Sunshine and zodiac tours watching transient Orcas - what a perfect start to this Sunday!
It’s been an amazing week on the Salish Sea with sunny weather and 22 straight days of daily whale sightings!
We've had some amazing moments this week! Our passengers and crew who had the extraordinary opportunity to see the newborn calf, L-119 double spy-hopping and playing with Mom (L-77)!
Calf's less than a year old have orange colouring on their white patches, also known as the saddle-patches. All of the orcas from the Southern Resident population are fish eaters, not mammal eaters, and all together there are about 85 orcas. The L Pod, in particular, has 41 members, making it the largest of the three groups. These orcas feed mostly on Chinook salmon, which are the largest species of Pacific salmon, thus making them the most nutritious fish for the resident orca to hunt. The Chinook salmon move from the open ocean, up the Straight of Juan de Fuca, and enter freshwater rivers like the Fraser River to spawn and then die. The Southern Resident Orca population follows these runs, making the waters off Victoria and the San Juan Islands one of the best locations for observing resident orcas in the world.
Almost an entire pod was out this week and it was an amazing site to see all the whales together. It was also been an incredible week for our avid birder passengers. We've had multiple sightings of Black Guillemots, Rhinoceros Auklets, Brandt's Cormorants, Great Blue Herons, and of course, our resident favourite, the stunning and majestic Bald Eagle! We also had the chance to see the largest and oldest L-pod male, Mega (L-41).
By far, our most amazing moment of the week was getting to watch humpback whales lunge-feeding. This spectacular behavior is rarely seen in Victoria. Lunge-feeding is a behavior in which the whale lunges at its prey with its mouth agape. When lunge-feeding, the throat of the whale expands and the baleen plates are clearly visible hanging from the roof of the whales upper jaw. It is a behavior that many of our team only sees a few times in their career! Did you know that male humpbacks are the only whales that can sing? Males sing during the mating season to attract females and warn other males of their presence. A male's song is a series of exact notes that lasts an average of 20 minutes before it is repeated.
Check out our Captain's Log to read every detail from each trip we take.
We're looking forward to sharing more amazing moments and amazing photo's with you! If you have not had the opportunity to experience the magic of viewing the amazing wildlife in person, come and see us soon!