Have You Seen Any of These?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Breaching Humpback Whales and Orca Report

What a great sight while having morning coffee! After so few reports of any Cetaceans and stormy weather making them difficult to even spot in the white caps, seeing Humpback Whales breaching certainly set the tone for the day. And a smile on my face. As anticipated, we are getting these huge animals coming down the inside between Vancouver Island and the Mainland. I believe the earthquakes off the West side of Vancouver Island have something to do with that. Keep your eyes open. A quick scan of the water can sometimes provide a great treat and Whales or Dolphin sightings to report.
Win a Cruise for Two Draw date: March 16, 2013
I apologize for the delay in getting this report out.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

Humpback Whales
Breaching Humpback Whale
Spectacular leap from such a large animal
Susan MacKay, SG Images

November 18:
7:45 am One Humpback blow and back was spotted Southbound off the Northwest tip of Texada. It was a brief sighting as the island obstructed my view.
A few minutes later, as I watched a tug taking huge sprays in front of Powell River, a huge Humpback Whale breached a short distance behind. It was an enormous splash! Then another huge leap, totally out of the water and splash, then another. Wow! Then two Humpbacks breached side by side....what a show.
Within ten minutes, I counted a total of 15 breaches between the two Humpbacks. These two were between Rebecca Rocks and Harwood Island slowly working their way towards Vivian Island. Until 8:50 am there were around six more breaches as I watched the blows from these two together and at least one, possibly two other blows farther apart. They rounded the tip of Harwood angling North-West with the tide.

Not wanting to call anyone too early on a Sunday morning, I sent out a text message feeling that someone else needs to enjoy this incredible sight. I heard back from Stephen Mohan, Powell River who said “Cool! I'll have a look.” And shortly after one of the full breaches, “Holy cow!” and “Wow that was great!” Unfortunately, no other reports came in about these Humpbacks.
Susan MacKay, Whales and Dolphins BC

November 10: (late report)
Between 11 am and 12 pm Two Humpback Whales were seen from the ferry off Saltrey Bay towards Hardy Island.
Carol Adamack, Powell River

Breaching Humpback Whale
Leaping more than once!
Susan MacKay, SG Images

Orca – Killer Whales

November 17:
Possible Orca sighting by the Powell River mill. The 'fins' would roll very slowly and change direction and seemed animate. Depth would vary too and sometimes they'd seem to sink out of sight only to pop back up again soon thereafter. The air spouts were probably not more than a foot tall using the nearby gulls as a reference but scale is so hard to judge from such a distance. Not much in the way of answers I know. If it made sense to me then I may not have even thought to have asked you though I can see now that any report is probably better than none. (We are still sorting through some information and photos to determine if these were Orca or what with the sea lions.n And yes, any report is better than none! - SM)
Peter Harvey, Powell River

November 14:
4:25 pm Report of a pod of between 20 to 30 Orca by the red can buoy off of Cape Mudge, Quadra Island was announced over the radio. Garry Henkel, Aboriginal Journeys took a drive and walked his dog along the shore hoping to catch sight of them. Between us, we couldn't locate the vessel that had reported them by radio. Unfortunately, even though it was a calm day, he didn't spot them before having to call it a day in the fading light.

I have been asked a number of times if Humpback Whales lunge feeding ever catch birds since birds are also feeding close by. I had seen one this past year open his mouth to let a Rhinoceros Auklet, a small diving bird out. Here is a link showing a Pelican inside the mouth of a Humpback!

Breaching Humpback Whale
Landings are impressive too!
Susan MacKay, SG Images