Encounter #60 - June 28, 2016

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

T123C spy hop
T123C spy hop

Photo by Melisa Pinnow


Photo by Dave Ellifrit


Photo by Melisa Pinnow


Photos taken under Federal Permits



Enc Number:

Start Time:

End Time:






Begin Lat/Long: End Lat/Long:







Dave Ellifrit

Melisa Pinnow


Haro Strait

48 38.91/123 12.23

48 35.76/123 14.55

Encounter Summary: 

Ken called Dave at home in the morning to relay a report of transients heading north at Land Bank. Dave headed over to CWR and could see the whales off Bellevue Point from the porch a little before 1000. By about 1025, the whales moved in and the young whales hunted briefly at the reef in front of CWR before continuing north. These whales were the T36's, T99's, and T49C (nine whales total) and they were loosely spread out as they passed CWR. We later heard that the T73A's passed Lime Kiln about an hour later. We worked in the office for a couple of hours before we heard that another group of transients had rounded Turn Point heading south and had met up with the whales who had passed north past CWR earlier and were now all socializing together off the west entrance to Spieden Channel. Dave and Melisa headed down to Snug Harbor and left aboard "Orcinus" at 1435.

"Orcinus" arrived on scene at 1452 about a mile west of the west tip of Spieden Island. The whales were heading west in at least three different tight groups loosely spread out from east to west. The lead group included the T123'salong with T36A1 and T36B1. All the groups were very active with lots of percussive behavior. We let the three groups pass us as we photographed members of the T36's, T36A's, T75B's, T73A's, T99's, and T123's. T49C and T124C were also reported to still be in the area.

Around 1520, we caught sight of T49C about three quarters of a mile to the northwest of the rest of the whales. T49C was non-directional and hard to approach so, after half an hour of trying to get an ID shot on him, we gave up and headed back to the other whales. The other whales were split into several groups that were beginning to spread out. There was still a lot of splashing going on and most of the whales appeared to be socializing. All the whales had been moving west but there were several times when the whales would briefly turn north before turning west again. At least once they began charging south with lots of splashing before slowing down and milling again. By 1640, the whales were on the Canadian side of the border a little east of the Halibut Island area. The T73A's were together and this group appeared to be trying to rest while most the other whales were socializing. We caught sight of T124C about a half mile to the northwest of the others. As we headed over to him, T49C also appeared in the same general area as T124C. We saw T124C for one series of surfacings and then he disappeared and we did not see him for the rest of the encounter.

By about 1730, the other whales began traveling southeast fairly quickly into sloppier seas while spread out in groups. Around 1805, they all took a hard right and began traveling west again toward the south end of Sydney Island. T49C was still milling about three quarter miles to the northwest of the others. We ended the encounter with T49C milling mid-strait between Kellett Bluff and Sydney island at 1814.