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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

4-9-14 These Two Whale Look So Much Alike!

Wednesday, April 9th
...it was close...whew!...Gold Wing located whales just a short time before we were due back to the harbor...and lucky for all we had an afternoon trip on Maya's Westside Charters...another whale filled day!
It's so wonderful to see the joy on people's faces when they get their first glimpse of a killer whale in the wild...and then to hear all the questions it raises...
...it doesn't take lots of whales...two will do nicely...

...T77A was seen in the inland waters (I think the last time) in April, 2010...he - at the time people were saying 'she'...
...this unknown 'female' was traveling with T103...
...the whale hardly showed it's saddle patch marking...one person got an image with a bit of it and it was sent to researchers...word was 'unknown'...then after quite a while it was stated that it was CA58 from the California transient community...
...well, over time, 'she' morphed into a 'he' T77A...
and he got an additional notch, close to the location of the first notch...refer to the DFO official book on the transients...so the second notch was acquired prior to spring of 2012...
...and look at how T77A has grown...no confusion now on whether a he or a she!
...T77A is on the left and T49C is on the right...these two males look so much alike, everyone was calling them 'the twins'!
...they were moving at a leisurely pace, zigging and zagging, taking long dives sometimes 6 or 7 minutes...then we couldn't find them...
...after about 13 minutes I spotted one of them over near this area on the western end of North Pender Island...we had probably missed a surfacing, but they could have been down there flushing out a seal...their behavior changed and it seemed as if they had gotten something or were following it along...
...there was a period of 19 minutes when they only surfaced once...
...and soon they had body parts in their mouths...lunch!
...that's T49C with scratches on his head...
...he also had new scratches on his side, but he had them before the seal take that we saw...
...no telling where 'the twins' will show up next...together? or possibly with others...and since they showed up together and we've seen their similarities, that helps in reducing confusion on the next encounter if only on of them happens to be present!

Once again April is 
proving to be 
Transient Month!
 

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