboriginal Journeys about Approx. 20 or so Pacific White Sided Dolphins at the N. end of Mitlenatch Island. They were slowly zig zagging in a foraging / feeding pattern.

May 31:
11 am First overheard on the radio from unknown sources that there were very playful Dalls Porpoises just by Hole in the Wall. A little later, heard Fog Horn Jeff, Painter's Lodge saying that there was a large group of Dalls that were there and putting on a lovely show.

In other Reports:
Thanks to Jared Towers for assistance with the IDs on yesterday's Transient Orca - a few more nicks than what we have in out photo ID books. SM:
From his photos I recognize T124A2 and T124C. The juvenile may be T124A3 and the other animal with the nick may be T124C again. T124C's dorsal fin has a bit of a bend so s/he can look a bit different depending on the angle.  Jared

Two more photos taken May 30th by Garry Henkel, Aboriginal Journeys

Above Photos of Transient Orca May 30th from Garry Henkel, Aboriginal Journeys

And from Farther South:
May 31
Wildlife galore today!  We departed Friday Harbor with a northbound heading up into the waters of Canada, with a few gray harbor porpoises traveling with us and a silver harbor seal peering at us from the ocean. Off in the distance, we spotted five vessels off Saltspring Island, Canada.  They appeared to be observing some transient killer whales.  As our boat--the Sea Lion--got closer, we were able to identify a large male orca with a hooked or oddly notched dorsal fin.  He was later identified as T87.  Other vessels identified his companions as "the T90s," which would be T90 and a calf from 2005, T90B.  We did notice a calf with the group of five and thought that because of its small size it may be a calf younger than T90B. 
The pod continued to zigzag around the boats and, at times, under the boats appearing on the other side of us after four to five minute down times. Word from another vessel told us that close by there was a dead harbor seal with Bald Eagles foraging on its carcass.  Off we went!  Not too far from the live safe warming seals, we found the dead one.  At least four eagles were spotted in the trees and one bald eagle was at the carcass ripping shreds of meat off it!  No dead sea creature is wasted out here. Along our final approach to Friday Harbor, we saw two more harbor porpoises and even in the harbor by our slip we saw another harbor seal.  Yup, another piece of potential transient orca food, but this one safely swimming about the harbor, foraging for its own meal.  
Serena, Naturalist, San Juan Safaris, San Juan Island, WA
Submitted by: Susan Berta and Howard Garrett, Orca Network 

May 31
We  stumbled on Transient orcas today to the south of Saltspring Island and then followed them into the Saanich Inlet, just off of Piers Island.  They were somewhat elusive and kept all the boats guessing.
Bill Freedman Submitted by: Susan Berta and Howard Garrett, Orca Network