March 2014 Whale Sightings
Just another killer day in the Salish Sea! Today we had 15 Bigg's Killer Whales
munching on Pacific Harbour Seals for over two hours. - Simon Pidcock
On the morning
of March 31st we were able to catch up with a group of 15 transient (Bigg's) killer whales heading north quickly up Trincomali Channel
Thanks to Ian from Gulf Island Safaris and Simon from Ocean Ecoventures for the heads up. - Mark Malleson, Prince of Whales
We caught up with about 15 transient killer whales
on our 10am trip today! We had multiple breaches and tail slaps!!! - Maria Chantelle Tucker
I just got a phone call from a girlfriend in the Pacific City OR
(between Tillamook and Lincoln City) parking lot. She believes she's watching an attack on a gray whale by a small pod of transient killer whales
. The gray whale is moving very slowly, in between struggles, on the inside of haystack rock. It appears small, and there may be a large gray whale nearby as well. She sees an unknown number of killer whales. She positively confirmed only two gray whales, which are currently spy hopping nearshore. She couldn't identify any male killer whales. She isn't sure how many killer whales are present, but it looks tentatively between 3-6. She's still standing by with a scope and is going to try and get some pictures and is going to take notes on the encounter. - Michelle Fournet
Sneak peek!!! T65A with her newest calf!
Photo taken from Clover Pt, Victoria, BC - Marcie Callewaert
The T065A's passed through Oak Bay
south bound and headed west along the shoreline of Victoria. We watched them harass a river otter in McNeil Bay
and then predate on a probable seal in Ross Bay before continuing west past many onlookers at Clover Point. - Mark Malleson, with Ken Balcomb, Center for Whale Research
Saxe Point, Esquimalt. Now. Half dozen orcas
. At least one very small one. Spy hopping and cruising along. - Andrew Paine
Another group of transients were spotted off Race Rocks today at 4:15PM. T049As.
- Megan Flood
3:30 - Three groups of whales, about 10 altogether,
were seen off Yellow point close to Roxton island
. One female with a baby then two groups of 3 or 4 travelling south towards Ladysmith
. - Karen Green
9:00 AM - Orca family.
A family of one male, one female and one juvenile was seen this morning around 9:00am
swimming west through Active Pass
. - Andrea Mann
I managed to skip out for a few hours to do a midday sea watch at Bodega Bay
. Soon after settling in and scoping about 1:00 pm
, I saw spouts about a mile off NW of the head. Just as I was thinking they must be California Gray Whales at this time of year, I saw one whale breach completely out of the water. They were Orcas!
I counted around 20 animals with 2-3 males
with the tall large dorsal fins. The pod slowly made its way south in the direction of Pt. Reyes
. I and many tourists whom I shared my scope with to get them on their first whales, observed the pod for an hour before they got lost in the sun's glare as they headed south. Several breaches as well as tail slapping and spy hopping were seen. Several times I saw Orca swimming belly up!!! Black and white upon their bellys and tail, White around the eyes. Curiously, there were 2-3 California Gray Whales much closer to shore during the Orca passing
. - Scott Carey
12:50 pm -
Unknown caller reports a pod of 3 killer whales in front of Anchor Bay
(80 miles north of Pt. Reyes), jumping out of the water.
9:30 - I'm on Fox Spit Rd on Saratoga passage
and we are watching what we think (after googling information) is a mating ritual. The whales have been fairly stationary with their fins up out of the water
for about an hour now. Very interesting!! Location: Whidbey Shores, Saratoga Passage -Keegan Porter
Note: the description resembles feeding behavior. Mating is believed to take place in Baja California, Mexico.
We're seeing 3 Gray whales feeding in Port Susan near Tulalip
, headed south at 6:30 pm
onboard the Mystic Sea for our Langley Whale Center fundraising cruise! A little rain isn't dampening our day! - Susan Berta
Patch (gray whale #49)
and a companion just passed by Kayak Point. 3:30pm
. - Gary Lingenfelter
Watched 2 grays off south end of camano state park from 2:55-3:25
as they headed north up Saratoga passage. Spouts and dorsals, no breaches or tails. - Krista Paulino
I see some whale spouts in Saratoga passage on the Camano side
across from Fox Spit. looks like Mystic Sea is over there too. - Ann Brockenbrough
Saw a grey whale by the Clinton ferry dock @ 1:00 pm
. - Danielle Doll
I got a report of two transients 4 km off Trial Island
near Victoria BC at 2:00PM
. - Josh McInnes
12:40 pm -
Jamie Grundhauser reports Gray whale #53 off Hat Island
Max on the Mystic Sea reported a gray whale near Langley about 11:55
and another gray near Camano Head
a little later.
Very happy to see Dubknuck #44 today, also Patch #49 and #383, and 2 more whales
we couldn't ID because of the wind, waves AND rain! Near Langley (#44), Hat Island mid channel (#49) and Tulalip shores (#383). - Jill Hein
10:30 am -
Dick Snowberger reports seeing blows of gray whales from the Clinton ferry
The Salish Sea was sure alive today. The day started out with reports of 150 Pacific Whlte-Sided Dolphins in Haro Strait
. We left the dock and headed for the dolphins when I got a call from a crab boat with a report of 4-5 Orcas
. The crab boat captain is none other than our captain Lance Underwood who was working his other job. We decided to skip the dolphins and head for the orcas. By the time we got to the orca there were 10 animals with a very new calf
. After watching them for a few minutes I started scanning for other Orcas and sure enough I saw many more blows about two miles from us. We had two large groups totalling approximately 20 animals spread over two miles.
After spending time with the first group I turned around and couldn't believe it, there were 30 Pacific White-Sided Dolphins following the mammal eating Killer Whales.
They were very worked up and left the area very quickly after picking up the Orca. The new calf is T065A5
and the believed mother is T065A
who was born in 1986 and now has four offspring. We also got to see another new calf T049A4 who was first documented earlier this March. It so great to see the Bigg's Killer Whales and the Salish Sea thriving this spring! **Please note all of our images are cropped and taken with a telephoto lens** - Simon Pidcock
6:08 pm -
the Victoria Clipper encountered the T49A'
s this evening between Eastern Bank and Protection Island
(Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca). They were headed straight toward the mouth of Admiralty Inlet/Point Wilson. - Justine Buckmaster
Pacific White-sided Dolphins
bow-riding the Western Prince from above and under the water! Shot with two GoPro cameras, one mounted to the hull, another on an extension pole, this video was filmed in the San Juan Islands. - Chris Teren
Wow. Wow. WOW!!! Over 150 Pacific White-Sided Dolphins
not only swam with our boat, but followed us through John's Pass!!!
(between Stuart and John's islands, about 200m wide in spots). Flat, glassy water made taking pics and video super amazing! Pics and video shortly!!! - John Boyd
This morning at 10:40 a.m. while hiking in East Point park, I observed 2 transients
off the east end of Tumbo Island (just north of East Point, Saturna Island),
close to shore, heading west along the Georgia Strait side of Tumbo. I observed them for several minutes until they disappeared behind the land mass of Tumbo. - Robert Bruce
3.30pm - Orcas
(not identified) from Cortes Island Ferry. Approx 5 Orcas seen from Quadra to Cortes Ferry,
appeared to be feeding with a couple of breaches for a few minutes then headed north. Latitude - Longitude: 50.093274,-125.099945 Lat: 50° 5' 35.7864" Long: -125° 5' 59.802" - David Burrough
1 pm - Gray Whale feeding. Seaplane Base Crescent Harbor
. - Phil Matthews
Erin Lepage is watching one or two gray whales in Crescent Harbor
, Oak Harbor, Whidbey Island.
) C. Ivors spotted 3 dorsals that may have been killer whales about 3-4 miles W Saunders Reef
buoy five miles south of Pt. Arena, CA
. Last seen heading out NW. Same day (1854
) D. Harley reports possible 2 dorsal fins
hanging out north of Pt. Arena Lighthouse
off Manchester State Beach, CA. - aked Whale Research
watching them right now from Camano Island State Park
. They are close to Whidbey. - Sharon Szekely
7:15 pm -
Watched them from Hidden Beach (Greenbank) over towards Camano State Park
, still heading south. - Sandy Pollard
Connie Barrett saw 4 or 5 orcas headed south in Saratoga Passage, south of Cama Beach
, now headed toward the Camano Island State Park.
FOUND THEM! About 3 miles north of Cama Beach
, Camano Island side. Milling, spyhopping, no real direction but they may continue north. Will update when they move along .....yahoo! Jill Hein
Guessing about 5 Orcas continuing north through Saratoga Passage in Hidden Beach
area. Out of sight now. Closer to Camano Island. - Cindy Dean Prahl
4:35 PM -
Orca Pod Sighting!!! There's a pod of orcas heading north between Camano and Whidbey in Saratoga passage
, heading north toward penn cove! They're sticking pretty close together. - Wendy Nelson
Orca pod traveling through Saratoga Passage
. I spotted six or seven orcas traveling North through Saratoga Passage from Camano Island State Park around 4:30 pm
today. Two were leading, possibly a few hundred meters ahead. One of the two leaders was noticeably bigger than the rest. There appeared to be three juveniles (about half the size of the adults) in the group trailing behind. - Guthrie Schrengohst
3:21 pm - 5 orcas heading through Saratoga Passage
right now. We are on our Eyes over puget sound flight and just spotted them. - Christopher Krembs
10 am - 9 Transient orcas reported south of Pt. No Pt. and north of Eglon, heading south
. Reported by Mike Millard and Brian McLaughlin of WA Fish and Wildlife, who said they witnessed the take down of a seal. One of the Transient orcas was seen between Point No Point and Eglon just after 10 am. - Brian McLaughlin
Connie Barrett in Greenbank reports three gray whales headed north in Saratoga Passage
off Cama Beach.
Dan Zeik reports seeing 3 orcas, including a female and 2 juveniles
, while crabbing about 6-7 miles offshore of Westport WA
, at 46 46.6 x 124 12.5.
whale scout seeing two more gray whales north of Clinton
. No clear direction
at Howarth park in Everett
seeing at lease two grays southeast of hat island. - Whitney Neugebauer with Whale Scout
1:00 PM -
I was on Lantzville beach (just north of Nanaimo), watching a pod of 5 to 6 Ocras
in a tight group, traveling north. They were between the beach and Maude island about 800m from the shore. 1 male and 5 -6 smaller Orcas, too far away to guess at gender. There were sealions closer to shore who were being very quiet. - Duncan Etridge
12:30 PM - Orca sighting in Departure Bay - Nanaimo
: Four orcas were slowly swimming around Departure Bay in Nanaimo today for about a half hour - One male, two females and a small one
. This is the second time this year that whales have been swimming in Departure Bay - have live here most of my life and have never seen them come into the bay! - Lori Jones
Departure Bay, Nanaimo, BC - A pod of 5 Orca
spent at least the morning in Departure Bay, possibly fishing for herring. The first I saw them was 8:30 and at 11:30 am
when I last went by they were still working the shallows. I shared a video on your Facebook page yesterday. One male with larger fin tipped to the right. - Lisa Munro
They just headed out. Maybe around to Maylor point
(Penn Cove). It definitely looked like two whales
feeding, maybe mother and calf.
Two gray whales in Crescent Harbor (Oak Harbor)
right now, near the navy exchange. - Janna Harmon
update on two Grays mid channel
sightline between east end of Hat Island spit and Port of Everett pier
that is east of the Mukilteo ferry dock. Last near a larger pleasure boat and a couple of smaller.
from a bench near Mukilteo Community Center, Ed and I watching 2 Grays mid channel between Muk ferry terminal and Gedney/Hat Island
heading east towards Everett. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
#53 Little Patch
was very friendly today. Multiple close approaches to us and another boat.
Saratoga Passage Gray Whale #383 in Possession Sound between Everett and Hat Island
Saturday afternoon. - James Gresham
Spotted #723 & #56 south of Gedney Island (Hat Island)
just north of the ferry crossing. - Liz Fincher
11:30hrs - Transient Orcas T30, T30A and T30C
heading West from Brethour Island BC (due west of Stuart Island, across Haro Strait).
- David Howit
Whales in Active Pass. - Caroline Cullen
Orcas off Neah Bay
this morning! I got a call around 11am
reporting at least 6 killer whales
east of Neah Bay travelling west (towards Neah Bay). Unfortunately we were unable to get out to locate them. - Adrianne Akmajian, Marine Mammal Technician III, Makah Fisheries Management
Possible gray whale feeding pits at Hidden Beach
(Greenbank, Whidbey Island). They are pretty small but.... not sure what else they would be. California sea lions making racket and basking in the water. - Nancy Culp Zaretzke
Spouts spotted off Crescent Harbor
again. Sitting at the NEX cam see spout off in the distance. - Elizabeth Taylor
Shari Tarantino spotted some disturbance in the water on at 4:10PM off of Saunders Reef (south of Pt. Arena, CA)
. She quickly shot off some pictures and discovered at least one, possibly two killer whales harassing a grey whale.
The animals were ~3/4 mile offshore and last seen moving north. Another sighting that day (with likely the same killer whales) was reported by S. Albert. Earlier in the afternoon at the north end of Sea Ranch she saw 3-4 animals heading north
between 1/4-1/3 mile offshore.
2:54 - Gray whale heading north the Saratoga Passage. Spotted just north of Langley. There may be two. - Sarah Malmstead
1:02 - gray whale out in Crescent Harbor
. - Elizabeth TaylorHumpbacks
We saw Pacific white-sided dolphins in Haro Strait
again. Prince of Whales Whale Watching
SPOUTING NEWS - ST. PATRICK'S DAY GRAY VISIT For the 2nd straight year, Mariners Cove
was treated to a St.Paddy's Day Gray Whale
.This Springtime Gray visits Mariners' Cove each year. Maybe we should coin a nickname "Patrick" or "Pat". As is the typical pattern, Gray feeds on ghost shrimp close to shore and casually continues to feed it's way southwest towards Polnell Pt. about 2 miles away.
Always a delight to report our springtime Skagit Bay-Saratoga Passage Tourists. - Robert Stonefelt, Oak Harbor
Gray whale feeding in Crescent Harbor around 3:30
. My first sighting! Absolutely amazing! - Janna Harmon
10 am - Grey whale feeding in Crescent Harbor
. - Ilea Fowler and Chantelle Dawson.
Gray whale #53, Little Patch, off Camano Head in Saratoga Passage
. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu
Gray whale #49, Patch, off Camano Head
. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu
This was the largest group of Pacific white-sided dolphins in Haro Strait
Captain Rush had ever seen, and the most playful. He said they zigzagged around the boat, rolling on their sides to get a good look at passengers before rapidly dispersing. Then, in a flash, they'd be back, or maybe it was new ones, taking turns to observe these big orange mammals bobbing in the surface world. - Prince of Whales Whale Watching
Patch is back!!!
Spotted on the Island explorer at 1:05 pm off Camano Head!!!
That's right #49 is back baby!!! - Tyrone Reed
Monte Hughes on Mystic Sea reports seeing #49 Patch off Camano Head
, along with another gray whale.
11:55 am - #723 and #53 just north of Fox Spit
. - Capt. Monte of Mystic Sea Charters
11:39am - Three grays in Saratoga Passage
. One by Langley, one closer to south Camano, and one mid channel.
Saw the whale watching boat, they are focusing on the whale mid channel heading north. - Sarah Malmstead
BC whale tours out of Victoria BC picked up four transients at Race Rocks Pacific Ecological Reserve at 4:30PM
today. No IDs. - Josh McInnes
1:15 pm - T37's. North of Point No Point WA
. Mid channell. Trending west. 4 with a calf! - James Gresham
Cruising from Everett to Seattle & just spotted what appears to be an adult & 2 juveniles orcas east of mid-channel between Edmonds & Kingston
. Great start for our sailboats maiden voyage! Heading north. - Lisa Ann Huston
The Ts that attacked the Pacific white sided dolphins were the T060s
, open water porpoise hunting specialists. 5 whales in the T060 group. They were accompanied by T002Bs.
- Josh McInnes
Washington State Ferries relayed a report from the ferry Yakima in the San Juan Islands, of two juvenile orcas off Frost Island (NW Lopez Is.) at 5 pm
were spotted again late this afternoon. - James Mead Maya
10:50 am - 3 gray whales in Port Susan,
between Kayak Point and Warm Beach. - Gary Lingenfelter
3 Gray whales north of Kayak point at noon, including # 53,
reported by Liz Fincher, on the Mystic Sea.
Way off in the distance I thought I saw a porpoise so I headed the Peregrine that direction. No Dalls! Just four Orcas, the T49As, just south of Lime Kiln
2 humpback whales
west of Nugent/West Beach Rd from 12:30 to 2:30 PM
about 1/2 to 1 mile off shore; traveled north and south during time; swam to north. - Thomas Krueger
Just received a report from Kelly Clement from the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre Public Education Program Centre. She spoke to a local prawn fisherman that was checking his traps around 12:00 noon, and spotted two transients in the mouth of Bamfield Inlet
(Trevor Channel). One of the whales was quite small, possibly a calf or juvenile, and a female mother. Unfortunately there were no photographs of the animals and no one from BMSC saw them. - Posted by Josh McInnes
I got a call at 11:20PM this morning that four transients were spotted 1-2 miles off Sooke BC
traveling West. The group was said to be comprised of two adult females and two juveniles. I left from Pedder Bay and searched West to Sheringham Point with no luck. - Josh McInnes
Five orcas off Pt Arena CA about 6pm
. Confirmed one large male in the group stayed too far from shore for photos. Arrived from the south and stayed in the area. Were still there at sunset but offshore. So I did not see a direction of eventual travel. There were numerous grays traveling through
. Orcas made no move toward the grays. Grays seemed unperturbed by killers. Also 10 orcas in Monterey Bay. - Scott Mercer
5 with one male off Pt Arena CA.
Can confirm only one male. Came in from offshore from the south. Charged around breaching and tail slapping. Broke into 2 and 3. Reformed twice. Still visible but offshore. - Scott Mercer
My husband and I spotted our first gray whale of the season from our deck at our home. A single gray whale spouted just north of Camano Island head
, on the east side in Port Susan. So glad they have returned to our shores! - Vicki & Jim Mattson, Tulalip Shores, WA
12:16 - From Harborview Park in Everett
I can see at least one gray whale
on the east side of hat island heading toward Everett. Movement is pretty inconsistent. - Sara Troyer
Dan Zeik reports seeing a total of four orcas
, including 2 juveniles, while crabbing about 6-7 miles offshore of Westport WA
, at 46 46.3 x 124 10.7.
Gary Rassner-Donovan called to say he and his sons saw three gray whales in Useless Bay
(west side of Whidbey Island) from about a half mile away at Double Bluff park. He said it looked like they were feeding, doing a lot of splashing. Then suddenly they just disappeared.
250 pm - two gray whales off Rocky Point, Naval Air Station, Whidbey island
. Saw whale spray
several times and tail once. - Carrie Barker
#531 and #723 between Everett and Hat Island
. - Sara Hysong-Shimazu
Sara Hysong-Shimazu has two grays sw of Everett headed north 12:10pm
Three more Saratoga Grays have returned
once again to the inland waters and are swimming around in Possession Sound. ID'd by Sara as #56, #531 and #723. 1:20 - Between Everett and Hat Island
heading east via Jill Hein and Melissa Kaday at Langley Whale Center. 12:20 -
Now a third about due west of Everett
, heading north 12:10 - has two grays SW of Everett
heading north via Sara Hysong-Shimazu. - Alisa Lemire Brooks
spotted two gray whales heading south just north of Libbey Beach
(saw them from my home on Fort Ebey Road, Coupeville, west side of Whidbey Island). Saw them blow several times, saw their backs several times. - Brenda Dewey
Captain Max Pushak of The Mystic Sea has spotted Gray Whale #53 around 1pm off Whidbey Island
between the Clinton ferry dock and Glendale heading southbound. Possibly 2 whales
Gray Whale spotted at Glendale about 12:55 pm. Just a spot of black yards ahead of the Mystic Sea
. - Lorinda Kay
12:35 - Gray whale approaching Clinton Ferry Terminal
from the.north. - James Gresham
T018's in Boundary Pass
. - Mark Malleson
We had the T18 transient quartet. T19B, Old Floppy Fin, is the one of the most amazing whales to be seen in these waters. He's the biggest one.
Turn Pt. Light and Boundary Pass.
10:13 - whales on the west side of San Juan Island
near the county park. - James Maya
I left the T018's at around 14:00 at turn Pt.
- Alan Hobbes Buchanan
Ken Balcomb reports J pod headed west out the Strait of Juan de Fuca
past Beechy Head BC in the afternoon around 3 pm
10:53 - K pod calls on the LK hydrophone!!
- Melisa Pinnow
9:53 AM -
Just heard a brief and somewhat distant J call on Lime Kiln phones.
- Pam Ren
T011 and T011A off Tofino BC
. - Tofino Whale Centre, sent in and ID'd by Josh McInnes.
Transient killer whales in Race Passage
, southwest of Victoria. - Mark Malleson
Rhonda Reidy came across a group of 10 east bound transients near Secretary Island
in the afternoon
. I arrived as they were entering Becher Bay
and watched them move quickly to Race Passage where I left them at 1540
traveling north east for Victoria. - Mark Malleson, Prince of Whales
We saw between 7 and 9 orcas heading south along Bainbridge Island
, about 2nm north of Eagle Harbor, at 1:30pm
today. I think there were 2 males, maybe 3. - Alex Wetmore
Rick Lesslie saw a gray whale
heading north off Bell's Beach
, just north of Langley.
I came across T124C at the mouth of Becher Bay @ 1145.
I left him at 1245 exiting Race Passage
traveling east. - Mark Malleson, Prince of Whales
At about 4:45 a 3 or 4 orcas
were off north end ferry dock on Vashon
. Heading south towards dolphin point. Waning light but I may go try to find some tricky Ts. - Amy Carey
4:10 PM - Orca
sighting during a day sail feeding just north of Pt. Monroe
(the curved sand(?) bar just NE of the mouth of Port Madison
, at the north end of Bainbridge Is), through binoculars, while watching a pod of porpoise off our stern. - David Kobernuss
Mark spotted a lone transient orca feeding in Becher Bay. T124C
is a young male who travels by himself. - Prince of Whales Whale Watching
Gray whale #53 spotted off Possession Point
, and between Mukilteo and Clinton
, our first "local " gray sighting of the year, just in time for our Langley Whale Center opening!
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