Capt. Scott and crew members, Mika, Jen and Lindsay, took the Ocean Magic II vessel out of the harbour with many international guests on board. Our mission this afternoon, for both trips, was to head east to San Juan Island, in USA waters. We travelled east in search of reported Orca. These were members of the Southern Resident Pods, J, K and L .They had been reported earlier in the day swimming off shore of the west side of San Juan Island. This area is one of their preferred areas to forage for Chinook Salmon. We did find several playful members of these pods on arrival. These are the Salmon eating Orca that are generally seen most days, at this time of year. They were actively foraging and showing some social activity that included tactile behaviours. A few breaches and spyhops were also observed. It was amazing to watch. Several of the youngsters that swam together were most boisterous. The oldest female, J 2, aptly named ‘ Granny ‘, who at 102 yrs old, is sometimes seen, on occasion, to baby-sit youngsters. This afternoon she was close by the playful youngsters. A quick stop at Trail Island gave our guests looks at Harbour Seals that lounged in the sunshine. This was another memorable trip.
Most of the images on the blog are shot with a 400 mm & 600 mm telephoto lenses. Because of our restrictions around wildlife (100+ meters), we use powerful lenses to better share orca activity that passengers see on their trips. Keep in mind this also heavily compresses space between objects. We also crop images for best blog viewing.