Monday, April 17, 2006

Transients / Mark Malleson

We had a trio of transient killer whales today which included T14, T93, and T101b. This was the same group from yesterday. We watched them swim past Discovery Island and head north up Haro Strait. I got a report from an American researcher that they turned south near Kelp Rf. and were on a line for Mount Douglas Park. I kept an eye out for them after work from shore anticipating that they may swim through Oak Bay. Just before dark I saw them skulking around Chatham Island near the seal haulouts.

Mark Malleson

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Rainbow / Mark Malleson

Race Rocks lighthouse under rainbow
photo by Mark Malleson

Friday, April 14, 2006

Transient killer whales kill steller sealion / Mark Malleson

On Saturday April 8th we got word from our American associates that a group of killer whales were milling off of Partridge Pt.(the west side of Whidbey Island).
We had a fortunate group of whale watchers which had decided to head out on a late afternoon trip shortly before we got the information.
We took the run out east and found a group of 5 transient killer whales hunting an immature male steller sealion. After watching the whales ramming and leaping on the lion for over an hour they succeeded in immobilizing and drowning him. We had been keeping an eye on a mature bull killer whale who was lurking around on the outskirts during the hunt which we later identified as T14 (better known as "Pender" by the whale watching community) who is a single male transient which we see fairly regularly throughout the year. Although he was not involved in this hunt, it looked as though he was joining the hunting party for scraps as we were departing the scene.
The other killer whales were later identified as the T49's and T65's who are better known from south-east Alaska.

Mark Malleson
(Prince of Whales skipper)