July 19, 2019

Bigg's Killer Whales Near Moresby Island

Jordan | M/V Sea Lion | 07/19/19 | 1:30pm

Today was a really lovely day out on the water! I really enjoyed speaking with all our guests and answering all their great questions about our wildlife!

Captain Sarah, Naturalist Piper and I headed out of Friday Harbor and headed up north towards reports of killer whales. We headed up through the San Juan Channel and past Speiden Island. We boated around Stuart Island, across Boundary Pass and into Canadian waters. Here we went towards Moresby Island and Portland Island towards a point off Salt Spring Island. Here we found orca whales!

We were able to identify these whales as two Bigg’s killer whale families: T37s and the T34s. These beautiful whales travelled pretty close to shore as they scanned the waters for any signs of harbor seals or porpoises. Their main strategy is stealth so they were keeping an attentive ear open for any prey noises nearby that they could sneak up on!

Then we watched the little baby orca splashing and playing in the water. Just like with our infants, they are especially playful! We even saw his little tail fin slapping the water making little spashes. Potentially these two pods were having a playdate! Because we spotted another tiny whale that was around the same age, swimming within the other pod. 

Seeing these powerful animals in the wild never gets old! Everyone was so stoked to watch these whales.

Eventually, we headed back towards San Juan and enjoyed the beautiful boat ride. What a great day!