March 2005 Whale Sightings

March 31, 2005

We had four Grays between Baby Island and Greenbank on the 31st.Capt. Hollywood ( Dale ) had them earlier in the day and called me.
Tom McMillen, Salish Sea Charters
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Windwalker Taibi reported gray whales off East Pt. in the afternoon.
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Linda Taylor of the Whale Watch Ctr. in Depoe Bay, OR reported a pod of 3 orcas close in to shore at Depoe Bay at 3 pm.
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Ken Urstadt called at 3 pm to report one gray whale between North Bluff beach, Greenbank, & Baby Island, with a whale watch boat nearby.
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Capt. Hollywood called at 12:15 pm to report 3 grays off Bell's Beach in Saratoga Passage, heading north.
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Paul Schaumburg of Great Bend Charters called to report the Hood Canal Transients from 8 - 9 am, 1 mile east of Alderbrook, traveling close along the shore to Union, moving fast to Bald Pt. & the Skokomish Delta Shallows. He also observed some scared seals & birds in the delta area.
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The pod in Hood Canal was off of Sister's Point between Union and Belfair at 07:25 AM. They were headed in the direction of Union, WA.
Howard Wilson

March 30, 2005

At 5:45 PM two grays (one adult, one youngster) passed by my Langley office, travelling through Saratoga Passage at a liesurely pace toward Sandy Point. They were being followed by more than two dozen ducks that seemed to be quite interested in what they were stirring up in the water. Later that evening, at 8:45PM I heard spouts outside my window--it was too dark to see how many whales were passing by. The sounds seemed to procede in the same direction (west to east).
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Derrick Whitmarsh of Camano Island called to report a gray whale going north in Saratoga Passage near Pebble Beach just before 4 pm, across from Langley.
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Connie Barrett of Camano Island called to report a couple of gray whales north of Camano Isl. State Park, actively feeding in circles on the surface about 300 yards offshore at 10:30 am. A small boat was approaching the whales.
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2 gray Whales in our bay most of the this week. Past by this morning going North about 8:00am In Port Susan Bay Kayak Point area. Both very large and seem to be a pair. One has a white splotch on his tail underside.they were about 200 yards off our beach, moving very slow.
Dick and Anne Vanderhoff
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Mary Pacher called to report 2 grays just north of Hidden Beach - 1 really close in, another a little further out, from 5:45 - 7:45 am.

March 29, 2005

Judy Dicksion called to relay a report of the Hood Canal Transients at Glen Ayr (2 whales seen in choppy water), then she saw all 6 of them from Hoodsport at 5:15 pm doing shallow dives & traveling fast toward Musqueti Pt.
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Lisa Osschuck called to report 1 gray whale about 1 mile off Cherry Pt, just off Birch Bay at 3:30 pm.
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Tom Perry of Camano Island called to report 1 gray whale at 4:08 pm just north of Onamac Pt, feeding close to shore, showing its fins & flukes.
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J-Pod off Sandheads at 1400 (near Steveston/Vancouver BC).
Cedric
Vancouver Whale Watch
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Janice Otero called to report a mom & calf gray whale, & possibly a third, off S. Camano Island, across from Edgecliff near Langley at 2 pm. They remained in the area a long time, apparently feeding.
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Kendall and I observed a solitary gray at 7:45 this morning for about 15 minutes apprx halfway between Edmonds and Scatchet Head, moving toward Possession Pt.
Brian Berry
Edmonds
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Richard Donovan's keen eye just spotted two Gray's heading North past Cama Beach at 7:30 a.m. We got to see them blow three times before we saw their tails and then they dove. The Whales were between two to three hundred feet off the shore.
Melanie Ford
Cama Beach State Park

March 28, 2005

Louise Salman called at 3:30 pm to report gray whales just north of Greenbank, first heading north, then heading east toward East Pt. & Camano Island.
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Connie Barrett of Camano Island called to report 2, possibly 3 gray whales heading north in Saratoga Passage, north of Cama Beach, on the Whidbey side at around 3 pm.
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2 Gray whales in Port Susan Sound at 9:00 am feeding 100 to 150 yds off shore near the beach community of Spee-bi-dah. One whale was the one we named "TrimTail" 2 years ago. This the 3rd year we clearly ID this whale. Did not get a good look at the other.
Malcolm & Tarry Lindquist
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So the Humpbacks have made it up to Nootka sound and beyond now. Three Humpback whales passed by only 100 meters from shore. There were two adult whales and one not fully matured travelling close together, investigating a bit, circling the bays, on their slow journey south. No flukes shown, shallow dives. I also heard from a couple of people who have been out flying that they saw quite a few whales offshore travelling to the NW.
Lisa Larsson, Nootka Island, BC

March 27, 2005

We saw two grays off possession point sunday around 4pm and watched them for over a hour as they moved south and then west around the south part of the point.
Thomas Elliott
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Paul Shaumborg of Great Bend Charters in Union, Hood Canal, reported seeing the Hood Canal Transients at 7:52 pm, all 6 of them spread out 3 miles north of Hamma Hamma, heading south, then crossed over to the Kitsap Penin. side still heading south at a good clip.
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I have been gone all day and did not see them leave (orcas in Tacoma Narrows). The last time I saw them they were pointed south and moving very slowly about noon. I did not take any pictures. The young one seemed to us to be swimming on its side and rolling. The others never really came out of the water much.... just the one fin and then the breathing sounds.
Mari
Tacoma Narrows
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At 7:30 PM we stood outside for about 15 minutes and listened to a couple of gray whales feeding and breathing close to shore off of Langley. They were headed south.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley
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5:00 p.m. - Two Grays in Saratoga Passage about three miles north of Langley.
Fran Abel
Langley
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters reported 6 gray whales off S. Whidbey at 2:30 pm: 2 at Possession Pt, 1 at Sandy Pt, 1 at Camano Head, & 2 by Clinton.
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Tom McMillen reported 1 gray whale between Possession Pt. and Scatchet Head at 1:40 pm.
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Shane Aggergaard of Island Adventures reported seeing two Minke whales at the north end of Hein Bank, as well as some bow-riding Dall's porpoise, including at least one hybrid and several young calves.
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I received a message from Kathy Cole of Seabeck (Kitsap Penin) that the Slippery Six were in sight traveling north in the Jackson Cove area (Dabob Bay) about 9.27 am. At 4.30pm the Slippery Six were still up north!!! and could be seen at the south end of the Toanados Penin. Kathy thought it was the same area she saw them in last Wed afternoon (Mar 23) with the NOAA team observing them.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton
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We have been watching a pod of orcas all morning in the Tacoma Narrows. They seem to have a baby which they are tending. Keeping it at the surface every few minutes. There are about 10 of them although there could be more or less because they are hard to count. The baby shows lots of white and is obviously quite small. They have been in the same area since 8:00am until at least 11:15am. Coming apparently from the south (I was asleep until 8:00... stupid me!) they are swimming right in front of my house just south of the Narrows bridge.
Mari in the south Sound
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Wendy of Langley called to report 2 gray whales at Sandy Pt, south of Langley at 12:10 pm. They had come down from Saratoga Passage about 15 minutes earlier, & appeared to be hanging around feeding off Sandy Pt.
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11:00 AM, two gray whales are traveling south, mid channel between Langley and Camano.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters called with an update to his earlier report, saying they had the same 3 grays as on Friday off Possession Pt. at 2:30 pm.

March 26, 2005

So the Grays have made it up to Nootka sound and beyond now. First I saw a Gray whale pass in a strong SE wind heading out to sea on saturday the 26'th of March.
Lisa Larsson, Nootka Island, BC
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Shane Aggergaard of Island Adventures called to report 2 grays , including "Patch", in Saratoga Passage between Lowell Pt. & Camano Head at 2 pm.
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First report was 3 Transients off William Head in bound at 1500. "Mallard" called to say he had at least 2, I waited a hour, went down to the (Victoria) waterfront and had a male and at least 1 other just not sure if there were more. Whales went east towards Oak Bay.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
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Got a call from Mark Malleson late this afternoon that he had found two Orcas. We got there late in the afternoon, and left two Transient Orcas, a male and a female, about 1.5 miles from Discovery Is., headed toward the eastern point of Discovery Island, Seabird Pt. at 5:30 PM.
Capt. Jim Maya
Maya's Whale Watch Charters, San Juan Island
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Kendall Berry on the Orca Song called to report they had one gray whale this morning off Camano Head at around 11 am.
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters reported at least one gray whale off Possession Pt. at 1:45 pm.

March 25, 2005

Twanoh State Park...the whales were surfacing just near the boat launch about noon. It looked like the two adult females were in front and the others sort of mingled together all moving east. About 5 or 10 mins later it seemed they then changed directions and did some lunging and arching dives and definitely appeared to be doing some serious chasing... almost towards the boat.... from all different directions. For almost 3 hrs the guys stuck with the whales when they could. Finally I got started back to the car about 3.30pm and saw the boat coming west at a clip and then saw whales crossing the channel south to north behind them so set up my scope again and waved at the crew. They waited and I believe witnessed another possible kill mid-channel north of the park. The last time I saw them again maybe 4.30pm patiently waiting for the Slippery Six to emerge between Union and Tahuya and sure enough The Six came by in traveling mode nearer the north shore.
Judy Dicksion, Bremerton
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We left Jpod about 13 miles WSW. of Victoria going about 4-5mph at 1630.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
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Shane Aggergaard of Island Adventures relayed a report from Jim Maya that he had left J pod at Port Angeles at 3 pm.
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Not one blow, but two in close succession, so most likely two whales--probably grays (didn't see any fins) one to two miles off Cultus Bay, southeast of the Scatchet Head Community Center: 2:30 PM.
Deborah Houseworth
Clinton
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9.20am... Dick of Glen Ayr Resort (N. Hoodsport) called to say the whales were near the Kitsap Penin opposite them milling about. I told him Steve J., WDFW, Josh L. UW and Volker Deeke were lauching at Potlatch. 9.36am Dick reported they had traveled north slowly and were in the area of Holiday Resort. At 9.40am Kathy, of MAKINPICZ, called to say they were across the canal from of her house above the Tides Restaurant.....Holiday Beach area...and were passed Union heading towards Alderbrook Resort! ...they all quickly disappeared into the cove at Tahuya (I think) at approx. 11.00am. At 11.35am the boat came out of the cove behind the transients heading steadily towards Twanoh State Park.
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton
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We were thrilled to see several orcas (not sure specific number) off Holiday Beach near Hoodsport. They were playing, mainly near the east side of the canal, and visible from our home for nearly 45 minutes at about 9:30 AM. The orcas were headed south.
Richard and Lynne Bailey
Hoodsport, WA
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Hazel Shipman of Oak Harbor called to report a sighting of at least 5 orcas including one large male, off West Beach (NW Whidbey Island), heading south at about 3:40 pm.
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters called in a report of at least 3 gray whales off Possession Pt, SW Whidbey Island. At 1:45 pm he had two between Scatchet Head & Possession Pt, about 1 mile off shore, heading toward Useless Bay, & another out by the Scatchet Head Buoy.
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Tom called back at 3 pm to report 2 gray whales feeding in the water column along the tide line off Possession Pt, & 2 more grays over by Scatchet Head.
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Shane Aggergaard of Island Adventures called to relay a report from Rod King of Great Pacific - J pod was off Constance Bank (south of Victoria), heading south at 11:50 am.
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Mary Long called to report one gray whale just off Sandy Pt, near Langley, this morning at 8:15 am.
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Judy is back on the trail of the HCT Orcas. She is heading to Holiday Beach Resort. They were reported at 9:40 a.m. across on the Kitsap side of the canal. They seem to be moving slowly North much like yesterday.
Harry Louch, Hoodsport
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3 Gray whales in Port Susan Sound at 8:45 am. 2 feeding 100 to 150 yds off shore near the beach community of Spee-bi-dah and 1 about a half mile from shore diving deep. All were working north.
Malcolm & Tarry Lindquist
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This morning, 8:40 am, one gray was spotted heading south between Tulalip Shores and the south end of Camano. At 9:00, two grays were spotted heading north in Port Susan, around the Spee-bi-dah area. Both sightings found the grays in the middle of Port Susan and too far away to identify. They were all moving along as with a purpose in mind, not feeding along the shores.
Vicki Mattson
Tulalip Shores

March 24, 2005

Carol from Glen Ayr Resort had called to say the transients were traveling north from opposite Glen Ayr at approx 9.20 am. Sometime later they were seen milling about with lots of rolling over each other, various types of breaching which continued for about 30 min. and drew quite a crowd! Carol thought they had possibly made a kill but saw no seabirds.
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton
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On the east side of Whidbey, just north the Possesion Point "marina". We spotted the plumes, and saw flukes indicating deeper dives, they were in the same place, only earlier, perhaps 10:00 AM. Cruisin' along, plumes and humps visible, and then up come the flukes and down they go. Then they are out of our line of sight.
Rob Harrison
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Orcas off Holiday Beach near Hoodsport.
Richard and Lynne Bailey
Hoodsport, WA
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Windwalker Taibi called at 8:55 pm to report at least 2 gray whales blowing & splashing at East Pt, very close to shore.
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We had the chance to observe an adult Minke whale at Hein Bank this afternoon. The animal was behaving in the usual Minke pattern of zig zagging around a rather large area. Possible second Minke though not confirmed.
Victoria Kirkland
Island Adventures, Anacortes
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I followed Hood Canal Transients today. I spotted the HCT Orcas, all 6, in front of the Hoodsport Winery at about 10:45 a.m. They appeared to be hunting, but no seagulls feeding. Jumping, splashing, rolling, tail stands and tail slaps. They were in a very playful mood for the three hours I followed them. They were moving North against the incoming tide. They stayed mainly in the center of the canal. However, around 1:20 p.m. they came over to West side or HWY 101 side of the canal. They were jumping straight out of the water, falling back, normal diving jumps, rolling, tail slaps and stands. One was even floating on it's back! Just being happy, playful Orcas. Once the show was over they started their power swim. Last seen at the Hamma Hamma Oyster Farm heading North.
Harry Louch
Hoodsport
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Two, possibly 3, grays just south of Mabana, 4:40 PM, two feeding in the shallows, and one further out in the channel. Moving north toward Mabana.
Barbara Brock
Camano Island
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters called at 3 pm to report 3 gray whales off Camano Head, S. Camano Island, going back & forth & feeding in the shallows.
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Derrick Whitmarsh of Pebble Beach, Camano Island (across from Langley, Whid. Isl) called at 3:35 pm to report a gray whale traveling up Saratoga Passage.
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We received a call from Celeste at the Depoe Bay Whale Ctr. in OR, relaying a report from the Lewis & Clark Interp. Ctr. at Ilwaco, reporting 4 - 5 orcas between the jetties, traveling east up toward the Columbia River at 11:30 am.
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Wendy of Langley called at 7:30 am to report 2 adult gray whales feeding close to shore between the south end of Whidbey Island & Hat Island, & 2 more grays 1/3 of the way further out toward Hat Island heading south.
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6:20 AM, Langley. There was a single gray whale feeding close to shore. It headed off traveling south at around 6:45.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley, Whidbey Island
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We watched the 3 orca whales moving north on Hood Canal from just north of Hoodsport, WA and followed them to the area south of Lilliwap where the Tides resturant is and they were still going North. It was a delight to see them playing and breaching and rolling in the water. The water was very calm, and they were being viewed by many along hiway 101. The time was about 10:45 am.
Sheri and Tery Botham
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At 0900 until 0945 observed 5 or 6 Orcas about mid-channel of Hood Canal. I was on Highway 106 about 1/4 mile west of Alderbrook Resort. I followed the Highway to the Union Marina and observed the Orcas until they turned North at Bald Point. During the initial observation I saw many birds milling around the water and what appeared to be a small head of a seal. The orca's were Spyhoping and rolling on their sides. I observed this thru a 50 power set of binoculars. After they finished with the seal they cruised away and made the big turn at the Great Bend in the Hood Canal.
Richard Putnam
Port Orchard, Washington
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I first saw the (Transient orca) group near Hoodsport about 11:3o AM, closer to the opposite side of the canal. I went home to get my camera and found them heading north very slowly, eating, playing and taking advantage of the sunny day, pretty much oblivious to the human entourage of vehicles following them along highway 101!! I met one of your loyal posters, Harry Louch, at Eagle Creek about noonish where we discovered they had actually turned south again! We headed south on 101 about two or more miles to find them very close to shore! We then followed the Orca north again, and stopped at Jorstad Creek pulloff and watched them pass by in "travel' mode.
Jeni Gray

March 23, 2005

I saw some whales in the Sound right by Langley (Whidbey Island).
Bruce Brereton
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An electrician arrived before noon, saying he had seen them (grays) in Langley. During our lunch break, we saw them.
Rob Harrison
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I met up with the NOAA researchers at Triton Cove. Launching about 10.45 am they went north in search of the Slippery Six who conveniently had "slipped" below near the Duckabush Delta leaving the researchers to forge ahead of them! Fortunately, Brian McLaughlin, Fish Biologist from the Pt. Whitney Shellfish Lab and his crew George Peterson and Mark Millard were working in the area and managed to contact the researchers when they saw the whales near them. Luckily the researchers were able to return and quickly to visually "latch on" to their elusive subjects with the crews' help... about 11.30 am. Hubby Don had managed to get in some flying and saw the two boats so was circling also in the same area, thus between all of them, the Slippery Six did not slip away for the second time! The six decided to visit the Kitsap Side of the canal and around to Seabeck. I understand the Six made a kill and then continued with their "after meal" play time! This happened to involve another seal I understand, who was batted around like a shuttle cock for well over an hour....and possibly survived! John D. said the boat was stationary as they observed the behavior but with the thrown seal landing sometimes pretty near to the boat they had to be ready to move out of the way fast.... Maybe the Six wanted them to join in????? About 2.30pm the whales started moving over towards the Toanados Penin making some deep dives and then slowly sufacing for a few breaths.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton.
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We got a report from one of our biologists working off the Columbia River of a sighting of at least 13 killer whales including 3 adult males, and at least mother-calf pairs. Killer whales were also seen near there on March 21 but we don't have details on that sighting.
Linda Jones
NOAA NWFSC
Seattle
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Mike Jonas called to report seeing his first whale today at 12:10 pm, from Deception Pass State Park, West Beach - it was a smaller gray whale, traveling east under the Deception Pass Bridge!
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Wendy of Langley called to report 2 gray whales - an adult & calf, south of Sandy Pt, heading south toward Clinton at 10:15 am.
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Judy Dicksion called with several Hood Canal Transient reports from this morning, also to say that NOAA Fisheries would be out with the whales today. The first report was at 7:15 am, of 3-4 orcas traveling north, reported by Hood Canal Charters north of Hoodsport. The second report was at 9:15 am, with the orcas heading north past the Hamma Hamma Oyster Farm.

March 22, 2005

I was out on our deck at 4:30 this afternoon when I heard the unmistakable blows of a gray whale. Sure enough, there was one feeding below our bluffedge. Hung around for 10 minutes or so. Lots of gull activity too. Must have stirred up the shallow waters with some tasty krill.
Sharen Heath
Langley
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Langley, 4:30 PM, 2 gray whales just came by feeding close to shore. They are headed south.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley
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Linda Taylor of Depoe Bay, OR, reported that two of the Gray Whale Watching volunteers spotted 2 orcas right off Depoe Bay, OR heading south toward Rocky Creek.
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8:45 NW Langley, The grey whale is back feeding (this is the one with the tip off of the left end of it's fluke) working it's way back and forth across the shallows.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley
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8:00 AM. NW Langley, We just watched a third whale come by! It has a notch off the tip of the left side of it's fluke. It stayed for about 25 minutes feeding and then headed back north.
Veronica von Allworden
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Well, fancy that, he (gray whale) must have turned around in front of The Dog House and come on back, because between about 8:00-8:20 there he was again feeding in front of Veronica's place on upper First St in Langley. This time three of us (V, Deb Chapin and me) got a good look at him, and V's going to look him up. Very large, with heavily splatched white on both pectoral and fluke fins, with a notch out on the fluke. He's one hungry critter!
Sharen Heath
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One gray whale off Langley at 7:45 a.m., moving quickly mid-channel towards Hat Island.
Brian Lowey
Langley, Whidbey Island
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7:40 AM. 2 gray whales (one of them "Patch") just passed by NW Langley feeding close to shore and heading to the southeast.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley, Whidbey Island
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7:30am here on First St in Langley, and two (gray) whales were feeding leisurely... one great big, with a white patch on his pectoral fin, and the other smaller. They were heading east toward downtown Langley, so those living on Edgecliff & Sandy Point, heads-up, they're swimming your way!
Sharen Heath
Langley

March 21, 2005

Charlene said she did see them up in Quilcene Bay, I believe around 1.30pm. She said they were in the head of the bay foraging and then came by the rocks that protect the Marina and did some of the usual "after-dinner" play time!
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton
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We saw a gray whale off Blower's Bluff on north Whidbey around 11:45am. The whale surfaced briefly right beside us. I also saw a blow later off Snakelum Point.
Marie Piper
Whidbey Island
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Derrick Whitmore called to report 1 gray whale going up Saratoga Passage, between Langley & Pebble Beach, Camano Island.
sb
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Ken Urstad called a few minutes after 7 am to report at least 2, maybe 3 gray whales between North Bluff Rd, Greenbank, & Baby Island, heading NE across the entrance to Holmes Harbor in Saratoga Passage.
sb
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After getting the report below, we headed out to listen for the whales, & are 99% sure we heard 2 whales blowing off North Bluff, Greenbank at around 9:15 pm.
Susan & Howie, Orca Network
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Windwalker Taibi called at 8:50 pm to report hearing what sounded like 2 gray whales passing by East Pt, Saratoga Passage.
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We received a call from Connie Bennett of Camano Island, reporting a gray whale feeding on the west side of Camano Island, just north of the State Park at 2:20 pm. They had been watching it feed for 25 minutes in the same area.
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I just watched, at 6 PM, a single gray whale half way between Langley and Camano traveling south. It was doing several shallow dives and then a deep dive. I had a good look at it in the calm water it was definitely not "patch" #49. I did not get a good look at the underside of it's fluke except to see that there was not a lot of white but there were some roundish white patches.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley

March 20, 2005

Dave Ellifrit of the Center for Whale Research called to report J pod traveling north past the Center for Whale Research, W. San Juan Island from 9 - 10:15 am, spread out. Between the March 8th sighting & the March 20th sighting, the Center was able to ID & confirm the presence of all members of J pod. We had a later update that J's were heading up Swanson Channel in the late afternoon.
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At 8:20 there was a Grey whale very close to shore feeding NW of Langley. It was traveling southeast. This whale had a very distinctive round white "patch" on it's backbone a couple feet up from it's fluke. Looking at http://www.cascadiaresearch.org/adopt.htm I'm sure this whale was Patch, #49.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley

March 19, 2005

A couple mentioned they had seen all six (Hood Canal Transients) just south of the Dosewallips moving north. They said the four larger animals were possibly foraging along the edge of the delta and the two younger ones were in trail.
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton
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Tom McMillen called at 2 pm to report two gray whales near Clinton, S. Whidbey Island, in the ferry lanes.
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We spotted 3 gray whales heading north, 1/2 way between Langley and Camano at about 1:20 PM today.
Veronica von Allworden
Langley
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12:30 PM - We have a Gray between Smith Island & West beach @ Ft.Nuegent on Whidbey Is.
Jim
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2 grays just passed kayak cove, Port Susan, at 6:55 AM very close to shore - tide is in. Full grown looks like female and a male? They were heading North changing toward a north westerly direction toward Camano Is.
Wanderofftokayak

March 18, 2005

My husband called me at about 5pm to tell me the transients were off Potlatch State Park, so they did finally surface.
Linda Sheldon
Potlatch,WA
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Got a report of a gray whale swimming north close to shore off the northwest side of Lummi Island at about 1:00 p.m. Report came from an islander at the Willows Inn.
Penny Stone
Lummi Island
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Hannah left a message that about 1.50 pm the whales were pretty active near Union, particularly tail slapping, and appeared eventually to be heading for Potlatch.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton
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Jody of the Freeland Chamber of Commerce called to report seeing a gray whale off Possession Point, S. Whidbey at 9 am.
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Judy Dicksion to relay a report of the Hood Canal Transients - seen by Hannah of the Kayak rentals at 12:20 pm, the whales were east of Alderbrook, heading west toward Union.
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Roger Clark called at 5:50 pm to report 2 gray whales heading south past East Pt, Saratoga Passage. Thanks to this call, I was able to peek out while fixing dinner & see the back of one of the whales using our scope - my first gray sighting this year! sb
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6:20 pm: We just came in from watching three grays passing by East Point. They were within 20 feet of the beach! They were spinning and feeding in the shallows. At this moment , they're right at about Bells beach heading toward Langley. They were absolutely spectacular, blowing, diving and showing off their flukes.
Windwalker Taibi
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Just saw a single gray whale in Mutiny Bay, Whidbey Island heading south. Time was 9:45am.
Doug Miller

March 17, 2005

Around 1pm 11-12 orcas near Copalis N47deg15min and W124deg15min were seen traveling north. The group contained 2-3 calves. One whale which stayed at least a mile from the 50ft charter boat we were on appeared to be a mature male, but it was too far off to tell for sure. One whale breached twice, bringing cheers from the crowd, but mostly the pod was just traveling, some porpoising. One whale with a calf did some rolling at the surface. One whale approached our boat to within 30ft early during the encounter. Orcas have been seen before in the area, but only rarely.
WDFW black rockfish tagging project
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters called at 3:10 pm to report one gray whale mid-channel between Langley & East Pt, Saratoga Passage. It was a good sized one, & heading north toward East Point.

March 16, 2005

Robbie Anderson called to report seeing one orca at 4:20 pm near Friday Harbor, heading north.
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We went to see the commerant rookery on Kellet Bluff, Henry Is., and what should we find but the six (possibly seven) Transient Orcas that Ron Bates and Mark Mallison spotted earlier in the day from land. No boats had gotten to them during the day because of the gale that had been blowing. One adult male, one sprouter, and four to five adult females. No calves. Couldn't ID them, but did get some pictures that I'll pass on.
Capt. Jim Maya
Maya's Whale Watch Charters
San Juan Island
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Jim Maya has just called, he has found the whales (Transients) off Kellet Bluff, Henry Is. going N at 1750. (Dave Ellifrit of the Center for Whale Research reported ID's for the Transients photographed by Jim Maya on as the T21's, & T18.)
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
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1 large male orca, 4-5 others going east from Trial Is. at 0900.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
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At approximately 5:15pm I spent about 45 minutes watching the group (Hood Canal Transients) move South starting just South of Hood Point. I noticed many birds flying over one spot and then noticed the whales, lots of acrobatics, splashing and horsing around with each other. I was surprised at how much contact they have with each other and how rough that contact appeared to be at the time. Saw them throwing what appeared to be a seal very high in the air several times. The group kept moving south almost the whole time while all this was going on. The group moved past Triton cove about mid channel and continued south. After about another 10 minutes it looked like they got another seal. It looked very much like the first seal, I wonder if they would carry it with them that distance. They would flip it in the air with their tail and sometimes it looked like they would throw it with their mouths.
Mike Soderstrom
Seabeck
*
The transients surfaced 15ft.in front of our research boat just offshore of the Hoodsport hatchery this morning @ 1012. They were in 8-10 fathoms of water heading north at a good clip through rough seas.
Brian McLaughlin
Fisheries Biologist
Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife

March 15, 2005

Cascadia Research Gray Whale Survey Results - To follow up on our survey... We found a tight group of 3 gray whales traveling south from the far northern end of Port Susan late yesterday afternoon. We stayed with them for about an hour and successfully identified three of them as whales previously sighted in Northern Puget Sound, ID numbers 44, 56, and 531. Although 44 and 56 have extensive sighting histories, 531 had only been sighted in the sound once before, in 2000. We received word of the whale entering Holmes Harbor later in the day, and unfortunately our survey in that area hadn't taken us quite far enough north to catch it, maybe next time... thanks to all who had their eyes on the water for us.
Erin Andrea Falcone
Cascadia Research Collective, Olympia, WA
*
I saw transients just South of Hood Point moving north but they took three breathes and were gone for good.
Mike Soderstrom
Seabeck
*
Veronica von Allworden of Langley called at 6:10 pm to report a gray whale close to Camano Head, Camano Island, heading south.
*
Carlyn Mercer called to report a gray whale heading south along North Bluff in Greenbank, close in to the bluff, going into Holmes Harbor at 3 pm.
*
At least 4 and maybe all 6 Orcas seen between Fisherman's Cove and Hood Point at 7:30 am. They were heading North towards Hood Point and making good time. They were closer to the Kitsap side of the canal.
Mike Soderstrom
Seabeck

March 14, 2005

Dick Patricelli called in a report of the Hood Canal Transients in Dabob Bay at dusk. They were heading north up the Bay, past Camp Discovery, they became very acrobatic, playing & splashing up inside the bay. He saw them again as they headed out of the bay, passing Broad Spit and heading south toward the tip of the Bolton Peninsula.
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5:45 PM two grey whales about 150 yards out from the Clinton ferry dock. Slowly headed south.
Kay Swanson
Clinton, WA
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The Hood canal transients 1/4 mile offshore Point Whitney Shellfish Lab @1555 heading north into Quilcene Bay.
Brian McLaughlin
Fisheries Biologist
Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife

March 13, 2005

Jay at Glen Ayr Resort (N. Hoodsport) had an approx. 9.00am sighting of the transients going south. Then Cindy Sund of Hood Canal Charters who lives about 2 miles north of Hoodsport reported she was out kayaking south of Dewatto Bay (Kitsap Penin side) and the whales came around foraging about 9.30 am. Cindy said she witnessed several kills and then the whales moved north. At 10.00am they were seen continuing north passed Eagle Creek. Finally the transients appeared... as reported by phone. We watched from along the roadside until they had passed Zelatched Pt., Toanados Penin. at about 3.30pm. and were continuing north at an amazing speed. We could see many saddle patches (and notice some as quite different from the others) as they rode over the waves. At 4.30pm they were directly in mid-channel east of the Shellfish Lab then went under for a long time before we saw them entering Quilcene Bay in a traveling mode with long underwater dives and heading as if towards the head of the bay.
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton, WA
*
Tom McMillen called to report a gray whale off south Whidbey, between the Clinton ferry dock & Sandy Pt at 2:40 pm, heading due west toward the shore. He called back a few minutes later to report there were 3 of them, including "Patch" & a smaller whale. Patch is the resident gray whale with a large white patch on his right side, toward the back. Tom said it looked like there was a tear in Patch's right fluke, but they all looked healthy as far as he could see. Cascadia Research was contacted. At 3:30 Tom called back to report the whales had traveled south almost to the Clinton ferry , then turned & were heading back north toward Sandy Pt, zig zagging in & out along the shoreline.
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Judy Dicksion called to report the Hood Canal Transients near Dosewallips, 2:50 pm, in the shallows, then heading north into Daybob Bay at a fast rate. She'd had reports of them down south in the Canal earlier in the morning, heading north.

March 12, 2005

Tracy Diller reported seeing what looked to them like a Minke whale, E. of the Keystone ferry, Whidbey Island, traveling west. They watched it surface every few minutes, & said it had a small dorsal fin. They saw it at 1:30 & 4:30 pm, 150' offshore.
*
Judy and her husband found the HC transients about 2:40 PM just East of Potlatch State Park and Tacoma City Lights boat launch area. About center of the Bend, off Tahuya, feeding. I saw at least three from my deck. However with the white caps and the distance it is hard to tell. There is a white boat, respecting their space, watching. Hopefully they will send in a report as they have a ring side seat. There is a lot of slashing going on with tail slaps.
Harry Louch
Hoodsport, WA
*
Shane Aggergaard of Island Adventures called to report they found one gray whale traveling off the west side of Whidbey Island today. They first found it SW of Admiralty Head, & left it 1 mile north of Bush Pt at 2:10 pm, heading south at a pretty good rate.

March 11, 2005

5 Killer Whales seen at the mouth of the Hamma Hamma River @1140. At least one adult and calf. Whales were breaching, spyhopping, swirling around etc. I followed them north a mile or so (as pull-outs permitted). Last saw around 1330.
Lori Salzer
*
Judy Dicksion found two reports of the Hood Canal Transients. Nancy at the oyster farm saw three orcas going north past Beacon Pt at 1:30 pm, first close to shore, then moving mid-channel as they headed north. Then at 2 pm, Doreen Berard reported 3 or 4 orcas in Triton Cove, close to Triton Head, then heading north mid-channel.
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Murray heard a blow and there off in the distance was a gray. Location 1 mile north of Edmonds ferry and out about 300 yards.
Robin Lancaster
Edmonds, Wa

March 10, 2005

Jim Abbie of Whidbey Island called today to report sighting a gray whale at 5 p.m. north of Ebey's Landing, W. Whidbey Island. It was about 10 yards offshore near the kelp, heading north.

March 9, 2005

When I checked with Josh later, he said they had found them and were "in trail" of them coming out of Dabob Bay. I could see all six whales black fins slicing cleanly through the water.
Judy Dicksion

March 8, 2005

Ken Balcomb & Dave Ellifrit of the Center for Whale Research were with J pod, spread out between Edmonds & Kingston at about 4 pm. By 5 pm they were just south of Possession Pt. They left them just south of Pt. no Pt (Kitsap Peninsula) around 5:30 pm.
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Jeff Hogan of Killer Whale Tales received a report of the Seattle orca pod off Alki Pt, heading north at 11:30 am, again with 1 large male fin present.
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Just received a report of a pod of orcas off Seattle at 8:20 this morning. The description was a large pod with 1 male with a large fin - sounds like J pod, but we don't know yet.
Susan
*
Mary Klein of Bremerton called in a report of orcas off the Seattle/Bremerton Ferry, at ~8:20 am, 20 minutes out of Seattle. The whales were heading west, away from Seattle, moving quickly. There was one male with a very large fin. There were 14+ orcas.

March 7, 2005

Just heard from a friend of a friend that there were a bunch of Orcas off of South Beach, south side of San Juan Island.
Jim Maya, Maya's Charters
San Juan Island
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Nancy (a new orca fan contact) from the Oyster Farm at Beacon Point, said some whales were in the cove by them (to the south I believe) about 8.30 am and then there were four others seen near Mike's Beach Resort at about 8.45 am. Another orca fan called in later to say the whales were near the bluffs north of Lilliwaup at 10.30 am heading south towards Hoodsport. The last report had three of them passing 2 miles north of Hoodsport and still heading south at 11.30 am.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton

March 6, 2005

Dick Johnson of Glen Ayr reported possibly 5 orcas (maybe didn't get to see the smallest) passed N. Hoodsport at 7.05 am going south. Then Kevin Miller, with family, got to see "a group" of transients about 8.45 am pass Hoodsport, move around Bald Pt (S side of Kitsap Peninsula) and on towards Tahuya. The last report had three orcas about 3 miles past Alderbrook Resort with them heading east but performing a few antics about 100 ft from shore! The location given was the 12 mile marker which possibly begins where Hwy 106 to Twanoh branches off Hwy 101..... so the whales may have been near to Twanoh State Park perhaps.... quite a way inland! Sounds like this could have been the ones who were also reported as being seen near Sisters Point (Kitsap Peninsula) at 11.15 am ...possibly on returning westward. Sounds like pretty good activity still in the south end.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton
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Orca pod off Sisters' point, near north shore of Hood Canal, 11:15 am. They were coming from the area of Tawana State Park, but on north side of canal. They are headed in direction of Alderbrook Resort/Union WA.
Howard Wilson
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters reports the gray whale between the Dyes Inlet Bridge & the Navy destroyer near Bremerton. He's noticing a lot of boat traffic that is unaware of the whale & tend to be going right over it.

March 5, 2005

The whales passed Glen Ayr Resort, N. Hoodsport, at 11.58 am traveling north. Cindy also continued the good news that 2 miles north of Hoodsport the whales were seen along the west shore (in close enough for photos...mind you) with lots of activity. Cindy also said there were only three of them .... ..maybe the other three were across the channel in "sneak mode!" Later Hannah of Kyak Rentals at Union, said she had heard cars were parked just outside Hoodsport (don't know which direction) but appeared a "Whale of a Show" was being held at around 11.45 am... no more specifics.
Judy Dicksion
*
Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters reported the young gray whale between the two bridges in Dyes Inlet near Bremerton at 3:10 pm.
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While staffing our display at the Penn Cove Mussel Festival, I talked to a gentleman from Olympia who had sighted the Hood Canal Transient orcas near Hoodsport on his drive up to Coupeville in the morning.
Susan, Orca Network

March 4, 2005

About 3 minutes after leaving Race we ran into a number of Jpod whales including the new baby J40, westbound. Mark will be sending photos to the center for verification. Whales far apart, no sighting of J1. Contact was at 1645.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
*
Tally ho....the whales are still here!.....Waaaay down south mind you, west of the Alderbrook Resort, Hood Canal, an excited new orca fan tried to describe the ensuing antics that were being performed....but apparently it was not so much a private showing, as first believed, as the whales kept it up (at a slower pace I understand) when the research boat approached them around 2.00 p.m.
Judy Dicksion,
Bremerton
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Tom McMillen of Salish Sea Charters called at 2 pm to report the small gray whale at the entrance of Dyes Inlet, heading under the bridge into the inlet.

March 3, 2005

Today at 4 pm I noticed one gray whale feeding at whiskey creek beach. one was there on Tuesday as well...he came up every 2 to 4 minutes and stayed mostly in the same area. he was still there when i left...Whiskey Creek Beach is about 15 miles west of Port Angeles on the Straits of juan de fuca....
Barb Nelson
*
West from Race Rocks towards Sooke...T41, T41A and T44 appeared about a mile west @ 1524. While we were with them T14 came over from off shore.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC
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Judy Dicksion called to say her husband Don had finally found the Hood Canal transients at 5 pm, between Hoodsport & Potlatch, heading south.
*
Well tonight, about 5 p.m., the Hood Canal Orcas were right in front of my house just South of Hoodsport. About mid-canal across from the Hoodsport Winery. It is very apparent after watching them for about an hour that in the "Orca World" it is O.K. to play with your food. There was a lot of diving activity, rolls, tail flashes, splashing, surfacing together, whales going to the right as whales went to the left. However in all the mealay I would occasionally see a small head surface with no sense of which way to go. It was to small for the baby Orca so I am sure it was a seal. Then an Orca would either surface from under it or dive onto it. Only to see the seal bob up again in a few minutes. They were still active at 6, but working their way North.
Harry Louch
Hoodsport

March 2, 2005

Lone male transient east bound from Pedder Bay at 1700. Sorry no id. Been at least 2-3 Elephant Seals at Race Rocks the last week, 8-12 Stellers and 1 California sea lion. Also 11 Stellers on Whale Rocks on Feb 27th.
Ron Bates
MMRG, Victoria BC

March 1, 2005

I spoke with fishermen at the Quilcene Marina early evening today (Mar 2) and one said the transients were in Quilcene Bay about 2.30 pm and passed the marina towards the head of the bay (to the north). The other fishermen said the transients' "routine" is to go to the head of the bay as the seals and sea lions around the beach and marina will swim up there when the transients are in the area.
Judy Dicksion
Bremerton
*
I had an adult male orca pass by 50 meters from shore here at Nootka yesterday at 16:15. He had a big straight dorsal fin, a little wavy at the trailing edge, and was travelling at a steady pace southbound. Three breaths followed by a long dive observed twice. There are lots of sealions and harbour seals in the area right now.
Greetings from Lisa Larsson,
Nootka Island

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