Monday, August 31, 2009

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Zodiac Wildlife Adventure Aug 30 Noon

Our Skipper Myles "Mountain Man" took the Prince of Whales zodiac "Jester" out of Victoria's picturesque inner harbour and out into sunny skies and calm seas. Our search was for Orca, Killer Whales. We headed East to the north end of San Juan Island. Here we caught up with some of the Southern Resident Orca of J pod. Myles identified each whale as it was spotted and filled the passengers with his wealth of marine wildlife knowledge. We enjoyed the Orca as they made their way along the shorline. Spy hops, tail slaps and breaching were taken in by our passengers. We even got to witness a "spiral breach" as one young Orca broke out of the water and spun as it breached. This was a magical afternoon on the water with Prince of Whales.
Clint "Orcawizard"

Ocean Magic Wildlife Adventure Aug 30 12:15

The Salmon are jumping and those Southern Resident Orca are a biting. It is all action out there in these productive waters of the Salish Sea. Our Capt Shaun and crew took the 12.15pm Ocean Magic on Sunday August 30th, over to San Juan Island where members of J pod were actively foraging. They were traveling up and down the west side of San Juan Island close to Lime Kilm Ecological Reserve. A surprise Orca breach off the park delighted the guests on board. We watched J 27 and J 30, two J pod male Orca traveling along the shore line. Other interesting wildlife seen on this trip were Dall's Porpoise and rafts of many Sooty Shearwaters, a sea bird migrating through this area in unusually large numbers.
It was another fantastic trip with 'Prince of Whales'.
Marie, Orca-Magic

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Vancouver Zodiac Tours

Afternoon; Indian Arm photoset

Evening; English Bay photoset

With the GLORIOUS sunset

Ocean Magic Wildlife Adventures Aug 29

The sunny weather in August continues and so far it has been a great month to participate in wildlife adventures, here on the west coast. Sightings of the ' Orca ' have been plentiful too. Saturday August 29th was one of those great days where our guests saw many members of J Pod foraging off san Juan Island. The whales were mostly close into shore for our visit on the 12.15pm ' Ocean Magic 2 '. We did see a large tug boat pulling a barge loaded with timber as it traveled the waters of Haro Strait. A visit to Trial Island to view the Harbour Seals gave our guests an opportunity to view some of the interesting wildlife in these waters. Our Capt. Shaun and crew, Scott, Rhonda and Arleigh shared their knowledge with the guests on board. It was another awesome day on the water again.
Marie, Orca-Magic and Clint, Orcawizard.

Capt. Shaun took the 3.30pm Ocean Magic out of the harbour and headed us east toward San Juan island. With the change in the wind, the waves and the tide, the Southern Resident Orca, were now heading off shore of San Juan Island, where we had encountered them earlier. The whales at this time were now traveling fast toward Hein Bank so that their 'blows' could be clearly seen against the dark water. They appeared to enjoy the choppy seas so our guests were treated to great displays of spyhops, breaches and tail slaps. It was exciting to watch and everyone on board was thrilled with this wildlife adventure and filled with the wonders shared by our experienced crew.
Marie, 'Orca-Magic', Clint, 'Orcawizard'

Friday, August 28, 2009

Butchart Gardens / Vic to Van Adventure Tour

I had a BLAST on the tour Friday, documented too so you could enjoy all the sights. The videos will take me a little while to put together but in the mean time please enjoy the photosets and whale video I have created;

A complete surprise while on our way into Vancouver; Jpod fishing near the north arm of the Fraser River around 7:30pm. Here, J27 and younger sibling J39 are showing communication and/or foraging behavior; tail slaps, pec slaps, even a breach!. You can see that Mako J39 copies what his big brother Blackberry J27 is doing. It's a heart warming observation to see the two together in this way. I was thinking about them all night!

Ocean Magic Wildlife Adventure Aug 28

Our experienced Capt. Tyler took the 9am 'Ocean Magic 2' out of the Victoria harbour and headed us east to encounter some of the Southern Resident Orca. Several members of L Pod, the L12's, a family group that included a large male Orca, L 41 called 'Mega' were found off the west side of San Juan Island. We watched them forage for a while and saw other members of L pod off in the distance.Our Naturalists on board Mika and Arleigh shared a wealth of knowledge with our guests. It was a great time on the water once again and our trip included sights of Dall's Porpoise, Harbour Seals and many migrating sea birds. The summer weather continues to enhance our great wildlife adventures.
Marie, Orca-Magic
The Southern Resident Orca , the salmon seeking Killer Whales, that seem to favour the west side of San Juan Island, continue to frequent this area when they are around during the summer months. As long as the salmon, their favourite food continue to be abundant our guests on board either the 'Prince of Whales ' Zodiacs, or the Ocean Magic vessels are bound to see these much loved and mysterious mammals most days. Both the 12.15pm and 3.30pm 'Ocean Magic 2' trips, on Friday Aug. 28th encountered members of L pod off Middle Bank and Eagle Point, San Juan Island. We saw several of the large males from L pod foraging, including L 78, L 73, L 84, L 41and L 79. Even one of the young calves of L pod delighted those on board with several breaches. Many Lyon's mane jellyfish could be seen in the water in this area along with many abundant gulls. Even though the sun remained behind cloud cover for most of the afternoon, it still was another wonderful day on the rich west coast waters.
Marie, Orca-Magic