There is always something to find when one takes a Prince of Whales wildlife trip out of the harbour of Victoria. Capt. Jeff and crew members, Biologists Mika, and Jen sure knew where the whales were heading as we set off from the dock and headed east and north to locate the Southern Resident Orca. We could see several members of all three pods, J, K and L, when we encountered them moving fast across Boundary Pass and up toward South Pender Island. The whales were seen firstly in American waters close to Stuart Island but then they crossed the boundary line and headed into Canadian waters, where J 8, ‘Spieden ‘, one of J Pod older females, born possibly in 1933, popped up suddenly to the surprise of everyone. She had changed directions several times. It is always so wonderful to see these charismatic whales chasing after the salmon which is what they eat. These are wild, marine mammals and can surface any where even if they generally appear to be traveling in a strait line. The scenery all around was awesome as the weather was relatively calm with plenty of sunshine. Mt. Baker always looks fabulous on a sunny day. Our guests on board enjoyed the education component of the trip, and were all smiles when we returned to the harbour.
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.