June 12, 2009

It's A Humpy!

This is a week of firsts, I am telling you. Today we were treated to another rare sighting and that was a Humpback Whale. Even the captain said she has not seen one of these in the waters directly around San Juan Island in two years. The whale did not seem to realize the frenzy that it was causing with the wildlife watching companies. Clearly it was just there to eat and not be a media star. Capt. Nancy, Jeanette and I fell under the whale's spell just like all of our guests on the MV Sea Lion. We anxiously awaited every blow and exclaimed as excitedly as anyone when we finally saw the tail fluke. The seemingly young animal was travelling, or possibly feeding, shallowly so there was only one deep dive and that is when we saw it's large beautiful tail. It was a great experience for my first humpy sighting.

When we finally tore ourselves away from the Humpback as it swam off into the sparkling waves we decided to go in search of seals and baby eagles. We cruised along the coast of Henry Island as it guarded the entrance to Roche Harbor and then over to Sentinel Rock. There we relaxed with the Harbor Seals as they indulged in an afternoon nap in the sun. A couple of Oystercatchers kept watch for yummy tidbits of food up in the rocks.

Spieden Island was quite today with it's golden grasses along the southern exposure. As we came up to the large eagle's nest a guest spotted an adult Bald Eagle cruising along the face of the island and then up into the nest. Slowly the front of the nest became visible and as the adult hopped out of the nest and onto a branch, up popped an eaglet. It is no longer grey and fluffy, but has started to get it's adult feathers. At one point it stood up tall and looked right at us with the parent sitting nearby.

What a cool day with our majestic wildlife and this week has been one wonder after another. The puffin and the Humpback and then a baby eagle. What magic abounds in this beautiful place. So, thank you from all of us to all of you and we at San Juan Safaris will...

See You In The Islands!
~Tristen, Naturalist

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