Do Not Copy

Do Not Copy

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

2-26-14 Thanks Granny!

Wednesday, February 26th
...I'm saying 'Thanks Granny' because of an image I discovered I had from 2012...
...the image - below - is not Granny, it's Jade L-118 when she was about 18 months old, with a fish in her mouth!!
...she was with her sister, Lapis L-103...
THIS IMAGE FROM FILE - SUMMER 2012


...and today the first whale I saw, far from shore - was Granny J-2, who stopped off County Park and spent about 7 minutes chasing after something - I'd imagine it was fish...she was going round in circles, zigging and zagging for a while and then began to move on up island...


...this all began for me at 7:43 this morning, when I heard a call on the Lime Kiln hydrophones...I knew they were near...but the roads were icy...so there would be no watching from the park for me this morning...
...I could see blows in the distance...one here, one over there...spread out whales...
...then I spotted someone closer to that ship...
...the whales were so spread that it was about 10 minutes between taking pictures of 'killer whale dots'...
...another male was out there...when he reached about the same place Granny had been, he stopped and forged...it was Mike J-26...
...others were out there, Slick J-16, Echo J-42 I did get pics of...
...except for some blows a million miles away, there was a lull of about 20 minutes...and then some blows coming up from the park...
...as they got closer, it seemed there were more and more...then some action began...not sure who the two on the left are...too far from shore...but whoever, it's always thrilling to see one breach...we must think they are feeling good because it makes us feel good watching them when they breach!
...the last of the whales to come up were Group B whales - I'm not sure if any Group A were mixed in with them...
...I saw some members of each of the family groups in J pod and Onyx L-87...Group A and B have stayed together so far this year, though they continue to travel as the two groups within the pod, for the most part...


...they haven't 'strayed' too far from 'home' - home being the Salish Sea...
...and since they've gone UP...they will most likely be back down at some point...let's just hope that again it's in the daylight with some calm seas!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

2-19-14 So Quick and So Quiet!

Wednesday, February 19th
...it was somewhere, just a bit after, I think, 10 a.m....I heard one single syllable - what sounded like a call on the Orca Sound hydrophones...and that was it!...there may have been more before that, I don't know...

...it was somewhere around 11 am. when the phone rang "you got whales by your place going south"...something like that...it was all a blurr...throwing on my gear and out the door...

...the seas were rough, lots of white caps...
...they were quiet...I heard no more calls...
...there were only two whales close enough to get any images...one was DoubleStuf J-34 and the other his mom...

...scanning produced more blows farther offshore...
...I listened to the recording...no calls at all...
I can 'guess' that it was all of J pod and Onyx who came back down, but I don't know positively...I thought I saw Onyx through my binos but couldn't find him again to get a picture...in fact it seemed they all disappeared into the white caps!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

2-16-14 Oh, My, What A Surprise!

February 16, 2014
...you can tell from the title it was an exciting day!...'short trip' 11:00a.m.?...okay...the wind wasn't supposed to start until a while later, so a 'short' trip would be nice...see some eagles, harbor seals, and whatever else...
...well, whatever else - J POD!!!!!!
...too exciting!...the hydrophones had been completely quiet...so much to my surprise when I see Ken Balcomb of the Center for Whale Research down at the docks...hum...and he was stepping pretty quickly..."J POD" he tells me - wow!
...soon Capt. Jim comes walking down toward the boat and I motion the 'whale motion' and point...he sort of smiles..."Really!" I call out to him...
...the passengers were on their way to the boat and had no idea either.
...out of the harbor and straight across Haro to the west of Kelp Reef - and what a wild ride it was!
...Ken was already on scene...and there's Granny!!! 
...I'm always looking for her to make sure she is here and right off - there she is!  Yes!
...the seas got rougher on the west side of Kelp Reef...
...the whales were slowly going north...that's D'Arcy Island in the distance...
...good practice with fin tip IDs...
...of course the boys were easy...
...all of J pod was mixed together today...nice to actually SEE them and not just HEAR them...but now we listen intently for their return...I believe that in 2010, when they did this same sort of thing, they just kept going and didn't come back down...so the wait may be a long one...



Friday, February 14, 2014

2-14-14 It's Pink !

February 14th

Anyone you would like to send this 'smooch' too? Go for it!



...back to February 11th
Those brief calls were on the Lime Kiln hydrophones.
...the 13th...

...there were two in the bay going back and forth...they were very active and coming up between the large swells...
...I began hearing a sound coming from behind me...I couldn't place it...then I saw 'IT!' - public enemy #1, in my book - a river otter!
...the place looks like a fortress around the edges with all kinds of deterrents (hopefully) to cause it to want to have its babies somewhere else...yeah, they are cute but they are extremely destructive and extremely stinky...
...later on a friend called to tell me he had seen the Space Station fly by...and he was so excited...it's really neat to see even if it is for only a couple minutes...
...the last time I saw the Space Station was in January...here's my attempt at video taping it - ha!
...we were talking about the Steller sea lions at Green Pt. on Spieden Island...several times in the last three years, while out with Capt. Jim of Maya's Westside Charters, we've seen an increasing number of juvenile Steller sea lions, but only rarely at Green Pt...this one was at Green Pt. early in 2013...
...but usually it's just the adult males and occasionally a California sea lion...now we're waiting for the moms and pups to show up there too!

Monday, February 10, 2014

2-10-14 Sounds Like They Hadn't Gone Very Far

Monday, February, 10th

...they sound much louder on this clip than they actually were.

...they were on the Lime Kiln hydrophones this afternoon.

...oops...that should say Dungeness Spit not Split :)

Sunday, February 9, 2014

2-8-14 Familiar Sounds to Our Ears

Saturday night, February 8th
...I had received a couple phone calls earlier about the whales being out by Race Rocks...
...headed this way...was a good thing, but it wouldn't be 'for sure' until they were heard on the hydrophones......J Pod call started coming over the Lime Kiln and Orca Sound hydrophones...at about 8:30 pm...

...I'm so glad to have them satellite tag free!...that probably won't last too long, but for as long as they can be FREE...then I am glad for them.

...it sounded to me like they were going north...but then the last of the very faint calls I heard were on Lime Kiln HPs and that was after midnight...they were intermittent and faint...stragglers?...split group?...or had they all gone back down and possibly out?...oh well, they know where they are and they know where to go to look for the salmon...

...it's up to the humans to start taking care of the environment so the salmon can survive...doing that may help the whales survive in the long run...


...here's a clip of some of their calls...I grouped them...



Sunday, February 2, 2014

2-2-14 My What Strange Sounds You Have!

Sunday, February 2nd

...11:35 a.m. I hear something...other than the river otter who is making a home under my place...and other than the radios that are blaring oh, so loudly, to make it go away!
...yes, it's whales - of some sort anyway!

...the calls lasted about 18 minutes...they were intermittent...some were very faint...they only came over the Orca Sound HPs...as far as I am aware...
...I strung the majority of the calls together in a 21 second clip for easier listening...there were more of the same calls- fainter or with ship noise so I did not include them...


...I'll take that as a whale fix for today and a good start to February!