August 2014 Whale Sightings
Summarized Sightings map HERE
A person who helped bring a stranded and deceased harbor porpoise to be examined by the Central Puget Sound Marine Mammal Stranding Network mentioned that they had seen a small group of orcas in Penn Cove
Around 2 pm - Port Madison Sighting. 4 orcas
entering Port Madison on the North end, traveling. - Jon Seibert
Just off Kingston. This little orca
was providing a great show! - Michele Auseth.
Off Presidents Pt just south of Kingston
, at one point a seal was 50' off my stern. The orcas had gone under a hundred yards away off my bow. I looked back at the seal just in time to see a black and white torpedo take it down. Amazing sight! - Scott Orness
WOW! 2 minutes from Salty Towers dock and we find a Grey Whale right in Sooke inner Harbour!
Rare to see. - Sooke Coastal Explorations
8:15 PM - Whale sighting just off Waterman Point in Sinclair Inlet. Three orcas
very active, breaching, and tail slapping. Watched them for close to an hour from dusk to dark. Could still hear them after we couldn't see them any more. Very rare in these parts so they say. - Lorrie Miller
6:30 - At least two orca
were playing in the wake of the Evergreen State ferry heading to Vashon
. - Chris Ruffini
they just passed Restoration Point on Bainbridge
heading south. I am heading to the next place to look. Closer to Kitsap as they went past the point, but east of the red buoy.
moved to Rockaway Beach on Bainbridge
. They are slightly south of me near the yellow bouy. At least 4
heading south. South of Alki
lighthouse moving fast. - Connie Bickerton
Ken Balcomb relayed reports of a group of Transients in the Canadian Gulf Islands
this afternoon, heading down Trincomali Passage and through Active Pass into the Strait of Georgia.
Hard to mistake T065A's
dorsal. That's what it looked like from the photos I saw posted at least. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu
Orcas seen from Fay Bainbridge Park
as they headed south past Bainbridge Island at 345pm
this afternoon. - Tim Cuddy.
4:03 pm - 4 orca heading South from Rolling Bay, Bainbridge Island
. Looks like 2-3 adults and 2 juveniles. - Nicole Bav
9 am -
Ken Balcomb reports possible Transients heading south from Double Bluff, Whidbey Island
10:30 AM -
Orca Sighting off Port of Brookings, OR just off Chetco Point.
While out fishing off Port of Brookings an Orca
surfaced about 10' off our boat. We were trolling for salmon (salmon derby) and out of nowhere he/she cruised by! Solid shiny dark steel gray/black, fin curved, estimate about 21' in length. Definitely an Orca
; came up for breath while I assume was chasing salmon. Which by the way, salmon catch for the derby that day was WAY down this year. He/She swam out in the direction of where at least 50-75 boats were salmon fishing about 2.5 miles off shore Port of Brookings (section 17) and swimming out to sea slightly southward. We were about 2 miles off shore from Port of Brookings and north about .5 miles (Chetco Point)in 112' of water. This is second sighting w/in approx. a week. I phoned in 1st sighting. I assume feeding on Salmon or traveling. It was during the salmon derby and it (or they) swam out towards where all the boats were trolling for salmon. We were heading back in to Port but I saw it (or they) surface several times while swimming out towards the boats. I just don't know if it was the same one that surfaced by the boat or a different one each time. I never saw more than one surface at once though. - Jessica Wiltrout
2:00 PM - Saw about 4-5 transients in Welcome Pass off the Sunshine Coast, BC
, Canada. They were heading north along the coast. There was at least one large male and maybe an adolescent. They were breaching and also doing many tail flops!! - Laura Wenn
Orcas at 10:48 am to 11:25 just off Lime Kiln
, west side of San Juan Island, coming from south, but turned back south. - Sherrie Stahl.
Ken Balcomb reports some combination of J and K pods were off False Bay
3:46 - 7 orca pod going south Trincomali Channel
near Active Pass. - Roland Flutet
Quick but close encounter between Saltspring Island and Prevost Island
. The pod
headed straight towards us, and we just had time to turn the engine off that they were upon us - or rather, under us! Apparently 7 different orcas
in that pod heading north east and then turning south east in the Trincomali channel
, most likely towards Active Pass (at that time, the tide was heading out to the Strait of Georgia, making it an easy crossing). - Ro Land
popped up right in the middle of a group of orcas
on Matt's 4:30
trip! Very unusual behavior for the two species to be so close to one another, but we didn't mind! - Alanna Brennan, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Ken Balcomb reports two humpbacks off the south end of San Juan Island
, and two humpbacks were also seen in Porlier Pass
in the Canadian Gulf Islands.
We watched J and K pod off San Juan
in spectacular conditions. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whale Whale Watch
1:20 pm - Orcas at South Beach
right now. - Vickie Doyle
4:24 pm -
RL Sayers reports in posts by others a single orca off Lime Kiln at 2:30 pm
heading south, and now near Whidbey Island.
We had three trips with the T137s and T37s
in some pretty choppy water! Whew ... here's to calm water! Transients aren't always flashy after they make a kill like most of my other pictures depict. Sometimes they just make a kill and keep going. Yesterday, we watched as three whales flew threw the air at the same time killing a harbor porpoise, then they seemed to eat on the go (prey sharing). These guys would make a kill then go back to business! - Heather MacIntyre
We found the T90's, T124's
as well as a third unknown group off Saturna Island
. The whales' behaviour was pretty typical to start, then all of a sudden they picked up speed and starting pursuing a harbour seal! And they got it! - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whale Whale Watch
11:06 AM -
Sighting on western side of Admiralty Inlet
. OMG!! First sighting on this side of Sound near Port Ludlow
(near Hood Canal). It is raining so I had been looking through telescope at rock outcropping to see how Birds Cormorants and Seals and Gulls were dealing with rain when right near outcropping an Orca was swimming .. was so excited I forgot to look for identifying clues!!! I eventually lost him as he headed South. Since the particular outcropping I was watching is where seals are daily sunning/sleeping, so assumed they were searching for food. - Kathleen Raffo
5:53 pm - Faint calls on Lime Kiln
behind motor noise right now. - Else Jean Jensen
9:34 - Just headed south past San Juan County Park
. - Charky Ptera
9:25 am - Js and Ks vocalizing on both OrcaSound and Lime Kiln hydrophones
8:40am - K pod vocalizing on OrcaSound
. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
8:49 am - K pod!
I wonder if this means the Campbell River J's and K's have returned. - Melisa Pinnow
8:44 - Orcas on hydrophones
... - Vickie Doyle
Headed north around San Juan Island and met up with a beautiful group of transient killer whales in the middle of the Haro Strait
right on the US/Canadian border. Today we were fortunate enough to see the T37s and the T137As
. - Emily, San Juan Outfitters
As they made their way through Boundary Pass
, they saw a group of transients known as the T137's
and they made their kill right beside the boat! - Alanna Brennan, Prince of Whale Whale Watch
Orcas!! Bigg's transients again
: 5 minutes outside of Snug Harbor! T137s and T37s
in challenging seas, racing! Ninth encounter: going for a tenth sighting, this time from shore! - Alisa Schulman-Janiger
8:00 am -
Whales in Saratoga Passage
. My daughter was out in the dingy and says she saw at least 3 whales. Looks like a male and a female between Fox Spit and Langley
. Looks like they are patrolling rather than transiting. - Jacques White
7:30 this AM
on way to get gas! Ts right outside of Snug Resort
, my dock! - Capt. Jim Maya.
7:30 PM -
We are volunteers for FOLKS doing our Thursday night Lime Kiln State Park lighthouse
tour when we spotted two Humpback Whales
, which traveled north not far from shore ... 5 to 10 minutes between dives ... both very close together. Saw tails on their dives. - Kelly Andrews
Orca Sunset! We watched members of K Pod and L Pod
for over an hour this evening. They were widely scattered over several miles. We saw at least ten whales at South Beach
within a half mile of shore, heading slowly down the coast; one huge male breached twice, and they milled for a while. We backtracked to Lands End and watched more whales heading down the coast; these were close enough to hear blows and a lobtail! We saw a few breaches after sunset. Great end to our day! - Alisa Schulman-Janiger
We saw a humpback and calf at Race Rocks
in intense fog, then the rest of J pod came in with some Ks (K21, K16's)
later on. It was so nice to see the rest of J Pod again, and such a nice surprise. - Heather MacIntyre
Sightings off Port Townsend. Same pod seen twice in day
, 6 hours apart, once from water and once from shore. 1 male, 2 females and one adolescent. 7 miles west of Point Wilson
. 200 yards off North Beach in Port Townsend at 20:10. At 14:00, small pod seemed to be traveling east towards opening of Puget Sound from the Strait. At 20:10, it seemed to be same small pod feeding/foraging along the shore of North Beach. A kite surfer in the area has an amazing story when pod surfaced 50 ft away. - Christina Cogan
We just received a call relaying a report of an orca in Penn Cove
this evening at around 7:45 pm
, called in by Sammye Kempbell who got the report from their neighbor. They are in the Captain Whidbey end of the cove, and the orca was traveling toward Coupeville.
8:17 am -
Sighting off Hansville
. Orcas just sighted going east from Skunk Bay then east of Norwegian Point. - Leonard
Victoria Clipper III just left them, 1 mi NW of Lagoon Point.
They are northbound, looks like they are hunting along the tide rip. - Stephanie Raymond
3 pm - T137's
approaching Admiralty Head
southbound. - Michael P Colahan
Mom and calf Humpback Whale
today near Race Rocks! It was pretty intense watching them in fog that engulfed us all. You couldn't see much more than 200 yards away in any direction. Luckily, these two whales popped up after a long dive right next to Legacy. - Heather MacIntyre.
The Pacific White Sided Dolphin
that has been hanging out in the south Puget Sound for a couple months was in front of the Point Defiance Boathouse
for about half an hour this morning around 10am
. It did several jumps 8-10 feet in the air and was staying real close to the fishing boats. - Bryan Owens, Tacoma Wa.
Pacific White-Sided Dolphin
sighting! Took our little boat out around 8:15am
this morning and we were so fortunate to again see the dorsal fin of the white-sided dolphin thats been seen around here the past few days. He/she was about 15 yards in front of us and surfaced a few times before disappearing for the rest of our ride. Short as it was, always amazing! This was at the south-east side of Maury/Vashon Island and Three Tree Point.
He\She was there in the same spot last Sunday afternoon, between Maury Island and Three Tree Point / Normandy Park. It was traveling - just saw the dorsal fin surface 2 or 3 times and then it was gone. - Jen LaGrutta
Good morning! Here's another shot from yesterday's encounter with Bigg's killer whales
. This is a behavior we call a cartwheel. Upon closer inspection of the photo, it makes me wonder if this orca wasn't trying to launch one of the little common murres sitting on the surface into air. You can see there are a few small birds in the image and one in particular behind the splash of the whale's flukes. Just missed! Sometimes young transient orcas will play with birds, perhaps to hone their huntings skills. - Katie Jones.
We were out on a whale watch on Tuesday and spotted 8 to 12 Southern Residents off of Oyster Bay / Miracle Beach (north end of Georgia Strait
, about 15 miles south of Campbell River) on Vancouver Island, BC. I was just so excited to see Southern Residents up there. I do have photos of the saddle patches if you are interested. They were in the resting mode traveling south. After about 20 minutes, they were waking as I spotted barrel rolls, breaches, tail flops, spy hops and exposed bellies. It was amazing! - Jodi Mitchell-Ulriksen
6 pm - Southern residents off Campbell River
. - Josh McInnes
Oh, just more flying whales. Great morning with Bigg's (transient) killer whales in President Channel
. - Katie Jones.
12:55pm - Orcas spotted between Sucia and Orcas Island
right now. - Karlynn Elliott
Heading west from Victoria, we caught up with the T18's
, a charismatic group of 4 transient orca, easily recognizable because of T19B
. He's about 19 years old, and hasn't quite grown into his fin, to the point where it leans dramatically over to one side. Meanwhile in Vancouver, they were looking at different transients! They found a huge group consisting of at least 20 whales. Likely the T36A's, T37A's, T65A's, plus another unidentified group. In the afternoon the T18's were too far west to check out, and the big group of transients split in to more normal sized groups and headed our way. We caught up with them in San Juan Channel. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Mark Kudraz called to report seeing at least 8 orcas at 9 am from the Pigeon Point Lighthouse in south San Mateo county, California
. They were several miles offshore, headed slowly south. A few of them looked like subadult males.
Today in San Juan Channel right outside Friday Harbor
. We got to spend time with this humpback whale
. Note the distinctive split fin. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu.
A pacific white sided dolphin
danced around the boat. Darn near got in the dingy! Played with us for 1/2 hour :-) - Tim Ferris.
Whales in Active Pass 7:50 pm. - Gary Cullen.
Seven year old Echo, J42
leaps out of the air after reaching the west side of San Juan Island
on Sunday. I love her personality, she's so spunky and curious! Definitely one of my favorite J Pod members, along with her brother (J26). - Photo by Heather MacIntyre.
It was another interesting mix of part of J-Pod and part of K-Pod that headed up Swanson Channel
towards the Fraser River in the evening. In the mix was J32 Rhapsody
, pictured here. The whales all stayed well north off the mouth of the river yesterday. - Monika Wieland.
A nice look at K22 Sekiu
this evening while out with Legacy Charters up in Swanson Channel
. - Monika Wieland.
does a great cartwheel! (AKA tail throw, peduncle throw, or tail breach). Several lobtails and some sharking under a wake trail preceeded this exuberant display. Wonderful trip with Ivan Reiff and Katie Jones. With Carla Mitroff. (I took this cell phone photo of the image display on my camera; no computer on this Whale Safari!). - Alisa Schulman-Janiger.
3:25 pm - K pod came back in. Northbound with J. Henry Island to mid strait
. 6 yr old K42
Kelp with his MUCH bigger brother, 21 yr old, K26 Lobo
. Today in Haro Strait.
Severely backlit but these two guys are just too cool not to post. - James Gresham.
Woke up at about eight in the morning and heard the breathing of orcas
as they headed south past the south end of San Juan Island
. At twelve, I saw Group A of J pod (plus the J22's) and all of K pod (minus the K21 crew?)
swim north past the house in a big resting line. But where was Group B of J pod? Soon after, I watched the same orcas from Lime Kiln State Park
as they continued north. I was there for about an hour. At around four, I returned to Lime Kiln and saw Group B (including the J16's and L87)
and L pod (probably minus the L12's and L54's)
swim north. The orcas then all turned around and came back south. I believe Group A of J pod and K pod did not turn around but kept north for the Fraser River. I returned home a few minutes before seven. Saw around sixty one orcas today all together. - Melisa Pinnow
8:15 AM - 4 Orca
, 3 female 1 male orca, traveling south from Lime Kiln
. - Aena Falcetti
Enveloped by fog atop Kanaka Bay I could see on the west side cam Haro Strait was free of it. And, I was sure I saw an orca on that little camera
so off I went. 7:45am...Three, a bull and two females
(or female and young male) in the still of the morning foraging off West Side Preserve trending north. She came north past me and then the lighthouse, the male stayed mostly south, the 3rd came even with me at the south end of the park...then they all turned south. All filled up with morning bliss I had to leave to come pack up. I hope we see them again before we leave this beautiful island. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
About 1.5 miles off Point No Point
. My husband saw this humpback whale
this morning while out fishing. - Karen Wagoner.
Had an islander post pictures of what by my eye looks to be a pacific white sided dolphin
that was by their boat near pt. Defiance
today. They only saw one and it stayed close to them for close to an hour. - Amy Carey.
4-6 orcas at lime kiln from 4:30 to 6:00 tonight
. - Kate Burge Henifin
J-2 Granny Still Sparkles :) estimated 103 years alive! - Caroline Armon, OnBoard Tours Whales.
Out with Island Adventures on their maiden voyage from Port Angeles
. We thought we would see Humpies...but Granny and lots of J pod
were hanging in Canadian waters!!! - Elyse Sollitto.
J POD!! We saw ALL of J Pod
today, along Lime Kiln
, with James Mead Maya! Granny, Onyx and all of the gang were together for a while (first time in many weeks) before splitting into A and B
, amongst much breaching and spyhopping. The water glassed out; absolutely amazing!! Carla Mitroff's first time for residents: wow! They were going north, then a bit south. Granny and L87 hanging in tight to Lime Kiln at the end, foraging behavior. Double-Stuff and Oreo just to the north of them. They started off a bit offshore. - Alisa Schulman-Janiger
It sounded like there weren't going to be any whales around today, but then the westbound J-Pod turned around and came back in!
Here's J34 Doublestuf with another whale off Land Bank this evening. - Monika Wieland.
Whales and weddings...Late afternoon with part of J pod at Lime Kiln
. The pod was very spread out and just a few whales went past the lighthouse, Granny being one. On her return south she passed within 5-10 feet of the rocks. I had just meandered up to the picnic table and missed being that close to her but was still impressive, what an amazing whale is she. And just as the wedding couple finished exhcanging vows up in the lighthouse two Humpbacks surfaced to the south and continued north. Ed and I also had the pleasure to finally meet the other Alisa... Alisa Schulman-Janiger and her buddy Carla Mitroff up from California with whom we shared this beautiful Sunday sunset. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
All of J-pod!
They were first seen milling around Constance Bank off of Victoria
and traveled towards San Juan Island throughout the afternoon
. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whale Whale Watch
4:20 pm -
Unknown number of orcas at Point No Point
. Heading south. - Patty Michak
A caller reported a single orca traveling south past Lagoon Point at 9:07 am
9:30 am -
Unidentified whale headed south seen from Lagoon Point
. - Patricia Prochaska
Cow and calf humpback off Lime Kiln
, northbound. I photographed them about 40 minutes later at San Juan County park. - Tom Nowak
Not only were the orcas a bit of a surprise on the west side
last night, but there were two humpbacks
out there too! - Monika Wieland.
spotted one and one half miles north/northwest of Point No Point
. I was motoring a 30' sailboat north through Admiralty Inlet when I spotted what I am fairly certain was a lone humpback
. I first spotted it at 11:30 am, off Point No Point, and continued to observe it in the same one half mile square area for about 30 minutes as I passed through (I did not stop). The whale appeared to be feeding; it would surface and spout three to four times before arching it's back and showing it's flukes, apparently diving, staying down for five to ten minutes. It was not moving in any particular direction and seemed to have nearly completed a full half mile wide circle when I last observed it. It seemed vigorous and moved fast. From the closest observation distance of around 50 yards, I would estimate the size as around 30', give or take 5'. This combined with the large, clearly hooked dorsal fin and dark blue/black color leads me to believe it was a humpback and not a gray whale. I hope this information is helpful for your web site and I appreciate very much your keeping record of these sightings. - Colin Minch
Some kind of whale
passed by Hansville
. Mid-channel. It blew several tall spouts of water and the only thing I saw was that it didn't have the tall dorsal fin of an Orca. Maybe that Humpback? Anybody else see anything? It was heading north. - Judy Anderson Roupe
J32 "Rhapsody" does an areal scan, flanked by J27 and J39 on her left, J26 and J34 on her right. Hussy. - Tasli Shaw.
I went out to see the whales with Wild Whales Vancouver and we saw Jpod
(my fav) and captured these images. Taken down near where the coal docks (south of Vancouver)
. - Stephen Ellwood.
We spotted some of J-Pod north of Active Pass
. - Alanna Brennan, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Orcas in Active Pass, 8:45 am
- Karoline Cullen.
Biggs killer whales near Java Rocks
(Canadian Gulf Islands). Isn't little T065A5
cute? Terri Mitchell captioned this "Surrounded by love". - Photo by Jill Hein.
A Transient/Bigg's orca near Pender Island
holds an adult harbor porpoise, an act seldom photographed. - Sina Drewermann.
Some transient orcas around Pender Island
. These were the T65's, T36's and T124's
. They were using teamwork to hunt the porpoises and managed to make 2 kills! Afterwards, they put on quite a show for our passengers as they celebrated their accomplishment. - Alanna Brennan, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
We have lived in Washington for just a year and a half and I saw my very first siting today! 4 orcas swimming just a mile or so south of the Clinton Ferry on Whidbey Island
. They were heading south. - Rhonda Collette
K42, K14, and K36
. We headed south because we had reports of whales near False Bay
. By the time we caught up with the whales they were past Lime Kiln on the west side of San Juan Island. We had a great afternoon watching K pod fully intact, and traveling close together. - Kevin Clumback, San Juan Safaris
Members of K & L pods traveling southbound at 4:15 past West Side Preserve/Land Bank
(taken from atop middle pull out). - Alisa Lemire Brooks.
K33, K25, K43, and K12
moving up the west wide of San Juan Island
. - Heather MacIntyre.
9:54 - Mostly K's maybe some J's
. - Spencer Domico
7:00am, went out scouting, saw a few whales at Hannah Heights milling, then went north to Land Bank to see if any were north or southbound, didn't see any...headed back to Hannah and got a text from Connie about 7:15 calls on LK
(thank you) some loud so raced up there to see one off LK but didn't get handle on direction as I was driving. Down to LK no whales...saw blows and spy hops south at Land Bank
....so they went south in the wind, fog and white cappy seas. Which whales I do not know but they are here and I met two more lovely women and a sweet dog name Uluru! - Alisa Lemire Brooks
Things started out spotting a close knit family of K-pod traveling together off shore of San Juan Island
, the K13's; a family of 7 who often travel together in a very tight group. The family is made up of K13, her four children, and two grandchildren! The whales spent all day going up and down San Juan Island, accumulating whales as they went. As the day marched on the K14's showed up and then the K12's, until all of K pod was in attendance! - Jennifer Dickson
On August 20th, Js and Ks were up north by the Fraser River all day
and Ls were westbound out the Strait of Juan de Fuca
. By the end of the day, however, word was Js and Ks were southwest bound from East Point
and at least some of the Ls had flipped and were coming back east
. Curious to see where everyone would end up in the morning, I went out to Lime Kiln early on August 21st. Sure enough, around 7:00 a few whales came up from the south
, then flipped and went back. It turns out most of K-Pod (at least the K12s, K13s, K14s
, though I think I saw K35 in there too) and maybe a few L-Pod whales were there. A friend told me she heard K-Pod on the hydrophones when they came down during the night, but Js must have turned back up north, as they were found off the Fraser River again. If Ls came back in, there were only a few of them, but I only saw them in poor lighting and wasn't able to confirm. This group did the westside shuffle all day - I saw them as they headed south from Land Bank around 4:15 PM. - Monika Wieland, San Juan Island
Witnessed a white sided swimming with L's
again yesterday! - Thomas Cowan.
Looking north - T037 heading north, surfacing in the Strait of Georgia
. - Heather MacIntyre.
Looking west - L87, Onyx
surfacing with his silhouette in the sunset. - Heather MacIntyre.
Best night ever watching Orcas. Hands down. Transient superpod and Residents coming down at East Point
as well- in the sunset. I think I died and went to heaven!! Just pure magic. (Later Heather posted the below rendition of the very rare experience of encountering large numbers of both Residents and Transient/Bigg's about five miles apart at the same time.
Transient Super Pod, August 20, 2014 (and Residents)!
Wow, the orca sightings this summer have just been off the chart!! Killer whales are one of the world's most widely distributed mammalian species; there's actually ten different ecotypes (differing in their genetics, morphology, pigmentation, social structure, and vocalistic traditions entirely). The differences between each are entirely based on the different survival strategies they have, which are necessitated by their choice of prey. Biggs Killer whales, also known as Transients, are one of the ten ecotypes found throughout the Salish Sea. They feed on marine mammals, and are very good at exploiting that prey resource. Usually they are found in small numbers, in groups of four- six. When you have a smaller pod, it's easier to ambush intelligent prey! However, we saw 25+ transients in the same area, a phenomena known as a superpod.
It's very rare to see a group of Transients this large. We also got to met up with the other ecotype found in these waters, the Southern Residents, coming south from Point Roberts in the sunset
. These orcas feed on salmon. The two species are known as sympatric species, existing in the same geographic location, but not competing for food or resources. It was probably one of the best nights of my life. The serenity of it all was just magical. Enjoy the photos, and please share with your friends! - Heather MacIntyre
T065A's with T065A
being the 4th whales from left to right. Little T065A-5
is to the right of her. T037A
is leading. - Heather MacIntyre.
We were happy to have great weather and 20+ Killer Whales from "L" Pod eating Chinook Salmon near Sooke, B.C. Canada
. Thank you again Deanna Brett for some amazing photos! - Sooke Coastal Explorations
Watching a super pod of 30 Bigg's Killer Whales
in the gulf thinking that J and K Pod
should be around too. Pick up the binos and started scanning BAM there they are 5 miles to the west of us
. Over 70 Killer Whales less than 5 miles apart... Stellar evening!! - Simon Pidcock
we were camping at the Spencer Spit (east side of Lopez Island)
walk-in campground yesterday morning, and we saw four Orcas
traveling SSE out in the Anacortes ferry channel
beyond Frost Island. The group included 3 adults and one younger animal. All three adults had dorsal fins of a similar height, but we didn't we didn't get a good look to see if any of them was a mature male before they went behind Frost Island. - Mark Wilson
9:00 AM -
We saw two groups of whales
pass the south beach of Decatur Head in between James Island
(where the San Juan Islands meet Georgia Strait). There were about 8 - 10 total
. They headed north toward Thatcher Pass, and appeared to ge following a group of salmon. - Deb Wilson
At least one humpback off of Point Colville near Davidson Rock
(SE tip of Lopez Island). Heading North at 1pm
Wednesday. - Elise Murphy
I think I saw two humpbacks off West Point at Discovery Park
(north of Seattle) around 12:30pm
. - Isobel Alexander
9:10 AM -
Observed a Humpback Whale
surfacing every 2-4 minutes, heading north due west of West Point, Discovery Park
, while I was bird-watching. I took several photos with my 400mm lens, including one of the underside of the tail. - Joe Sweeney.
7:11 pm - HB
headed east off Jefferson Head toward Golden Gardens
. - Stephanie Raymond, Victoria Clipper
Another amazing day on the water!!! Morning trip we were in Boundary Pass/Swanson Channel
in flat calm waters with members of K Pod, a few L Pod whales, and J Pod!!
Lots of socializing, and a few very nice spyhops by J34 Doublestuff!
Then the afternoon trip we went south to False Bay/Eagle Cove
area with the rest of L Pod
. Lots of whales spread everywhere, and a few were even surfing wakes of big boats!! Nice close-up pass by L95 Nigel
. Steller Sea Lions on Whale Rocks growling away. Very nice day and great passengers! - John Boyd
It was awesome to watch a large group of whales heading south past Lime Kiln this afternoon
. They were a ways offshore but all in pretty close together. About half a dozen of them surfed a freighter wake - see two of them sharking while doing so in the photo here! Also, I coined a new term for all the mixing and matching of pods we've been seeing this summer: "hodge-pod". - Monika Wieland.
12:35 - Orca calls on the Orca Sound hydrophone
right now and for the past 30 minutes or so. - Jen Chesnut
2:30 PM - ~10 Orcas
heading south from Lime Kiln
traveling with long moments of submersion (likely feeding). - Timothy Knab
Jessica Wiltrout reports her husband was halibut fishing in 190' depth about 2 miles out from Goat Rock at Harris Beach State Park
, two miles north of Brookings OR
, when a single orca came by heading north in rough seas.
9:45 am - Solitary humpack in central Puget Sound
, in the basin about a mile south of Richmond Beach in Shoreline
. Spotted from inland with binoculars over a mile away so hard to clearly ID. Pronounced dorsal fin and tall blow suggest humpback. Heard what may have been a slap while it was on the surface. Seen surfacing 2-3 times in the same area then started heading north. - Dave Flotree
It's been lovely having L and K Pod back in the Salish Sea
these past few days- and the vocalizations have been awesome! They've been doing lots of foraging along the west side of San Juan Island. Yesterday, there must have been over one hundred people at Lime Kiln Light to watch from land as 20+ L Pod
whales swam by. Check out these pics from two of my favorite boys who were foraging together yesterday. - Heather MacIntyre
I was at Lime Kiln State Park around 6:30pm
when my son and I spotted several orcas
and whale watching boats just off the shore at the overlook area. They were about 100 yards from shore and the whales were headed south around the island. - Wayne Wilhelm Greenfield
6:30pm - Hearing faint calls again on LK
....They been turning around all day once they reach Land Bank. Saw some pretty great behaviors this morn from the pullout but they haven't been needing to come north, been spread out all down island
. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
Such an amazing day on the water. First trip we had a minke whale
, porpoises, eagles, sea lions, and then we ended up near False Bay
with lots of whales everywhere including J22, J34, K26
and more. And out of nowhere comes a Pacific White-Sided Dolphin
that bow rode us for a bit! So I thought it would be hard to top that trip--so for the afternoon trip we had eagles, seals, sea lions, an very cooperative minke whale. Ivan and I decided to go out to see some Transient Orcas, and wouldn't you know it--we found about 12 more Resident Orcas
including L84 Nyssa
that no one knew were out there. Then over to see the Transients (T36s, 37s
) and right as we got there everyone else left!!! So just us and whales, who began to breach and cartwheel and play and gave us a very nice and pretty close pass. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watching
Just south of False Bay, Ripple (K44)
with his family and others. I know I say it all the time but what a beautiful day with beautiful whales. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu.
hanging out with Ken Balcomb and the team from the Center for Whale Research. SW side of San Juan Island, Whale Rocks, South End of Lopez Island
. We had J's, K's and L's
. - Connie Bickerton.
7:40 - Faint Resident orca vocals
were heard on Lime Kiln hydrophone
by Alisa Lemire Brooks. Visual by Ed, at least some of them coming in from the west towards island and to the south of Land Bank. They were milling spread out and trending south bound.
In the afternoon
the residents that had been off San Juan Island
began making their way steadily south, and by our 3:30 trip we had the rare opportunity to view resident and transient killer whales within a mile or two of each other!
In a strange turn of events, the transients were playful and active, while the residents remained quite sedate, focusing on traveling. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watching
T65A and 6 month old T65A5. Southwest of Anacortes
on Sunday. - Photo by James Gresham.
8:30am ... Two whales observed mid channel south of Kingston
and east of Pt Monroe at approx 47 43.8N 122 29.7W. The northbound Victoria Clipper stopped briefly to a show of blows and diving tails. The whales seemed to be leisurely feeding in the same vicinity for over an hour ... Repeatedly surfacing for a series of breaths followed by dives. The calm, sunny morning provided the chance to hear the blows from across the water. - Dan Hannafious with Isaiah and Doug
We saw the humpback
again on the Clipper 3! He was circling mid channel near Point Jefferson (Kingston) at 8:10
. - Justine Buckmaster, Victoria Clipper
12:10 pm - White sided dolphin off Edmonds!
3:30 pm - A humpback
maybe 50-75 feet off shore from Hannah Heights
. Only private boats nearby... all behaving very nicely, as far as I could tell. A couple kayaks too. Doing the usual 3-4 shallow, breathing surfaces... then 4th or 5th time down, it would go deep, flukes straight up. Within sight, I counted 6 fluke dives total. No breaches. My first San Juan Humpback sighting... Absolutely amazing!! I was a silly-giddy child again... "It's a HUMPBACK! It's a HUMPBACK!" - Cher - Friday Harbor
Ken Balcomb reports J pod members off Monarch Head
at the south end of Georgia Strait and the north end of Boundary Pass, heading south about 6 pm
Great afternoon in the Strait of Georgia with a very playful J pod!
It was one of the strangest fog days I've ever seen! Layers of fog were covering certain pockets of the water and the whales would wander in and out of it. The funny thing was that the fog was not very high off the water. L87 Onyx and J26 Mike
's dorsal fins would just be peeking out of the top of the fog layer while much of everything else stayed hidden. At one point we saw a cartwheel...sort of. We could only see the tail fly above the marine layer. Very amusing, indeed... - Katie Jones
11:00 AM -
a handful of orcas, 2-4
, seen off of Point Wilson in Port Townsend
by a couple of our visitors at PTMSC. They were heading north into the strait. - Allison Kellum
We spotted this young orca off Lopez Island
, in a group of five - only one mature male present in that group - see the rakings on it's back? - Amitava Michael Kundu.
T065A's off Whidbey, Smith and Minor Islands
. This is a great group. The "Resident Transients." Incredibly skilled hunters. I hadn't seen them for a couple months. Little 6 month old T065A5 is looking great! On the hunt. One of the T065A's tail slaps a harbor porpoise into the air after a chunk of the porpoise's peduncle was bitten out, disabling it. After this, a whale does a half breach with the porpoise across it's back. Watching Transients hunt can be brutal but once you've seen enough hunts to understand the tactics they use and can disassociate yourself, they become a thing of beauty. - James Gresham
Just south of Race Rocks
were some transient killer whales!
They made it all the way to Sequim! They made a kill at around 1pm
. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
7:30 pm -
watched them from Bush Point
heading north at a fast pace. - Sandy Pollard
7:28 - Ebey's landing
. Multiple blows. Heading north. - Allen Peter
Seeing them at Bush Pt
7 pm - Orcas headed towards Bush Point
& south Marrowstone Island, going northwest. - Wendy Sines
But some are headed N now off Foulweather Bluff
6 pm -
We Got Whales!! Just south of Bush Pt, on the Kitsap Peninsula side, in Skunk Bay
between Hansville and Foulweather Bluff, traveling NW at a pretty steady pace. Looks like at least a dozen, but we haven't had a good long look yet. Yay! Thanks to all who have posted all day - we don't have a recent update on the NW Whidbey Transient group, so let us know if you see them too! - Susan Berta
I just spotted at least 2 or 3 Orcas
headed north almost mid-chanel, but a bit closer to Hansville
. - Judy Anderson Roupe
About six orcas past Point No Point at 5:10pm
headed north and moving very fast. - Patty Michak, Hansville
I was out fishing near Point no Point
with the family tonight
and we pulled up our lines to enjoy 9 beautiful orcas!
- Scott Orness
I'm at Maxwelton beach park
looking west and orcas are midchannel
. Multiple blows. Headed north. - Rachel Haight
Maia at WS Ferries reports a pod of orca in the Clinton/Mukilteo ferry lane
, presumably heading south.
At 1 PM
on Sunday, Orcas with several tour boats on the scene located just south of Partridge Bank
About due West of Darst Road in Coupeville (about 1-2 miles offshore, binocs or a spotting scope needed). - Cameron Chandler
11:40am - Transient Killer Whales
spotted north of Langley
! Expected here around 12:15pm (edit: sounds like they already went south past us. Sneaky Ts!) Thanks to Fred Lundahl for the heads up! - Sara Hysong-Shimazu
Bells Beach, Langley, 11am -
We saw four orca
moving quickly toward Langley this morning. They were not playing, breeching, etc., just cruising. There was a boat "Destiny" that sighted them and followed quite a ways away, but a smaller boat ahead of Destiny, was much more aggressive in their chase and got closer than what looked legal...granted it hard to ascertain from the shore. What a treat for us, however! - Margaret (Peggy) Sullivan
11 am -
Barbara McCallem from Bells Beach
just called reporting a pod of about 15 orcas
headed to langley right NOW! - Sharen Heath
About 10:00 to 10:15 AM - Orca in Saratoga Passage
. At least four Orca were a few hundred feet off the eastern shore of Whidbey Island, just south of Fox Spit
(5 miles north of Langley). The Orca resumed heading south and toward the center of the Passage. 3+ Orca initially feeding, then traveling. - Steve Runo
9:33am - Transients are at PT Wilson
just made a kill. - Christopher Hanke
Chrissy McLean at Port Townsend Marine Science Center reports 5-6 orcas were headed north out of Admiralty within 200 yards of Pt. Wilson
and seemed to be feeding. Fishermen pulled in their lines.
A Minke whale at Hein bank
. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
What a CRAZY day! Captain Spencer and I were watching L87, Onyx
(a Resident Orca) forage and noticed something small trailing him. We knew it was too small to be an orca, and sure enough it was a Pacific White-Sided Dolphin
(also known by locals as a Lag). The Lag proceeded to pester him for about an hour! He tried everything, ignoring it, tail slapping, and eventually started porpoising out of the water- he was so over it! Unfortunately for him, the Lag was just having way to much fun! However, we were able to steal him away for a little quality bow riding time. - Heather MacIntyre
I heard what I presume was J-Pod Group A on the Lime Kiln hydrophones from 3:00-3:30
today. - Monika Wieland
One of the T37s
checking to see if there are any seals on the beach at Minor Island
yesterday. They are in luck... - Katie Jones.
It was a bad day to be a sea bird! Had one of the coolest encounters with Transient Orcas today! 37s and 34s
, plus another group that I am not sure of yet. Three or four juveniles kept attacking birds as if they were Sea Lions. - Ivan Reiff, Western Prince Whale Watch.
7 pm - T37's and T34's
were 1 mile south of SA buoy (about two miles NW of Pt. Wilson, Port Townsend
) heading into Admiralty Inlet one hour ago. - Michael P Colahan
At least four (including a little one, perhaps the new Transient baby) have just a bit ago passed Bush Point
still heading southbound. They have not yet reached Windmill Point which is just north of Mutiny Bay, Admiralty Inlet. - Susan Wicklund and Marilyn Armbruster
7 pm -
I'm headed back to Seattle from Victoria and we just saw a few orcas
. Brought some tears to my eyes...first time I've ever seen them in the wild Soooo amazing! This was one of my main reasons for moving up here. Still on the clipper. We saw them just north of Port Townsend
. Couldn't tell which direction they were headed. It looked like they were playing or hunting. - Josh Harrison
2 pm ish - Orcas reported about an hour ago off Pt. Wilson
(near Port Townsend), heading south.
12:58 PM - 5 transient orcas
spotted traveling near Strait of Juan de Fuca (2 miles NW of Ebey's Landing
, Whidbey Island). - Raymond Malstead
FYI for anyone not familiar....Tank Farm = Point Wells, Woodway (which is just north of Richmond Beach, Shoreline) transected from Connie's location means the whale is mid Port Madison
a bit more east.
10:28 - HB
moved a bit north. Sightline from Richmond Beach out from Suquamish House. Circling. Deep dive. Even from afar is breathtaking, such a beautiful whale
thanks to Connie...i just saw it
surface 6 times in a circle then fluke. South end Port Madison...outer edge of ( so very much Kitsap side). - Alisa Lemire Brooks
just resighted him/her
further north of point wells heading north I think, still mid channel.
still north of tank farm
but heading south.
Now north of the tank farm
, closer to mid channel, heading north east.
Trending south line of sight from the north end of Fay Bainbridge
with the south end of the tank farm.
- deep dive, about the same place, not traveling very far.
Spending the first day of my retirement watching a humpback
whale from Fay Bainbridge
. It seemed to be heading north at noon.
it seems to be coming up every 10 min or so. Trending southeast at the moment, but circling round and feeding.
HB is still just north of Fay Bainbridge
. Seems to be circling around feeding. Came up and took 6 breaths, followed by a deep dive with a lovely view of his/her flukes. Heading north now.
Just spotted the HB north of Fay Bainbridge
headed south. Did a very deep dive, and I haven't refound it yet. Closer to west side. That's about the same place it was yesterday morning. - Connie Bickerton
has survived that first critical year so its safe to designate it with the name Tree after Tree Island where it was likely born. Next step is to get an image of the calf breaching and showing it's belly so we can see if if it's a he/she. Her mom T041A
is easily distinguished by her 2 notches but not to be confused with the similar fin to Wakana (T011). The mom and calf were alone when John was with them and we don't know if she returned to her matrilineal gang and if she didn't then she will likely be with another gang as she would be challenged to provide food if she just travelled on her own. If they are spotted, It would be great to get images to us right away. - Rod Palm, Strawberry Isle Marine Research Station, Tofino BC. - Howard Tom.
I thought maybe someone with knowledge would report the large strung-out group of orcas off Ediz Hook Port Angeles
on Friday, August 15 at about 2pm
. We were returning from a fruitless fishing trip out of PA when we encountered the group of maybe 20 orcas. The water was too rough to attempt a photo. Based on this information, and the reported locations of other orcas that day, would you think these are residents of transients? - Sherry Anderson, Sequim
Note: The only other report near there that day was of "Group A" of J pod in Haro Strait, which could look like about 20 orcas.
Resident killer whales in Haro Strait! L87, J39, J49
, and several other members of J-pod who have been seen in the area recently. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
7:19 am - Three or more orcas
were just now very close in and near to the Vashon ferry terminal
and are heading west. - Barbara Weber
We saw Split Fin! He was taking a snooze, so after a few surfaces we decided to keep moving and keep looking... And we found 5 more humpbacks!
But the highlight was a mother and calf pair. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Spotted a humpback whale about 740am
this morning about 3-400 yards off of NE tip of Bainbridge Island
. It has been cruising back and forth for the past hour just offshore. Very foggy but did get some decent pics. - Tim Cuddy
Ken Balcomb at the Center for Whale Research reports that "Group A" of J pod
went north along the west side of San Juan Island
today, and the Adam U reports hearing K pod calls from Tatoosh
, west of Neah Bay, while on a NOAA Fisheries research cruise.
In the fog in the AM
, near Barnes and Clark Islands
. Naturalist Jeanne Hyde counted them...So far I have counted 27 Ts, comprised of 7 different family groups. T34s, T36s, T37s, T99s, T101s (including T102), T124, and at least one of her kids, T65As
- Capt. Jim Maya
From the rocks at Lime Kiln Point
State Park. - Monika Wieland.
7:00 pm. -
Whales on Lime Kiln hydro
. Mostly echolocation clicks. - James Gresham
7:36 pm -
Faint intermittent Orca calls were being heard on Lime Kiln Hydrophone
(and some echolocation clicks). Looks like J Pod
made it to the west side of San Juan Island. I wonder where they'll head next! L Pod returned to the Salish Sea AND brought the L12's with them!! This is only the SECOND time I've seen the L12's this summer (which should concern you). All of the pods have been socializing together, and splitting up usual matriarcal groups. Some days it just seems like mom's are a little less protective, and anything goes. It's like an Orca soap-opera!! - Heather MacIntyre
J2 Granny with L87 Onyx
yesterday. It was funny to see them ROCKET by L41 Mega's group, who were lollygagging in the kelp, and cruise north, as Granny is wont to do. - Monika Wieland.
Not only did we find humpbacks, and not only did we find killer whales, we found them side-by-side!
And not only were they side-by-side, they were interacting! - Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Lindsay spied a humpback
nearby. Captain Jeff got us in a great position for viewing while Tom and I started our humpback spiels. Rush found another humpback
, and this one was surrounded by killer whales
! We were initially frightened that they were transients (no one was prepared to see our well known humpback friend Split Fin
, meet his demise at only 8 years old), but thankfully they turned out to be residents
. They did harass Split Fin for a while and he let out several disturbed "trumpets" before proceeding to cartwheel and tail-slap continuously for 20 minutes. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whale Whale Watch
Meanwhile in Howe Sound
(North of Vancouver) .... One for the memory bank. 18+ Bigg's killer whales!!
Including the T124's new calf
, who I am unofficially saying is T124Ds calf (a first for her!). In attendance at various points in the day: T34s, 36, 36Bs, 37, 37Bs, 90s, 99 + 99C, 101s + 102, 124s (minus 124C).
- Tasli Shaw
Ron Moody reports seeing 7-8 orcas
northwest of Vancouver near Bowen Island (Howe Sound)
at about 11 am
and again at about 6 pm
New Biggs calf!! Looks like the mom is T124D
. We had a beautiful encounter with them and the T36B's, T101's, T90's, T34's and T37's in Howe Sound!
- Gary Sutton.
An amazing morning watching transient Killer Whales attack a large Humpback Whale
right off Sooke...after the humpback tail lob, fin strike and trying to breach right on top of the Orca...they finally left him alone...
Also K14's resident killer whales were visiting the Sooke area
....WOW! - Sooke Coastal Explorations
this evening - at least 4 orcas
headed east to west in the distance, maybe a mile offshore of Flint Beach on Lopez Island
. - Tom Reeve
Orcas sighted off Rosario Beach beginning at about 2:00 pm
. Looks to be about three of them, including one large male. - Chanel Giles
There were three humpback whales
heading very slowly north in Haro Strait off Land Bank
as well. - Monika Wieland
L85 with students on a field trip at Lime Kil
n. - Whitney Neugebauer.
Some days you have an encounter with whales that is stunning not for the breaches, spyhops and other exciting surface behaviors, but because you realize that you are the only boat watching 40 whales in Rosario Channel
...was so beautiful to watch the whales on the "orca treadmill", where they were swimming about 5 mph into a 5 mph current for over an hour... Thank you Ivan Reiff for yet another fantastic Monday on the Western Explorer. - John Boyd
Had an amazing day on the water yesterday, with maybe 40 Orca
around breathing and very active, we were around San Juan island area
. - Stephen Ellwood.
kelping. Taken from shore at Lime Kiln
. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu.
Awesome encounter just outside Mitchell Bay. - L41 Mega possibly showing off for the J pod females he was traveling with. - Kevin Culmback.
I thought the Orcas
were going to come into Snug Harbor Resort
and Marina and have a latte! Orca viewing from the dock! - Capt. Jim Maya.
Early in the morning J-Pod (and a couple K-Pod whales
, I think) came down Haro Strait and met up with the L12s
who had been hanging off the south end of San Juan Island the day before. I saw this mixed group with members of all three pods head north on the west side between 1 and 2 PM
, with L41 Mega's group
tight in shore with the J22s
. I wondered where all the other residents had gotten to, as I believe everyone but the L54 sub-group has been "in" inland waters the last couple of days. Tonight I heard from John Boyd they had about 40 residents in Rosario Strait this afternoon, so that explains it! - Monika Wieland
I used to see more of the L12 sub-group
than anybody else, but not this year! Today was only the second time I've seen them this season, but it was fantastic! I've got lots of photos to share, but had to start with this (uncropped) shot of the big guy: L41 Mega. Photo taken from shore on the west side of San Juan Island. - Monika Wieland.
A huge cartwheel from L94 Calypso yesterday of Land Bank's Westside Preserve on San Juan Island
. - Monika Wieland.
Can't see them but can hear them. Orcas
going past East to West, Flint Beach, Lopez Island
. Gentle sounds of waves on the beach with blows from orcas, quite nice! - Sally Reeve
10:00am - orcas on lime kiln's hydrophone
. sounds like L pod. - Amanda Stabler Fitzgerald
9:35 am -
Not two but three humpbacks
this morning off Hannah Heights
. A mom and calf and and then a third one. Just another day in paradise. - Sandy Buckley
K35 Sonata. K22 Sekiu. K21 Cappuccino
. Orca shots taken from land (vicinity of E Point, Saturna
). - James McLarnon.
It was an eventful day today with our resident whales along the west side of San Juan Island
. We were greeted by both members of K Pod and L Pod
for our afternoon trip on the M/V Sea Lion. We first met up with these whales at Battleship Island and then followed them north towards Turn Point Lighthouse on Stuart Island
. I always love being able to see them at Turn Point because Mt. Baker, the lighthouse, and the whales, will occasionally line up perfectly for the ultimate whale watching shot. - Naturalist Caitlin, San Juan Safaris and Outfitters
J2 "Granny" with J6 "Mike" (L87 "Onyx" and J42 "Echo"
in the rear) and the majestic view of Burnaby, Surrey and Tswassen
in the background. - Tasli Shaw.
Here are a few of the 26 whales .. J2 "Granny", J40 "Suttles", J19 "Shachi", J27 "Blackberry", J38 "Cookie."
- Tasli Shaw.
Between 2-3 pm - L pod sightings. Mega, Mystery, Calypso with Cousteau, Maisha with Joy and Ocean Sun
(according to Island Adventure crew) on the South-Western part of San Juan Island
. Appeared to be feeding. I wished Lolita was with them. Hope that time is coming. - Zita Fekete
A mind-blowing closeup: Tika K33 of the Southern Resident Killer Whales
surfaced so close to me at Lime Kiln State Park
that I could scarcely fit him into my lens! This photo is uncropped. Tika (born 2001) is a teenager now, and his sprouting dorsal fin is taller than it appears here -- he was flexing his fin as he surfaced. - Meg McDonald, Wild Northwest Beauty Photography.
Today near Point Roberts with J pod
.....predation events all over the place!!! First watching them taking down a chinook salmon and THEN J36 and J41 spent over 45 minutes harassing a harbour porpoise. J42
joined in about halfway through the encounter also. So unbelievable to watch these residents throw around, carry around and slap the helpless porpoise. - Gary Sutton, Wild Whales Vancouver
1:31pm - Whales on LK hydrophones
now!!!!!! Get out your listening ears, listen to Orca Sound! - Sherry Joyner
I was with two group's of Bigg's Killer Whales
today. I'm not sure who this is, but look at the fresh wounds just ahead of the pec fin. I guess that happens occasionally when your food has pretty good sized teeth like a harbor seal! (T65a's and the T36b's
). - Traci Walter.
Tonight Kim Neall Bruder and I (and Zoe) Jumped in the boat and headed out to Patos Island
to photograph the Super moon against the light house and hopefully Mt. Baker depending on where it came up. We were hoping to catch all 3 together. As we arrived we noticed a boat to our left watching someone paddling a small boat along the rocks. I grabbed the binoculars and realized there was a pod of about 6 Transient whales
swimming all around him. We headed over to watch. Not realizing this guy was in a small inflatable rowboat and surrounded by feeding Transients. Not my first choice of boats in that situation! As usual they did not have any concern with him but you can see from the pictures that he had to be a little nervous. Talk about a sitting duck! The Transients moved on from him and proceeded to circle the whole island searching every cove along the way for seals. We followed them around the whole island and ended right back where we started at the lighthouse just in time for the Moon. What an unexpected surprise. Anyway this is what we ended up with. it was a little tricky getting a good shot of the light house with the ripping currents. It sure was fun trying. Outside of the currents it was like a lake out there. Oh, what a night! - Karl Bruder
Around 7:45 PM
I saw the T65As
heading south from Lime Kiln
, a couple miles offshore. - Monika Wieland
We caught up with the Resident orca near Vancouver BC
. They were headed back to the west towards the Canadian islands and we basically sat and let them stream by us. We saw members of all 3 pods, mostly J's and K's
and they were going off. Breaches, cartwheels, spy hops, pec slaps, tail slaps and throws all around us. Several J pod whales made very close approaches. J27 Blackberry was at ultra close range today. Being that close to a wild, adult male orca is a breathtaking thing. He popped up right next to us then turned and passed no more than 3 feet from the stern under water. - James Gresham.
Yesterday's encounter with the T065A's
- what an awesome family, they are indeed my favorite group of transients! They were hunting virtually all day, and although I know they need to hunt about 90% of their daylight hours, this still amazes me! The T065A's appeared to pick something up and pursue it through the open water. They chased what I think to be a pinniped of some sort of Sidney Island, where they made a successful kill. - Heather MacIntyre
Transient killer whales T018s sighted today off Friday Harbor San Juan Island
Washington. - Natasha MacDonald.
swimming past some very nervous Harbor Seals. Scott from Deception Pass Tours picked up the T18s at Salmon Bank
this morning. They spent most of the day cruising the shorelines of San Juan Channel
harassing seals, and last we heard were up by Stuart Island
this evening. - Ivan Reiff, Western Prince Whale Watch
A resident orca waves a pec fin at his admirers at Lime Kiln Point State Park
. - Bob Bussman.
A two part whale parade -- the first group in a resting line, travelling quickly. The second group went through Active Pass
more slowly. A treat! - Karoline Cullen.
Orcas that we saw off of Lime Kiln and San Juan county park
. We were staying far away and the pictures aren't the greatest. - Jennifer Farley.
Not sure who it is but it sounds like orcas and echolocation clicks
going on off the Lime Kiln Point hydrophone
. - Devin Scott Doss
My wife and and I spotted a pod of we think 4-6
from our boat, just off of San Juan Island at Bellevue Point
. They were heading south. 4 were forward of us about ¼ mile between us and the shore. I would estimate these 4 were about ½ mile off shore. We were stopped and taking in the sights when no sooner did we hear the unmistakable sound of blowholes astern of us and sure enough, two more orca were only 100 yards away By the time we were out of the shock of this sight, we did get an iphone picture of one of the orca, however, it is grainy at best. Just incredible! - Tom Bartolomei
751AM - Whales on Lime Kiln hydrophone
. - Jack Collins
7:51 am - J pod on Lime Kiln hydro
. - James Gresham
7:48 - J pod calls and echolocation on Lime Kiln!
- Alisa Lemire Brooks
Humpback whales near Discovery Bay
. We saw a blow and a single hump near the mouth of Discovery Bay. The pattern of the blows suggested perhaps a couple of whales traveling NNE. We think, based on the hump and blow, that they were humpbacks but we saw them from too great a distance to be sure. - Rick Floyd
7:45pm - Several J pod members at Lime Kiln
today, including Blackberry, put on a long show with breaches, tail slaps, spy hop, and more. Breathtaking! - Kristina Louise Dahl
We started out with a long trip up to East Point on Saturna Island
to catch up with the residents. J's and K's
returned this morning and boogied up Haro Strait.
They kept going and will probably spend the night in Vancouver. The "left overs," including K21 Cappuccino, stuck around southern San Juan instead of going north with the others. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
Around 7pm - 4-5 orcas passed the mouth of Rolf Bay on Matia Island
, they frolicked all the way to Sucia before loosing sight of them. They were playing but traveling very fast. - Thomas Stanton
5:39am - Orcas
moving slowly northward passing San Juan County Park
; 15 or more
closely together and a few more trailing behind. - Isabelle Martin
T34's, 37's and maybe the 99's today, Pea Pods in Rosario.
- Capt. Hobbes Buchanan.
2:00 PM - 5:30 PM -
Orcas south of Pt Lawrence, Orcas Is
. 48 38 N, 122 45 W. 4 hours in Rosario St. We saw 7-12 (perhaps more) orcas
today, apparently fishing cooperatively, from ~1:00 PM to 5 PM. Seen from south shore Orcas Is, east of Doe Bay
. Whales first seen moving east towards Obstruction Pt from Pt Lawrence, in the channel north of the Peapod islands, sometimes coming in quite close to shore in Buoy Bay. Turned south along the east side of Obstruction Pt., headed south into the Rosario Strait, then turned back north towards South Peapod Is, fishing in the tidal lee of that island (east). Later moved east, in the channel south of the Peapods, but staying close to those rocks/islands, toward Lummi. Lost sight of them moving north around Pt. Lawrence. Many whale watching boats following along. Appeared to be fishing cooperatively, herding fish against rocky steep shorelines before feeding at the surface, or herding fish in the tidal lee of south Peadpod Is. Lots of apparently purposeful tail slapping (once, ~ 6 consecutive slaps by one animal "standing" on its head), some breaching. Incoming tide was flowing strongly. - Frank Peale
Note: These were identified as mammal-eating Transients/Bigg's whales, so they were probably hunting seals.
It's hard being a harbor porpoise! Scenes from today at the north end of Haro Strait. T65As and T36As
. - Capt. Jim Maya.
7 transient killer whales (the T36A's and the T65A's
) attack a harbour porpoise in the most dramatic fashion. They threw it high in to the air, multiple times, all the while continuously breaching themselves! - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
10:30 AM - There were 7-8 whales
in our sighting. One whale was significantly larger than the others and had a smaller whale who travelled continually beside it. The largest whale seemed to be leading the direction of the pod. Just off Epsom Point (30+ miles NW of Vancouver BC) heading northwest. They were initially feeding off the reef and then appeared to be playfully travelling together. - Regan Minchin.
T30's and a BC Ferry with Saltspring Island, BC
in the background. - Traci Walter.
No residents around the last two days but we've been lucky enough to find transient killer whales yesterday and today AND they were two different groups. Yesterday was the T18's
whereas the group that showed up today was the T30's
. Skipper Mark Malleson spotted these guys before he was even on the water. Mark spotted killer whales in Oak Bay, while eating breakfast, from his house! The T30's travelled steadily north and by the later afternoon they were too far away for us. They probably continued up and will head towards Vancouver. - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
12:30 pm, off North Bluff, Greenbank, Saratoga Passage
: Boating south between whidbey and camano islands had quite a show. Turned off engine and sat and watched for 20 minutes. Two were clearly mama and baby! Traveling south but paused to play. - Reported by Julie Alford.
1:30pm - Three orca. At CAMA BEACH
(Camano Island). Headed south. - Shane Bishop
6:26am - 7 Orcas in Penn Cove!!
- Kelly Zupich
6:48 pm - Humpback heading S off Me - kwa - mooks in W Seattle
right now. Maybe heading SW towards Colvos... - Lauren Phillips
Every day it seems we get more humpbacks in to the area, mostly south of Victoria.
All told we probably saw between 7 and 9 different humpbacks
! - Jennifer Dickson, Prince of Whales Whale Watch
I saw several blows
between the Mukilteo ferry lane and Everett
while I was on the 5:05 crossing this morning. It seemed to be just one whale. - -Sharon Harper-Peck
I saw one male dorsal, then a female, about 8:50 mid channel, Saratoga Passage
, then they kind of disappeared! Off to find a good meal at the Penn Cove mussel rafts, no doubt! - Jill Hein
Four or more were headed across Saratoga Passage toward Penn Cove at 8:30
. - Howard Garrett
8 pm -
Susan and now all of us saw about 3 or more orcas from Greenbank
. On the Camano side heading north. - Howard Garrett
7 pm -
Stephanie Raymond called from the Victoria Clipper heading up Saratoga Passage and found about six Transient orcas off Lowell Point
, which is on Camano Island across Saratoga Passage from Greenbank. She said they are in two groups, one with 4 orcas on the Whidbey Island side, and another group with at least two on the Camano side, all trending northward.
I was sitting eating dinner and looking out over Saratoga Passage and noted the usual south bound Victoria Clipper just north of Langley. The boat stopped, reversed direction, and headed back north. I grabbed the binocs and went out on the neighbors bluff. I could see the blows from approx. 6 orcas (transients?)
blowing and rolling on the surface. They looked like they were feeding, roughly between Bell's Beach and Mabana
. The Clipper powered toward them, then slowed. They disappeared, to surface away from the boat. The boat zigzagged south to north several times, each time the orca disappeared for a short time, then again surfaced away from the boat and appeared to feed. They were moving very slowly to the north. The Clipper finally turned south to resume it's usual trip. - Barbara Brock
Danielle Doll called from the Mukilteo ferry after seeing 3 or 4 spouts about a half mile south of the ferry
. They were too far to see which way they were traveling. A humpback was seen there about the same time.
A report from Stacy Olson of TWO PODS OF ORCAS
(one group of 3 and one group of 4) between HAT/GEDNEY ISLAND and S. WHIDBEY ISLAND at 12:20 pm
, headed north!
From Harborview Park area in Everett
, saw several spouts in that same area about 7:40 pm
. Too far out to confirm it's a humpback
, but fun to see the sprays. - Anne Marie Hagel
Dick Snowberger saw the humpback
from the Clinton ferry
, north of the ferry landing.
Stephanie Raymond called again, this time with a report of a humpback
! between the Clinton ferry dock and Gedney Island
, moving slowly northward. That's two species in Saratoga Passage in 20 minutes.
There is 1 Humpback off Possession Pt
right now - Christopher Hanke
We popped over to a group of 3 humpbacks traveling down the Strait of Juan de Fuca
. - Prince of Whales Whale Watch
. It was a fantastic day on the water with part of Jpod and part of Kpod
! - Traci Walter
K26 Lobo In Canadian waters near coal dock and BC Ferry dock
. - Janine Harles.
We had 20+ Resident Orca surfing past Sooke
! - Sooke Coastal Explorations.
August 4, 2, 1, July 31 - Humpback whale
has been sighted 7/31, 8/1, 8/2 and 8/4 from Salmon Beach
homes, just north of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge
(Puget Sound). - Zeno Martin.
A barnacle-encrusted humpback breaches near Sooke, BC
. - Sooke Coastal Explorations.
10:41 am - Humpback now by Narrows bridge
..and a vessel getting way to close following it. Not cool!
9:11 am -
Watching 1 humpback just off Salmon Beach towards Gig Harbor
. - Asher Beckett
6:45 AM - One humpback
is starting its day just east of Gig Harbor
. - Aaron Campbell
5:20 AM -
WA State Ferries reports a Gray whale (but we are assuming it is this same humpback
reported and photographed by others) off Neil Pt, near Talequah, S. Vashon Island
, unknown direction of travel.
A short, sweet visit... Mystic Sea met up with part of J pod, including Onyx (L87) and Granny (J2), near Tsawwassen ferry terminal, B.C. around 2:00 pm
, heading north on yet another beautiful day. Let's hope the Fraser River's providing plenty of food. - Sandra Pollard (SSAMN).
, born in 1993, in the sediment-rich waters of Georgia Strait
near the Fraser River. - Gary Sutton.
Transient orca T037s off Patos Island
heading across Boundary Pass. - Jill Hein.
2-year old T037B1
is one scratched up little dude. Taken near Point Roberts
. - Connie Bickerton.
About 6-9 T's this Sunday near Point Roberts
, Georgia Strait. - Elyse Sollitto.
I saw today didn't look like it had a destination to be at. I guess this makes sense since there were reports of a humpback a few miles away, but three hours later. It sure was a beautiful day in the Sound, that's where I'd be hanging. - Noah Izzard
I also saw one humpback around 3:45pm
from the north side of the beach at Fay Bainbridge
heading east. About 20 minutes later, I saw a blow straight across near Seattle. - Elizabeth Nicole
2:50 pm - humpback whale
spotted by my husband off beach near Fay Bainbridge
, heading north. Was only 100 yards off shore, but moving out towards open water... Keep an eye out north kitsap. - Sue Surowiec Larkin
About 2:45 PM -
Joining in on the sighting of a humpback off Bainbridge Island
. Our guests were thrilled to see the whale as we walked along Fay Bainbridge Beach. The whale was south of us - about off Rolling Bay
and heading from fairly close to Bainbridge Island out toward the middle of the Sound. - Kitsap Tours
Humpback whale seen from the 7:10 Bainbridge ferry to Seattle
. Whale was headed west around Restoration Pt. - Mary Bond
There were no residents around for most of the day, but they headed back in from the Strait of Juan de Fuca just before sunset
. - Monika Wieland, San Juan Island
Just had an incredibly beautiful visit with J pod. West of Victoria
, westbound when we left. - James Gresham
What an incredible day on the water!! The T037s
were simply amazing, then caught up with Ressies east bound from Victoria
later!! We saw the J14s, J16s, J19s, L87, and the K14s
- the same group that's been traveling together for the past three days now since they joined up off the Pender Bluffs Thursday evening. - Heather MacIntyre
is back in town! They put on a great show during the afternoon
around Race Rocks as they headed west
. The crew also spotted 2 humpbacks
in the area, a mother and calf, relaxing east of Constance Bank, as well as T37 and other transients off East Point
. Later in the afternoon we had some great evening sightings of K-Pod despite the chop. - Prince of Whales Whale Watch
What an afternoon with the T037
family!! These whales have been in the area for the past couple days and are obviously finding what resources they need in the waters in and around San Juan, in particular, Boundary Pass
. We saw some of the BEST displays of social behavior ... breaching, spyhopping, tail slapping, cartwheeling, even racing through the water upside down! Today was one of those high pitched squeaky "Eeekkk" (!!!!!) days, for those of you who know me well. - Heather MacIntyre
Loads of tail-slaps and breaches from the T037s
today, they were very active out by Patos Island
. The most active T's I've ever seen. - Jill Hein.
happened today near the Tacoma Narrows
bridge. - The Ikkatsu Project.
raises his or her distinctive flukes, near Fidalgo Island
(northwest of Whidbey Island). - James Gresham.
7:15 PM -
spotting of a whale or Dolphin. I assumed this was a whale. We were putting out crab pots and saw a splash and whale diving. A few minutes I saw it's fluke and at both end points of the fluke were white. Saw it 2 times. 10764 NE Broomgerrie, Bainbridge
- right in front of our house. Just swimming along. Only saw one. There were other crabbing boats out closer to it. - Maria Mason
From ferry ... It"s now on the right of the SEA-Bain ferry lane
. Sailboats are near from my point of view. Looks to be north of Bainbridge ferry terminal. - Lila Pharis
] on the ferry to Anderson Island
. Have seen porpoises before, this was much bigger than a porpoise and it had a white tip on the fin. - Bob Hines
Yay! From Emma Schmitz park we see blows of two, line of site approaching Tillicum Village
, closer to Blake Isl side northbound! - Alisa Lemire Brooks
I was able to capture several photos of the lone Humpback
as he/she traveled up Colvos Passage
from Prospect Point, Olalla & Southworth Ferry Terminal. - Katie Schmelzer.
1:54pm - One whale
just passed through Colvos Passage
heading north, wow what a sight! - Donna DiGiacomo Green
3:26 - Humpback nearing Blakely Island
, closer to the Kitsap side. - Kitsap Orca Watch
Looks like he is pointed right at Alki
. - Jamie Grundhauser
3:10 pm -
Amy Carey called to report the humpback
is now off the north end of Vashon Island
, approaching the east shoreline of Blake Island and heading north closer to the Kitsap side of the water.
3 pm -
Erik Ferrel called to report watching one humpback
breaching while he was onboard the WA State Ferry Tillicum. The humpback was just west of the Vashon Head Light
11:55 AM - Two humpbacks
spotted just off of Alki point
, looked like they were headed northeast toward Elliot bay. Haven't seen them since then. - Miles Dudley
This morning around 11:00, 1/2-1 mile south of Salmon Beach
towards east side in center of Narrows. We saw two or three whales and their spouts. Probably the same bunch we saw there yesterday. - Michael Marlatt
10:47 - Humpbacks
just passed Chambers Bay
headed South!!!!! - Glenn Hansen
We spotted a humpback around 10:45 am between Fox Island and Chambers Golf Course
. - Jay-Lisa Matties Gray
Just had a report that the one or more Humpbacks
from yesterday is still in the triangle area between Vashon, Point Defiance and Gig Harbor/Colvos
. Yay! - Amy Carey
At Lime Kiln J2, the J14s, J16s, J19s, L87, and K14s passed heading south between 2:40 and 3:30 PM
. While the K14s had been on the west side the day before, J2's group had spent a couple days up north coming down Boundary Pass and going right back up Swanson Channel. - Monika Wieland, San Juan Island
What was it I was saying about these two whales being my most photographed of the season? If J37 Hy'Shqa and J49 T'ilem I'nges
want to keep popping up right in front of me, I'm happy to keep taking their picture! Off the rocks at Lime Kiln Lighthouse
. - Monika Wieland.
12:23 - Lots of orca in Boundary Pass
, 25 boats. - Jennifer Conkie
Reports of transients off Waldron Island
came in in the late afternoon so Ken and Dave and I went out. We found them well north just about to enter the Strait of Georgia between Patos Island and Saturna's East Point
. And what perfect timing this was: Instantly they put on a show of tail slapping and leaping repeatedly near the boat. I got a perfect double leap and lots of other leaps and flashy orca displays - in gorgeous light and high speed on the video in 4K! On top of this we put down a GoPro after a calf, T037B1
, showed up in the propeller current right under us taking a jacuzzi. And sure enough it came right up to the camera several times - the first underwater shots from here. For all of us it had been a very memorable trip. - Florian Graner
Small pod of [humpbacks
] seen in Narrows apx 9-930 pm 1/2 -1 mile south of Salmon Beach
towards east side n center of Narrows. Tails n blows! Narrows south of salmon beach. The tails looks a little big for orcas and I didn't see any dorsal fins. - Michael Marlatt
6:21pm - In the Narrows
now, mid Channel from Salmon Beach
. - Melissa Bird
8 p.m. - Humpback whale at Pt Defiance
. Observed a humpback whale feeding just south of Pt. Defiance (north of The Narrows bridge). 47'17"N 122'325W. Appeared to be feeding. - Photo by Ken Dzinbal.
Humpback whale off south end of Vashon Island
. - Kelly Burns Keenan.
I believe there are two
. They're in the Narrows now near Salmon Beach
They are about a 1/2 mile East of Gig Harbor
now. Heading South. - Aaron Campbell
Just left Point Defiance-5-mile drive
. Watched the humpback for the past hour from there- just west of the Vashon ferry terminal (closer to Vashon) -kept changing direction. - Katie Schmelzer
I'm thinking she did swim there fast & is still solo as I can only see one blow at a time - slowly heading westbound near Point Defiance
roughly 1/4 mile from shore.
just spotted her swimming westbound right in front of Vashon ferry dock
. - Simon North
Now near Manzinita beach and Maury island
East bound near Browns point
. - Amy Carey
Saw one breach and blow about seven minutes ago, heading north toward Ruston
. - Danielle Vance
Off of Day Island headed North
. - Photo by Glenn Hansen.
Wow 2 lucky kayaks just had the humpbacks
pass very near as the headed north up Colvos passage
. They are heading towards Sunrise beach. - Michele Riley Campbell
OMG! Right in the ferry lane
! No words... So blessed. A dream come true.
@ Dalco Passage View Pt/5 mile drive
. Looking straight (north) into Colvos Passage. Whale headed north, mouth of Colvos Passage on Gig Harbor side
. Just one whale
viewed. Now headed toward mid-channel.
11:28 - 1st Narrows view point.
Whale headed north now. Not sure if we should move back around towards Vashon or if the whale will turn around south again.
watching from 5 mile drive. Whale is still north of Narrows Bridge
, sort of heading south very slowly. Fishing boat just north of the one humpback. When it's quiet, you can hear it breathe from time to time. So, so happy! Taking 4-5 breaths and diving with a little fluke up on the dive. - Lila Pharis
10:44 - North of Narrows
midway between Narrows and Owen beach on Gig Harbor side.
10:34 -Just north of the Narrows Bridge
on the five mile loop at Point Defiance Park I only see one but others have been watching longer than me are saying 4 to 5. They are closer to the Gig Harbor side
looks like its feeding moving slowly towards the Narrows Bridge. Only one that I see.
I'm watching them now from the five mile loop in front of the Narrows Bridge at least four of them
. - Meghan Davis
5:42am - 2+ humpbacks
spotted heading south in Colvos passage between Vashon and Point Richmond
, nearing the #6 marker right now. - Christy Robinson
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