Have You Seen Any of These?

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Sunshine - Calm Seas – Orca !

After over a month of no whale, dolphin or porpoise sightings out in front of Powell River, we finally had some Orca – see report below. Other reports from the past few days have indicated there were Northern Resident Orca at the top of Johnstone Strait as well as Southern Residents in Puget Sound.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

January 11:
12:30 pm just after discussing the lack of sightings with a regular contributor to Whales and Dolphins BC Sightings Blog in a store, I received a call from Bill Taylor that there were around 7 Orca just south of Powell River headed in my direction.

1:15 pm By the time I got down to the skiff, I spotted blows by VanAnda, Texada Island. There were a couple of breaches as the Orca slowly made their way towards Powell River. They were quite spread out with some closer to Grief Point and others hugging the Texada shore when a couple of them popped up in the middle of the strait. The two big males in the lead disappeared pretty quickly, but there was at least one other male and two juveniles. With the spread, it was very difficult to get a definitive count, but there were between 11 to 14 whales total. I dropped the hydrophone and through the boat noise, I did hear a few calls as well as some echolocation. They sounded more like Resident Orca, than Transients, but with all the boat noise, it was not enough to be sure of who. Once the video clip (my still camera is in the shop) is reviewed, I'll be able to pull a photo for the blog and get a proper identification. The majority of the Orca headed out between Texada and Rebecca Rocks towards Vancouver Island while the last two went out closer to Harwood around 3 pm. Once home, I spotted a few of their blows heading North-West towards Sentry Shoal.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

January 10:
Around 12 pm A call came in that there was just one blow spotted behind one of the shrimp draggers working out in front of Powell River. There were no dorsals or additional blows seen.
Steve Grover