Monday, July 21, 2014

7-21-14 Breaking News About Killer Whale ONYX L87!

I am behind in my blog posting but just had to post this 'breaking news' (LOL) about Onyx L-87!!



7-21-14
...watching the whales come up island this morning I see Cali K-34, Scoter K-25, Skagit K-13, and the rest of the K13 family group...along with Rhapsody J-32, Moby J-44, a few others and Onyx L-87  - what? wait? he's supposed to be with Granny's Group - Group A - who went up toward the Fraser River late yesterday!!!...and they are still up in the Strait of Georgia..
...and now here was Onyx traveling with the K13s and five J pod - Group B - whales as they came up island and 20 minutes later came back down!



Is this a temporary visit with them or is he in the beginning stages of shifting to yet another group?

Can't wait to find out what he does next!

Friday, July 18, 2014

7-18-14 Start and End the Day Listening to the Whales

Friday, July 18th
...this morning I heard echolocation clicks over the Lime Kiln hydrophones at about 8:30 a.m....arriving at the park I saw I had missed the whales going up island...however, only being six whales I figured they would come back down...thank you very much whales...it was one family group the L55s...Nugget L-55 and Skagit K-13 are the only females who currently have 4 living offspring...
...Nugget L-55 passing a Heermann's gull...
...two of Nugget's kids: Takoda L-109 and Jade L-118...
...L118 was having some fun, just like all kids like to...
...Lapis L-103 was off from the rest of them...and last to come back down was her oldest offspring, Kasatka L-82 with her first offspring, Finn L-116...(also Nugget's first grand kid)...
...the rest of the L pod whales that these six travel with were still down island, somewhere...others were coming down Rosario and a different group was coming down Boundary Pass to Haro Strait...they would probably all meet up... ...then a late afternoon trip on Maya's Westside Charters we go see what the whales are up to...socializing - again!
 
 

...no sooner do I get home then I hear them over the hydrophones, coming up island at the lighthouse...they continued up...

...maybe I get to sleep in tomorrow...

Thursday, July 17, 2014

7-17-14 Killer Whale Nigel L-95 and His Buddies

Thursday, July 17th
...another 6 a.m. rise and shine call from the whales...
...today they went up, and up, and up...well at least to Turn Pt...
...the L pod whales came back down but J and K pod whales all continued north...

...on Maya's Westside Charters for a late afternoon trip, we met those L pod whales as they were coming up island...one of their daily 'up and turn arounds'...
...off in the distance we saw a couple whales off shore, so we headed that way...there were also some splashes not far from Nigel L-95, but I couldn't see any killer whale dorsal fins to go along with them...what was it? - Pacific White Sided Dolphins! 
...here's Nigel L-95 and his 'new buddies'...



...sometimes in the summer there are a few sightings of Pacific white sided dolphins...having them harassing the orcas is something we rarely see.



Wednesday, July 16, 2014

7/15-16/14 Whales Go Up and Whales Go Down

 Tuesday/Wednesday, July 15/16th
...it's just a blurr now...
...some go up...
...some stay down...
...still others split off...
...I watch and try to keep track of it all...
...for them it doesn't matter, because they know...
...for me it's a fascinating puzzle...
...and here's a puzzle piece to figure out...
July 15th -
...Cappuccino K-21, Opus K-16 and Sonata K-35 who had split off and not seen for almost a day...showed up the next coming down President Channel, through Spieden Channel, and down the west side of the island, passing Lime Kiln lighthouse, going down, at about 12:30...

...near 2:00pm, Granny J-2, Shachi J-19, Eclipse J-41, Samish J-14 and her family, and Slick J-16 and her family passed by the lighthouse going up island...




...an hour and eight minutes later he was coming up past the lighthouse!...he must have been visiting with his family the L12s...
...everyone else stayed down island, moseying up and back as often as they wanted...

July 16th -
...a 6:00 a.m. wake up call...from the whales that is...
...an eagle had his talons ready...
...on Maya's Westside Charters we went down island to see the whales...they were spread out for what looked like miles...we watched Blackberry J-27, his sister Tsuchi J-31 and friends - Nigel L-95, Tika K-33 and others having some social time...
...later we went to watch Granny's group - Group A - as they were coming back down from the north...


 ...later in the day we traveled down island...J pod, Onyx L-87, K pod, and the 19 L pod whales who had been here were the whales present...it seemed that the L12s had left the area during the night, as they were not seen today...
...one of my pictures showed that Notch has some new marks to add to his uniqueness...vertical ones and horizontal ones too...


...the whales were being most social...I think it was as fun for us to watch as it was for them as they played...
...sometimes the splash can almost outdo the behavior...

...one thing that came to my attention is that I noticed an intensity in some of their surface actions...it's like they were playing in stereo...(if that makes any sense)...it's just something I hadn't noticed in the past...

Monday, July 14, 2014

7/13-14/14 A Wild Day In the Whale World!

Sunday, July 13th

...it was another mixed up day - mixed up in the way of finding who was where...
...but first I had a hunting Kingfisher encounter...I caught an image of her as she began to descend...
...but she aborted the dive and moved over in my direction and hovered...
...and then moved over closer, into great lighting and hovered and hovered...
...waiting for the whales can sometimes be rewarding in other ways...
okay, back to the whales...
...K pod, minus K-21, K-16, and K-35, came up island past the lighthouse...
...and a short while later they came back down island...
...close to sunset they came back up - I heard them briefly over the hydrophones...
...earlier in the day the J16s were located coming down Boundary Pass, but instead of coming all the way down here, they turned at Turn Pt. and went up Swanson Channel...
...Granny  J-2, Onyx L-87, and the J14s weren't even found until late in the day near the Vancouver airport...were they planning on taking a trip?
...I think I need a map to keep track of them!...and it gets even better...

Monday, July 14th
...3:40 a.m. I am awakened to K pod calls over the Lime Kiln hydrophones
...okay, not unexpected, because they were down island late in the day...
...BUT, it wasn't until about 5 minutes into listening that I realized something was different (at about 35 seconds on this audio clip - a call's tone is lower - that's a J pod call! - than the K pod 'kitten calls'...then at the end of this clip more J pod calls)...a more experienced person might be able to pick out other J pod calls...but for me these signature calls were all I needed to get quite curious...
video


...could the J16s have changed direction and come back down?
...did the rest of the J pod whales who have been gone since July 8th come back in?...
...lots of questions and no answers until the whales showed up coming down island this morning, and they were moving really fast!
...there was Shachi J-19 and Eclipse J-41 - they were back!
...they hadn't been here for 5 days, so I was quite excited to see them......those J pod calls that woke me up in the early morning hours were from some or all of Shachi J-19, Eclipse J-41, Blackberry J-27 and his brother and sister, Princess Angeline J-17 and her family  and Oreo J-22 and her family, because they weren't here the day before...

...the only whales of J or K pods who I didn't see were Cappuccino K-21, Opus K-16 and Sonata K-35...
...when I heard there were L pod whales at the south end of the island, maybe the 3 unaccounted for Ks would be with them...it was late in the day when I learned that one of the Vancouver whale watching boats found those three K pod whales somewhere near the Fraser River!

...all the whales who were down island finally made their trek north late in the afternoon...they were not in close to shore and back lit in the afternoon sun...I could see members of most of the L pod whales, and I already knew that all of J and K pods were here...


...while working on this post this evening I began hearing Transient calls over the Lime Kiln hydrophones - it was about 8:30 pm and have been fading in and out for almost one and a half hours...I did see one of them about a mile+ offshore...but now it's too dark...I bunched these calls...they actually occurred about 15 seconds apart...
video

...then at 10:27 pm I heard Resident calls over the Lime Kiln hydrophones...did someone come back down last night?...
...Haro Strait - it's a busy place these days!