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Thursday, August 15, 2013

8-15-13 When They All Get Together

Thursday, August 15th
...these surprise days are just that - big surprises!
...early reports were whales in various places along the west side...and other reports of other whales inbound from the west of Victoria...
...by noon J and K pods had entered Haro Strait...sounded like there was a superpod again!
...some were heading straight for Lime Kiln Lighthouse...
...but there was fog, and lots of it...would anyone be able to even see a whale?...
...I could hear them on the hydrophones...and then people started calling out, "there's one!" followed by oohs and ahhhs...
...they didn't get very far up island when they turned and came back down...in those few minutes the fog had receded a bit and some of the whales moved in a bit closer...here's a bit of an idea...


...one in particular was Granny J-2...she is the matriarch of the Southern Resident Community of killer whales and what she did always touches my heart...you see, I believe she knows people are there and she sometimes comes in and says hello in whatever form it is that she chooses...
...and today she did...
...Granny was a couple hundred yards from the kelp line and she surfaced north of the lighthouse...I watched as she made a turn and with a couple surfacings was still angling in to surface near the lighthouse...she surfaced just to the north of the light - people were on that side of the lighthouse too - then she dove and surfaced directly in front of where Bob the researcher sits along with all the visitors...as she made a big arching slow dive she brought up her tail and on it was a large piece of bull kelp...she slowly went down below the surface...everyone watched as she continued on along the shore line, giving all the humans a good look at her, and maybe she got a good look at us...

...later in the day we saw of groups of whales, spread for miles...
...some were in the most unusual groups...
...Samish J-14, the grandmother of baby J-49, was with J-49 and Coho L-108...and the rest of Samish's family was not in our view anywhere but some of Coho's family members were...out where we were Moonlight L-83 and her son, Midnight L-110 were playing around with Mystic L-115...
...there was lots of kelp involved in the play groups today...

...and if one wasn't interested in kelp then back flips were another option...



...Mystery L-85 had 'his eye' on the family group of the L4s...traveling along behind them for quite a while...
...Lulu L-53 who had been with Crewser L-92 and Ballena L-90 the day before was traveling with Granny J-2, Shachi J-19, Eclipse J-41, and Spieden J-8 as they headed up island in the evening...
...Onyx L-87 we had seen offshore a ways back heading in their direction...he showed up with some nasty looking tear marks the other day...
...Opus K-16 and Sonata K-35 were traveling with Blackberry J-27, Mega L-41 and his group, along with Spirit L-22 and Solstice L-89...we have yet to see Skana L-79...
...Tika K-33 left one group and was traveling over to another group about a 1/2 mile away...
...I'm glad we saw some of the K14 family in the morning...and we also had seen Oreo J-22 and her family in the morning...
...late in the day Mako J-39 and Tsuchi J-31 were seen heading back in toward shore together, but their brother was a couple miles to the east of them...
...of all the whales present we only saw about half of them...the rest were around...somewhere!
...what a mixed up afternoon - sure glad the whales know what's going on! 

...I happened to talk to two fishermen today and they had no idea of the situation with the Fraser River Sockeye and Chinook salmon...I was surprised that they have not been informed by the fish people...



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