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Sightings

100912AdmiraltyHG©Howard Garrett

Recent whale sightings in the Salish Sea

(Puget Sound, Northwest Straits, Gulf Islands and Georgia Strait)

Sightings Summaries Archives

Sighting Report Archives
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To find viewpoints along shorelines from Deception Pass to Olympia, go to:
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The purpose of Orca Network's Whale Sighting Network and Education Project is to encourage observation and increase awareness and knowledge about the Southern Resident Community of orcas (J, K and L pods), and foster a stewardship ethic to motivate a diverse audience to take action to protect and restore these orcas' critical habitat.

The orcas' steep population decline of 20% from 1995 to 2001 is a reflection of the problems and issues facing the greater Puget Sound marine and watershed ecosystems: declining salmon runs, PCB contamination, and the effects of a rapidly increasing human population including habitat loss and resource depletion. Through a volunteer Whale Sighting Network, sightings and observations of this orca community are gathered and disseminated to researchers and volunteers, and posted on our website.

Summarized Sightings map HERE

May 11

GRAY WHALES - May 11 - Possession Sound - 07:48 - 3 in that group. There is another grey whale in the ferry lanes mid channel too. -Danielle Pennington
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07:40 - Just saw backlit blows in Possession Sound. Right off Clinton Ferry Dock and very close in. I didn't see any fins so presume baleen whale (Gray) and looked to be moving to the southeast. LOTS of boats out there. Everyone be whale wise! -Debbie Stewart

May 10

May 10 - Southern Georgia Strait - 20:03 - Just saw our fellow from earlier today cruise by heading south.
16:40 - Hi We have a Grey whale off the marina entrance feeding! Point Roberts, WA. -Sandra Scott
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May 10 - Admiralty Inlet - 08:42 - Gray whale spotted off Bush Point heading north- east edge of northbound traffic lane- seen from Victoria Clipper 5. -Jason Mihok
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May 10 - Possession Sound - 10:00 - 2 gray whales SSW of Gedney Island, moving towards Everett slowly. One was identified as Patch. The San Juan Clipper left the whales at 1000. -James Greenway
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May 10 - Port Susan - 23:16 - Whale feeding of North Tillicum Beach been there for at least an hour.
10:08 - We have had 2 Gray whale sightings in Port Susan this morning both were heading south from Tillicum Beach / McKees beach line. No photos...John C Storbeck

May 9

Thu May 9 - Eastern Juan de Fuca - Gray whale off Partridge Point, Whidbey Island. -Photo by Ariel Yseth, May 9, 2019
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11:38 - Out with Puget Sound Express and 3 grays in this area here (off Partridge Point, Whidbey). Having a great trip! -Dave Williams
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Thu May 9 - Port Susan - We had three Grays feeding at Tillicum Beach Camano Island at about 6:30 AM this morning 9 May. They were last spotted crossing to the McKees Beach area on the east side of Port Susan where we lost them. We have been seeing Grays in Port Susan just about everyday for the last week or so. -John C Storbeck
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Thu May 9 - Possession Sound - I saw one (gray) feeding just north of sandy point heading toward Seawall at 9:30 a.m. -Megan Patricia Scudder
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07:51 - 2 or 3 grays heading toward Langley dock from Sandy Point. -Luanne Seymour
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A single grey whale was feeding this morning, at about 6:40am, at Sandy Point Beach. I watched for about 10 minutes before it began heading west slowly, towards Langley. This particular spot (about 1/4 mile west of the Point itself) seems to be favorite for the whales, as I is where I usually see them. It sits below the high bluff, just below Wateredge Drive. -Cheers. Jeff Rice
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MINKE WHALES - Thu May 9 - 16:18 - Minke off Libbey Park now, going south. -Photos by David Haeckel

May 8

Wed May 8 - Juan de Fuca Strait - 19:00 - Ken Balcomb called in a gray whale report from his mobile home on a bluff, about 2 miles west of Ediz Hook in PA. It was traveling SW out the St. of Juan de Fuca, today, 5/8.
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Wed May 8 - Eastern Juan de Fuca Strait - 14:00 - Sitting in my car watching the waves at Joseph Whidbey State Park and a gray popped up to say hello. It was traveling slow, long dives about 100 feet off shore headed north. The photo is not great, but look for the dark spot in the water. -Shelly Greybeck

May 7

~11:00 - Beautiful gray whale off Partridge Point, Whidbey. There were three of them there milling. -Photo by Ariel Yseth, May 7, 2019
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Tue May 7 - Eastern Juan de Fuca Strait - 19:15 - Looked like 2 or 3 whales spotted at Nas Whidbey. -Photo by Daniel Snow, May 7, 2019
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14:56 - I just read your post from 3hrs ago today about feeding locations of Grays; I can't tell if it is 2 or 3 but I am up on the cliff at West Beach and there have been grays here since this morning. I didn't take a photo because I am so high up it's not clear. -Tammy Thompson
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Today was one of the most beautiful days I've seen on the great Salish Sea. We found a gray whale...I think the same one from Saturday) near NAS Whidbey, Steller Sea Lions, two very cooperative puffins, a lot of very pregnant harbor seals, and two very elusive minkes around Eastern Bank. -Bonnie Gretz
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~11:00 - Left dorsal ridge one of the three gray whales milling off Partridge Point, Whidbey. -Photo by Ariel Yseth, May 7, 2019
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Tue May 7 - Possession Sound...From there we headed out to Hat island where we found gray whale #49 Patch swimming around with another large gray whale. Neither of the whales were having to dive deep as they fed off the shallows of Hat island. From there we headed south a little ways toward the Mukilteo ferry crossing where we found 3 more gray whales. Gray whale #56 and one other whale were hanging out together and were soon joined by another gray whale that was not identified. We got great looks at this group as one of the whales was hanging out at the surface for long periods of time and they even came over to check out the boat. As they branched off toward the Snohomish River delta we moved off to join up with one more lone gray whale. This time it was #723 Lucy and he was headed into the shallows off of Hat island. We got a few lazy fluke shots from Lucy before he began to head north and we had to make our way south. On our way back toward Everett we came across Patch and his friend for a few last looks with the sun pouring down like crazy. It was a spectacular day on the water and our trip was very successful with all sorts of different wildlife encounters!!! -Tyson, Island Adventures, May 7 encounter report HERE.
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1200 -1500 - Spent 3 hrs observing 5 grays off the east side of Hat Island. Photos to follow shortly (at least 2 fluke under sides.) -Gary Carter
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11:47: IE4 with the gray, due south from the south end of Gedney. Exhalation visible from the MV Suquamish. -Durand Dace
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11:43 - Just saw a gray whale in the distance headed toward Everett from Hat Island. -Missy Main
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10:54 - Grey whales in the Clinton - Mulkiteo ferry lane. And 2 more over by Everett. Can see the blows from the ferry. -Alice Runk

May 6

SOUTHERN RESIDENTS - Mon May 6 - J27 off of Colville Island on the morning of May 6th. -Photo by Mark Malleson, 2019
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Looks like Js ended up heading way out to the banks (So. of San Juan Island). Boats with them on AIS are way offshore of False Bay/south of Discovery Island as of 17:00. -Monika Wieland Shields
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13:56 - (Jpod) Heading past Eagle Point now...Erin Corra
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13:35 - J Pod off South Beach northbound. -Monika Wieland Shields
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Season's greetings to the resident Orcas, nice to see them again. Pod traveling east to west on Monday, May 6th. Several orcas were close to island in Flint Bay, Lopez Island. Lots of breaching and tail slaps. Most boats doing a good job of not interfering with orcas, one commercial smaller boat was right in main orca pathway though...Sally Reeve
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Mon May 6 - E Juan de Fuca Strait - 19:35 - one [gray] whale sighting, appears to be milking around. Moran Beach, W Whidbey...Was able to get a video! He/she is surfacing every 60 seconds or so right now. -Stephanie Salem
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17:20 - Whales are still there, just saw them blowing again. Deborah
~16:45 - due west from West Beach Road, just north of Fort Nugent Road. Looks like at least two whales. Too far away to determine specifics. They were In the area for at least 30 minutes. -Deborah Bias
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Mon May 6 - Port Susan - 08:49 - Just spotted a Whale in Port Susan, about 1/4 mile south of beach 3 on Camano side!...He is just going in circles about 1100 feet off beach 3. -Cindy Todd Stulken
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Mon May 6 - Possession Sound...It wasn't long after we entered Possession Sound that we a clustering of gray whales at the southern end of Hat Island. It turned out to be a group of five, #49, #22, #723, among them. They were socializing in a way that the crew had seldom seen before, so tightly grouped that all whales could have been touching, and rolling at the surface of the water, pec fins and flukes visible above the surface as they rolled. Was love in the air? We may never know for sure, but it certainly seemed plausible...The gray whales were back to their social antics by the time we returned to Hat Island. By this time we confirmed that #22, #49, #53, #56, #531, and possibly #383 were all present. The most incredible part of this second encounter had to have been when Earhart #22 mugged the boat! She seemed content to just hangout right beside us, and as we drifted with engines shut off, she circled the back of the boat. You could count the barnacles on her face, and see her full contour beneath the waterline. An unreal end to a truly remarkable day on the water. -Island Adventures.
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HUMPBACK WHALES - May 6 - N Puget Sound - 11:48 - Just saw a humpback out front of my home on Jefferson Point going North towards Kingston. Fairly good sized. He was close in but I didn't get a good photo of him! -Corrie Beamer Urquhart

May 5

BIGG'S TRANSIENT KILLER WHALES - Alaska transients T128 (L) and younger brother T125A (R) swimming south in Haro Strait after T128 made a kill (less than 5 minutes!). T128 spyhopping and showing off his trophy of intestines. If you zoom in on T128, you can see meat with dark skin in his mouth. -Photos by Ariel Yseth, Spirit or Orca, May 5, 2019
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Jane Cogan called Dave in the early afternoon to relay a report that T125A and T128 had been found near Beamont Shoal. Since they weren't that far away, Dave grabbed his gear and headed for Snug Harbor and left in the boat at 1420. "Orcinus" arrived on scene around 1445 about halfway between the Beaumont Shoal buoy and Seabird Point on Discovery Island...Full report & image at Center for Whale Research Encounter 32.
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Sun May 5 - E Juan de Fuca - 17:22 - Grays at Deception Pass! There were 2 and right about here (map shows off West Beach at Deception Pass). I was pretty shocked to even get to see them! One came super close to shore momentarily! -Jami Cantrell
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1500 - We saw at least 3 whales from the beach at Joseph Whidbey State Park. Not sure what kind because they were pretty far out. They seem to be heading west. No dorsal fins...There's a couple blows that you can see and they come up where you can see backs briefly. There were 3. Kinds far away though. -Tiffany Garey
(video reviewed...presumed to be grays -alb)
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~14:00 - A quick trip to Rocky Point (Oak Harbor) near Naval Air Station WI around 2pm today proved to be a fruitful outing. There were at least two different whales hanging out. Thankfully, I remembered to snag my camera as I ran out the door...A bit about the behavior today, none of the whales ever dove deep enough to show their tail flukes. One appeared to be "spy hopping" which I sort of captured in one of the photos I sent you. Was one of the whales a different species? There is a photo of two whales and they look a bit different, to me...however, I am far from an expert. I know my frequent whale sightings are less than ideal and hate that I am seeing them under such circumstances. However, I have really enjoyed getting to watch them and today was quite the sight with the Olympics in the background...Thanks again for all you do! -Sincerely, Casie McClellan
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Anacortes Trip: ...We found 3 gray whales right off the NAS Whidbey runway and decided to spend some time with them. One animal was identified as CRC-2246 but the other two remained unidentifiable. -Island Adventures
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12:36 - Sarah Barnes reported at least two gray whales off West Beach at Deception Pass State Park about 500 yards offshore. No direction given.
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Sun May 5 - Port Susan - 19:19 - At least 3 gray whales at Warm Beach about 300-500 yards out from the south portion of the beach. -Scott Wilson
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08:59 - There is a gray whale currently feeding off the east side of Camano Island, middle of island, (cross street Mt. View). Seems to be slowly moving south with the tide. -Cheers, Mike Fox
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Sun May 5 - Admiralty Inlet - 08:50 - Report from Al Lunemann of a gray whale north of Ebey's Landing few hundred yards out slowing moving south.
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Sun May 5 - Possession Sound - 19:30 - Grays. 7 distinct blows in my view from Rucker Hill in Everett. Cheers! -Amy Willoughby
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14:57 - Grays 53 and 22 between Everett and Gedney now. Closer to Gedney. (Everett PM Trip)
12:43 - Grays 49, 22, 531 off SE Gedney. 4th whale no ID. (Everett AM Trip) -Renee Beizel, Island Adventures
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12:12 - At least one gray in the ferry lanes, still northbound. Ferry deck full of excited people.
10:51 - Good morning! Around 10:45, Emily McLoughlin reported watching one, maybe two, grays off Glendale beach approximately 300 yards from shore "heading toward the ferry, away from Possession. SO COOL!" Boats were passing on both sides of the whale(s). -Durand Dace
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11:33 - Third whale is 53. We've left them northbound still together.
11:04 - Well we are here now with 3 grays traveling north close to Whidbey. Still south of ferries. #56, 723 and another no ID yet. -Renee Beitzel, IA
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Sun May 5 - Deceased gray whale Harborview Park, Everett. -Photos by Alisa Lemire Brooks, Orca Network, May 5, 2019
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09:04 - I'm seeing what looks like a dead gray whale off of Harborview Park in Everett. No movement at all. We called it into NOAA Fisheries & they already knew about it. -Connie Mitchell
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Sun May 5 - Minke whale, not a humpback, ~1/mile offshore between Ebey's and Pt. Partridge slowing heading north noon Sunday. -Al Lunemann

May 4

Sat May 4 - J pod/L87 Georgia Strait. See reports & images in Whales and Dolphins BC Report.
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Sat May 4 - Mike Graff called about seeing at least two males and others about 2 miles off the Port Angeles breakwall at 4 pm yesterday, 5/4. One spy-hopped about 50 yards from some sea lions. No photos.
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Sat May 4 - Burrows Bay - 08:43 - Single Gray (I think) in Burrows Bay south of Anacortes. Not really moving in any direction, seems to be feeding...Spotted from land. Close to shore. Seems to be staying in this area and heading up and down the coast a bit. Saw it slowly head north toward Anacortes last night around 7:30, and now it's back. We've seen it in the same spot for 2 days now. -Josh Kelley
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Sat May 4 - Eastern Juan de Fuca - Out to Dungeness Spit and Hein Bank looking for any kind of cetacean. Finally found two minkes and then two grays at NAS Whidbey. I couldn't identify this one. A lovely calm, warm, sunny day! same whale, other side. never got close to the one further south. -Bonnie Gretz
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Hello Alisa and Friends at Orca Network, Had a great day out Saturday, May 4th, with PS Express (RedHead) out of Port Townsend with Bonnie. Meliss and I saw our first Minke in the middle of the Strait of Juan de Fuca (about 4817'58.9"N 12303'42.5"W). We also saw a few Grays off of the bluff on West Beach Road off Whidbey. Unfortunately no Orcas however great day with Bonne, Coleen and Chris. -David Haeckel
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12:35 - Stealthy gray whale! Likely feeding in that area, down for very long times and surfacing for only a quick second.
11:45 - Gray whale appears to be headed back south now.
11:37 - Gray whale appears to have slowed down but still moving north. I also recorded that last down time - nearly 11 minutes!
10:30 - Gray appears to be headed north. No camera on me so no pics, but definitely not the same whale at Keystone the other day.
10:15 - I took dogs for a beach walk and I heard a blow. Gray whale off Hastie Lake turnout. -Rachel Haight
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11:00 - Gray. Just spotted one blow. We are 2 miles north of Hastie Lake. Still headed North. -Krisit McClure Glesman
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Sat May 4 - Possession Sound - #383 was with 22 later in afternoon off SE Gedney. The whales IE4 saw today: #22, 49, 53, 383, 531 and a few unidentified because they were hardly surfacing in the shallows or too far in on delta. -Renee Beitzel, Island Adventures
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11:40 - Seeing at least 4 near Everett at 11:40. -Cindie Lang
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06:40 - Seeing four grays near Jetty Island this morning, their backlit blows are beautiful in the morning sun. -Lori Christopher
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Sat May 4 - Out to Dungeness Spit and Hein Bank looking for any kind of cetacean. Finally found two minkes and then two grays at NAS Whidbey....A lovely calm, warm, sunny day! same whale, other side. never got close to the one further south. -Bonnie Gretz
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Hello Alisa and Friends at Orca Network, Had a great day out Saturday, May 4th, with PS Express (RedHead) out of Port Townsend with Bonnie. Meliss and I saw our first Minke in the middle of the Strait of Juan de Fuca (about 4817'58.9"N 12303'42.5"W). We also saw a few Grays off of the bluff on West Beach Road off Whidbey. Unfortunately no Orcas however great day with Bonnie, Coleen and Chris.The Brandt's Cormorant was from another day, just thought it was beautiful. -David Haeckel
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COMMON DOLPHINS - Sat May 4 - I have a lot of photos & video of what really looks to be dolphins (not porpoise) (confirmed common dolphins - alb) in south Puget sound Case Inlet. West of Heron Island, but closer to east coast of Harstine Island. They were feeding on a school of fish, along with a giant pack of sea lions and a seals. The activity was in the morning of Saturday, May 4th, between 8am and noon (yes, it was continuous for that long). -David Morton
We shared David Morton's photos and stunning videos with Dave Anderson, Cascadia Research: "I saw all three of the current common dolphins in the video, Big Back Notch, Top Notch and Cinco. They have been feeding with the California sea lions for a few months in Case Inlet".

May 3

Fri May 3 - Strait of Georgia - 15:39 - I was just able to ID L87 and Jpod up this way today. They are currently foraging south of the Little River Ferry terminal in their usual Chinook spots. Maybe with the closure they are finding more? I wish them all good luck hunting today. -Nick Templeman
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Fri May 3 - There were more than 50 (!!) Bigg's/transient killer whales reported in the Salish Sea today! We encountered a group of 17 of them this afternoon in San Juan Channel, including 5 little ones less than 2 years old! This photo is of T49A1 and T123D. This afternoon we encountered the T49As, T65Bs, T75Bs, T75Cs, and T123s just south of Friday Harbor in San Juan Channel. Between 1:30 and 2:30 PM we followed them as they traveled north to Yellow Island...a memorable encounter with a group of 17 transients..., 5 of which were under 2 years old! So many fins!-Monika Wieland Shields
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Well that's a trip for the record books! Outside of Friday Harbor we encountered not one, not two, but five families of our Marine mammal-eating Bigg's killer whales traveling together in a big tight group. Besides just the sheer number of them being so amazing to see each family also has a new calf under the age of two! It's no joke that the Bigg's are going through a baby boom with the ample supply of food here for them! Not to be outdone we saw some amazing eagle action on the trip as well. T75C1 keeps with mom T75C and their buddies today. Photo by Sara Hysong-Shimazu, May 3, 2019. T49A5 with mom and friends. She's sure getting big! Photo by Jeff Friedman, May 3, 2019 -Maya's Legacy WW
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Jane Cogan called Dave at home in the early afternoon to relay a report of a large group of transients heading northwest up San Juan Channel. Dave grabbed his stuff and headed to Snug Harbor and left in the boat around 1440. "Orcinus" arrived on scene at 1505 about a mile and a half southwest of Jones Island. The T49As, T65Bs, T75Bs, T75Cs, and the T123s were in a single tight group traveling slowly northwest and appeared to be resting...Full report & image at Center for Whale Research Encounter 31.
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Fri May 3 - Penn Cove - 10:38 - Gray whale was still slowly heading east.
10:23 - Gray in Penn Cove. Long dives. Either heading east or making slow circles. Between Monroe Landing and the Wharf. His back appears briefly. -CeCe Celia Aguda
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Fri May 3 - Saratoga Passage - We live about 800/900 north of Hidden Beach. On the water. I have not been keeping a number count of the gray whales who feed in front of our house - I guess I thought everyone else was. But we have had quite a few during the day that we can, and do, watch and enjoy. When the tide is out we can see all the holes the whales have dug to get to, or stir up, the ghost shrimp. Many mornings there are quite a number of new holes showing that the whales were in digging through the night. I take many pictures of the trails of holes to send kids and grandkids. However, that does not help you with a number count. Not sure how I can help you or if you would even like input - if you have specifics please let me know. -Diane Billingsley
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Fri May 3 - Port Susan - 17:42 - At least one Gray appears to be feeding near the Country club on Camano....Watching thru binoculars from the other side of Port Susan at Kayak Point. -Nate Trujillo
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17:00 - Hi, just wanted to report that I saw a whale "minke" I believe. It was south of Livingston Bay, Port Susan. I don't know if it was in trouble or not since the depth in that area can be 2-10 feet deep. This was around 5pm 5/4/19. -Zach Blakeslee (sounds like a feeding gray whale - alb)
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Fri May 3 - Possession Sound - Several sounders still around...Today we had #22 Earhart (by herself), #49 Patch and #531 (together) between Gedney and Everett. Some interesting behavior from all three of them today! #22 was logging a LOT while they were around and seemed to keep watch of their movements when they came near. Then we found #383 hanging out with #723 Lucyfer on the SW side of Gedney. For the afternoon we had #531 on the delta as well as a few too far in for IDs and then #723 joined along with #56! A first for me seeing him this season. -Renee Beitzel
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11:43 - here is two grays just north of the ferry lanes. But interesting report...could be something else out here for sure! -Tyler McKeen
(Those two grays were #383 and #723 - Renee Beitzel)
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2 grays were headed south at that time, no orcas out here and I've been at work on the ferry since 5am....I was about 1/2 mile from the grays, had a great view and I'm sure they weren't orcas. -Melissa Simmons, WSF
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10:10 - I am new to this area & live up the hill from Old Town Mukilteo I am seeing 2 large, black animals swimming near the ferry lane between Muk & Whidbey. Unfortunately, my binoculars aren't strong enough (putting that on my shopping list!) so I couldn't see the detail. One of them breached which is what caught my eye and then I spotted 2 of them and watched for about 10 minutes. They were quite black, however. I was on a whale watching tour last weekend and saw several gray whales. These today seemed much blacker & smaller, but our home is at approximately 6th & Park in Mukilteo, so I wasn't close enough to get a good look. -Beth Lewis
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13:15 - At least one grey whale right off Beach Camp, North Edmonds. Feeding & diving. Right now. -Photos by Heather McRae Tabisola, May 3, 2019
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Fri May 3 - South Puget Sound - A Gray whale was Northbound just below the Narrows airport at about 7 pm 5/3. I did not see if he continued under the Narrows Bridge or not. A boat was chasing him and the boat continued North. I did get pictures from Day Island with a zoom lens....Not very clear but hopefully helpful. -Karen Caldwell
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17:00 - Spotted a gray whale, and got photos, from Chambers Creek Park (Chambers Bay Golf Course). We were on the pedestrian bridge over the train tracks and watched the whale progress from right to left, toward Ketron Island, then back toward us. This gray whales extremely damaged/injured fluke is revealed as s/he dives in southern Puget Sound. -Lisa Holliday
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Fri May 3 - S Puget Sound - 09:25 - I just received a call from an islander (Anderson island) saying there was a humpback at the Steilacoom dock at 9am. No direction of travel. -Belen Bilgic Schneider
(reported as humpback, a gray was confirmed in the area later - alb)
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07:00 - The ferry crew saw it on the Steilacoom side at 7:00 am also. Fun that it is hanging around. Of course, I was on the 7:30 am. Missed both! -Lane Sample
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May 3 - Haro Strait - I saw a lone humpback heading north mid channel off Lime Kiln at ~ 4:30 today. -Karen Sziel

May 2

Tue May 2 - I got a lead from folks using binos at the Land Bank on San Juan Island. Orcas, one big male for sure. They were found in Haro, moving north toward Moresby Is. 137s. Here are T137A, and T137B - Turn Point. -James Maya
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Thu May 2 - Rosario Strait - ~14:00 - one gray spotted off of Shannon Point/ Washington Park where Guemes Channel meets Rosario Strait. -Laura Domela
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Thu May 2 - E Juan de Fuca Strait- 14:17 - At least one gray off Moran County Park southbound.
10:41 - At least 2 grays off Moran County Park (West Whidbey). -Rachel Haight
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07:28 - Stephanie Salem reports seeing blows of at least 2, possibly 3 gray whales off Moran Beach, West Whidbey heading south. (in between Deception Pass SP and NAS Whidbey)
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Thu May 2 - Possession Sound - 16:00 - gray whale feeding on delta off Jetty Island as seen from north Everett. Also seeing at least 2 more west of Jetty Island near public boat ramp. Now seeing another blow so total of 4 gray whales. -Sandra Pollard
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Thu May 2 - South Puget Sound - ~18:35 - A smaller whale headed North towards the Narrows Bridge below the Narrows airport at about 6:35 pm 5/2. Only got a little clip of the spout...Karen Caldwell
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DALL'S PORPOISE - Thu May 2 - Next to the dock at Snug Harbor...Dall's porpoise! -Photo by Jim Maya, May 2, 2019

May 1

SOUTHERN RESIDENTS - Members of J pod around the San Juan Islands. -Photo by Justine Buckmaster, May 1, 2019
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Wed May 1 - 20:24 - Terrible pictures but we left the 8:05 ferry from Orcas just now and saw 6-8 orcas. They seemed to be hanging around right outside the ferry terminal. Once we got going we lost sight. Made our day! -Amanda Nesbitt
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19:48 - Maija with WSF called to relay report 1 orca in Upright Channel and 6 others in Harney channel...all just milling about.
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16:45 - Orcas south of Orcas Island heading west. Seen from Friday Harbor to Anacortes ferry. Probably 6 to 8, one male and one juvenile. No ID yet. Seen with Dorothy Rosenbladt. -Bob Rosenbladt
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5/1/2019 What a wonderful May Day it was! We encountered Southern Resident Killer Whales in Rosario Strait socializing and generally being playful. We realized quickly that it was J Pod when while we were watching the main group at a distance, three individuals approached us quite closely. They were L87 Onyx, J37 Hy'Shqa and J49 T'ilem I'nges. Shortly after passing us, they joined up with the rest of J Pod, and while I wasn't quick enough to capture photos, we witnessed cartwheels, spyhops, lobtails, and breaches! Later we found a couple of Minke Whales near Anacortes. -Justine Buckmaster, Puget Sound Express
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07:58 - Orcas milling West side of Orcas Island. Below Mt. Constitution. Presumably J pod. 10 or 12. May 1. -Mareth Griffith
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COASTAL KILLER WHALES - Wed May 1 - Oregon - 08:37 - Dawn Keller called to report 3-7 orcas off Yachats, OR. They are on the bluff and observed the animals about 1/4 mile off shore and saw a lot of fins and spouts, slapping in the water, churning water, seals hugging the shoreline. Hunting? Pod was traveling northbound.
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GRAY WHALES - Wed May 1 - E Juan de Fuca - 14:19 - I believe there is two grays possibly three off of West Beach Road (west side of Whidbey Island, west of Oak Harbor, near Swantown). Lots of spouts and breaches. I believe they are headed south. -Shannon Heuvel
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14:29 - We moved down to West Beach Road now. On Whidbey side. At least half a mile out. Don't need binoculars to see. My sister in law Shannon messaged you too.
13:32 - We are at Rocky Point Beach (West Whidbey) and there are spouts, more than likely grays. Thought I would let you guys know. -Alishia Mountcastle
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Yesterday (May 1), I was out at Rocky Point which is just down the beach from Moran SP and watched one, maybe two, gray whales. They seemed to be swimming close to the surface as I only saw blows and the occasional dorsal fin. They or It was moving north toward Moran in about 20-30 minutes. Unfortunately, I did not have my camera but they never dove deep enough for a tail fluke. I hear they are out there again this morning and hope I make it out there in time with camera in hand to snap some more photos for you guys. Thanks for all you do for the whales!! -Sincerely, Casie McClellan
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12:53 - one whale. Lots of birds, maybe feeding? Staying in a small area, surfacing every few min. (video confirms gray - alb) One blowhole sighting, same place (off Moran Beach, West Whidbey)
11:08 - presumably more grays!...Little guy came up once and didn't come back up, so I assume he/she is moving through. (off Moran Beach, West Whidbey). -Stephanie Salem
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1:20 - Popped up 100 yards off Coupeville ferry on right side, safe! Phew.
1:18 - And yep he's crossing ferry lane now and ferry heading out.... Did a big surface right before departure so hopefully captain saw that.
1:15 - I walked over and let ferry know... Current path of travel puts him right in the ferry lane about departure time.
12:55 - Slow westbound travel towards ferry.
12:53 - And now he just popped up right in front of me of course.
12:30 - saw a breath, not a sign of anything since. Drove to the beach 1.5 miles west of where I last saw whale, haven't seen anything.
1228 - whale stopped feeding and started traveling west close to shore,
11:28 - (Alisa asked if whale looking still near death) Probably not. I know feeding behaviour and when I first got here, super close to shore, not moving, not feeding, and saw the fins and how thin. Shortly after he resumed feeding and has just been seemingly doing that. I could've caught him in a nap, or break or something?
10:23 - Oh he's so skinny He's practically on the beach. He could be dying. He's trying to feed in the shallows but very slow moving. Part of his pec is injured but healed, not sure if orca bites or what So he's still currently slowly swimming in shallows but he doesn't look good. He's small too, maybe a juvenile. -Rachel Haight
Wed May 1 - Admiralty Bay - Alie Perez, Cascadia Research: "Took the best right through the catalog and didn't find a match".
(For a brief time it was thought this whale might be near death, all stranding coordinators were put on alert. The emaciated whale with severe pec fin injuries eventually left the bay and swam towards deeper waters of Admiralty Inlet, s/he could not be relocated after swimming off. - ALB
)
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10:06 - Looks like he is definitely headed south now...but taking his time rolling I front of the houses, lol!
09:45 - do you watch other whales? I think there is a gray just off the coast of Whidbey by Keystone ferry....South of keystone ferry, in front of the development, rolling in the shallows. (photos below) Jennifer Holmes
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08:55 - Kat called to relay report from Marcus Raymond who observed a gray whale close to the Coupeville ferry. The whale was heading out towards the channel more directionally northbound.
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May 1 - South Puget Sound - 18:20 - It's a gray. It had gone south into Eld. I saw it coming north out of Eld. It headed east and is currently heading south into Budd. Deep dives. Saw it surface 6 times now. Just heard "woo hoos" from some house near the top of Cooper Point on the western shore. I have contacted Jessie.
18:05 - Scott says he saw a whale's blow out front of Boston Harbor. 10 feet high. Only one surface/back. I'm looking and haven't seen it. Super choppy. It headed north out of Eld. Then went east across Cooper Point spit, hung a south into Budd for a few surfaces and then headed north toward Dana Passage. -Kim Merriman
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MINKE WHALES - Mon May 1- Rosario Strait - There are in fact two minkes here just south of the ferry lanes (off Anacortes). Whether or not they're the same ones is up for debate. Seen at 12:00 pm from the Saratoga. -Justine Buckmaster
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08:06 - Mike at WSF Operations called to relay a report of 2 whales (reported as minke) breaching off Shannon Point, Anacortes.


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