Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Humpback Whale, 3 Minke Whales, Porpoise and more! May 18, 2010.

We headed out with both our vessels on one of the calmest days of the year to date and with no reports of whales in our area knew we had to find whales for our guest and that is exactly what we did:)

Our first encounter was at Hein Bank where we found not one but three Minke Whales! Minke Whales are Baleen Whales that can reach up to 35' long and weigh 10 tons, at Hein Bank they feed on small fish such as Sand Lance. Two of the Minke Whales were very close together and it seemed they were possibly courting;)

As we were sat at Hein Bank we received reports of another Minke Whale near Andrew's Bay, off San Juan Island. We decided to head up towards False Bay to see if we could find any Porpoise and just in case the Minke came further south. Near False Bay we did encounter Harbor Porpoise and what we believe may have been one Hybrid Porpoise (a mix between a Dall's and Harbor). Then we heard the whale was actually just north of False Bay so off we went to investigate. As we arrived on scene we instantly recognized what was actually a Humpback Whale, not a Minke as had been previously reported. So two different species of Baleen Whales in the same trip!! This Humpback Whale looked like a pretty young animal from our observations and it is very rare to see Humpback Whales off San Juan Island.

On our way home we stopped at the Chain Islets and saw Harbor Seals, Harlequin Ducks and even a Great Blue Heron.

What a day, 4 different Cetaceans in one trip and on such a beautiful day:)

No comments: