Another sunny day in July on the west coast and the Ocean Magic slipped its berth and headed out of the harbour. Capt Jeff, and crew members, Casey, Mika and Claire headed the vessel toward the east in search of Minke whales near Hein Bank. We found a familiar whale with a small notch in its dorsal fin. It would appear that this whale returns to this area year after year since it has been photographed before. We watched it along with a couple of other Minke whales that were foraging for small schooling fish. There was plenty of small bait fish around as the sea birds, the Rhinoceros Auklets, were milling with fish hanging from their bills. We soon left the Minke’s to travel further north to find the Southern Resident Orca , the L 22’s, a family group of three individuals that had been seen foraging and traveling along the west side of San Juan Island over the past three days. We found them, a female with her two sons, traveling along the shoreline. Always wonderful to see these charismatic wild animals in their ocean habitat. On our way back to Victoria we had good looks at a few Harbour Seals basking on low lying rocks.
Marie, “Orca-Magic”, Clint, “Orcawizard”.
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.