Sunday, October 4, 2020

10-4-2020 J Pod 'Here We Are Again!'

 Sunday, October 4th

...I find it interesting that J Pod just 'disappears' leaving the humans curious as to where they might be...the last time they were seen in Haro Strait was Sept. 28...then seen in the Strait of Georgia on the 29th and 30th...and then 'poof' no word...nothing...that is until today - Oct 4th...

...and they showed up over the hydrophones coming down from the north...

...foggy or smokey or a combination of both???...anyway the first one I saw was far offshore and way to the north...and it continued that way...flat calm, no wind, no boats, quiet enough to ear a blow every now and then...locating them wasn't as easy...

...I didn't see many but here's what I saw...always interesting, to me, anyway...












Monday, September 28, 2020

9-27-2020 K Pod Sounds from Above and Below

 September 27

since my last post...

-Tahlequah J-35 has had a new baby...given the alpha-numeric designation by the Center for Whale Research, as J-57...they have been seen several times, and every sighting helps one feel a bit more hopeful for the mom and the calf's survival...

-20 days later Eclipse J-41 had a new baby...seen only once...the Center for Whale Research has NOT yet given this calf an alpha-numeric designation...why?...that's their protocol and they said they will wait until the calf is seen again...

I worry about moms being okay...and just maybe they will be and their babies will too as well as the rest of the whales...they have spent more time off the outer coast than in these inland waters in the last few years...maybe that's a good thing...maybe by not being in here as much they are getting healthier - one can hope...

Since I've been watching these whales and of course for years before, September has been thought to be one of the best months and that's due to the salmon runs...

...on 9-26 there was word that there were whales inbound but they were not actually seen later in the day...and then today 9-27 were seen and they showed up off the west side of the island!  of course that wasn't just about or until after dark (depending on where you were), so when I heard that whales were getting closer to the island I thought I would go to the shoreline, somewhere, and see what I might see...


...that was a surprise...so close to shore...and just hanging out...talk about 'right place right time'! even if it was just for a few seconds...well, the sun was starting to fade so I thought I would wait it out a while...

...then it got dark...I waited...waited...then in the distance I heard a blow!...they are coming...wait...get to a spot where I would have the best chance of catching their surface sounds as they passed by...little did I know... here are a few clips...the screen is dark cause it was dark outside...it's the surface sounds...(I'm not very savvy on how to combine all these into one so here you go...)

surface sounds...


inhale sound and more surface sounds...  the 'inhale sound' is at about 6 seconds and it is very faint (sounds like one tone of a flute)...it is high pitched but not sharp in tone...this sound caught my attention because it is a sound that Ino L-54 has made for years...I first heard it back in 2007 and she still makes that sound...Spieden J-8 had it too, and I heard it with a couple other J Pod whales when I was actually seeing them...SO...I wondered who this was, since it was supposed to be only K Pod going by...


...surface slaps sounds...


 ...all this above surface I just wondered what their sounds were like over the hydrophones...you can hear some of the percussive sounds from their slaps and of course wild, wild vocalizations...I could see the water moving and knew they were right above the hydrophones...stunning!
..their vocals didn't last long but I had to make it in two clips...

...here is the second part of the vocals...

it appears that only one of the three groups that passed by vocalizing, because all three were very close...that's what the recording 'said'...
...If I hadn't been where I was and if I didn't already know that sound it might not have registered...but I do and it did.
I'm still curious as to who has that unusual 'inhale' sound...sounds like one tone of a flute is the only way I can describe it...it could just be one of the K Pod whales...and it too will eventually go away like it did for a couple of the J Pod whales several years ago...

...this year my ears have sure been 'called on' a lot to 'see' the whales!  
Tuning up the senses I guess!!




Friday, September 11, 2020

9-11-2020 SRKWs, Smoke, Social Time on the Hydrophones Too

Friday, Sept 11th

Today, word came that whales of J, K, and L pods were inbound.  I was so hoping they were finding salmon where the air was cleaner, because it has been very smokie inland.  In fact, so much that the ships were blasting their 'fog' horns.

Not sure if all the SRKW community came in, but there were many...

...it was around 3:30 when a few came up to the Lime Kiln lighthouse...though it was difficult to see them as they were not in close to shore.

...I noted yesterday that the sport fishing boats were not in their usual in-close-to shore locations (this is around in the area that is supposed to be a protected zone - oh, well..) anyway...I noted the location of the boats because there are times when salmon move through Haro Strait they will be farther offshore...bingo!

...so this afternoon the few J Pod whales who came up were along the same line as those yesterday sport fishers...glad there were only a few whales out there this afternoon because you could barely see them through the smoke...





...maybe these whale were scouting things out...

...later I noticed the sun...grabbed an attempted image through the trees...
...I was working on a set of images when I began to hear some faint calls over the Lime Kiln hydrophones...and oh, my...here they came and did they ever get loud!!  Here's just 1 minute of about 30 minutes of very vocal whales!

...having trouble getting this audio uploaded...sorry...hope it works this try...




...whales, I hope the air is cleaner where you are heading...stay away from those boats who want to poke you and stick things on you...find the salmon and stay safe...take care of new baby J-57...and any other new babies who might be along side of a mom...
...ask the boats if they have signed the pledge to stay away from you so you can care for your families and have quiet space for foraging, resting, socializing, etc.

...we know you got to have that this evening because it was dark, dark outside when you went by...
...wishing you all lots of salmon along your travels...

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Saturday, September 5, 2020

9-5-2020 And Baby Makes 73

 Saturday, Sept 5th

J pod had been north at the Fraser River the day before and showed up off Eagle Pt. on the morning of the 5th.  They moved way off shore and were far south when word came that there were incoming whales in the Strait of Juan de Fuca...

...a little while later it was stated that there were whales to the west of where the first group of incoming whales were...hmmm...

...everyone, the humans that is, were in for a big surprise...

...it was L Pod and K Pod whales who came in...

...I wonder if they came in because they heard there was a new member of their community...

...the whales didn't make it up to the lighthouse on this day...almost but not quite and then darkness set in...


...as you all have already learned, Tahlequah J-35 had a baby by her side.
...and the next day they were all gone...assuming back out to sea...