Today we headed out in full force with both boats, the Sea Lion and Kittiwake. We heard a few rumors of Big Black Fish milling around Lime Kiln so we headed in that direction. As we passed South Beach we saw our first group of dorsal fins break the water surface ( Haro Strait, 48°26.27N 123°01.48W).
Big “Mike” (J26) somehow made his way into a group of female K’s including “Raggedy” (K40) and seemed to be looking for a hot a date! He was definitely showing off what he’s got, wrestling around, and strutting his stuff. We figured we’d let him continue his pursuit and head west into open water to catch up with Cappuccino (K21).
We rode alongside Cappuccino (K21) for a bit. He was just chillaxin’ by his lonesome, milling around, doing his own thing. His pace was great for us though! We were able to cut the motor, watch him slowly emerge from the water, releasing large, exuding blows, and glide back slowly into the water. His actions were so smooth it caused passengers to grow silent, awestruck by the size and serenity of this amazing creature, living and breathing beside them.
There were also a number of other groups both from J-pod and K-pod spread out in the surrounding area fishing and what not. The Kittiwake got to ride with both Blackberry (J27) and Polaris (J28). We ended up leaving the whales still milling around in the same area at approximately 3:30 PM.
All in all, it was another unbelievable day amongst our Southern Residents!
Naturalists Tara and Shelly, San Juan Safaris