J51 and J46

J51 and J46

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J16 and J50

J16 and J50

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

L87 east of Trial Island

L87 east of Trial Island

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J35, J38, and J47

J35, J38, and J47

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J38 taillob

J38 taillob

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

20171222DKE_SJ1-191_J49 and J47

20171222DKE_SJ1-191_J49 and J47

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J27

J27

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J19 and J37 round Seabird Point

J19 and J37 round Seabird Point

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

Encounter #107 - Dec 22, 2017

Date: 22-Dec-17

Sequence: 1

Encounter Number: 107

Enc Start Time: 11:15

Enc End Time: 13:50

Vessel: Orcinus

Observers: Dave Ellifrit

Pods or ecotype: J pod and L87

Location: Haro Strait

Begin Lat/Long: 48 33.00/123 10.30

End Lat/Long: 48 23.14/123 15.45

 

Encounter Summary:

Jane Cogan called Dave in the morning to report that she was hearing J pod calls on her hydrophone so Dave grabbed his gear, headed for the boat, and left Snug Harbor at 1110. Five minutes out of the harbor, J27 was spotted foraging by himself as he headed south about a mile west of Smugglers Cove. Other than a splash seen over a mile to the southwest of him, no other whales were seen in J27’s vicinity. Since J27 was taking long deep dives, Dave soon left him and headed in the direction of the splash seen previously. J47 was found and he milled around but would not arch for an ID shot. Another whale was seen about a quarter mile to the southwest of J47 and this was probably J35. A group appeared over a half mile to the west of J47. This turned out to be a large, tight, and social group that had J31, J36, J37, J39, J40, J46, J49, and J51 in it. This group was active and were heading south-southwest in a slow, boisterous manner with the occasional brief burst of speed. The group did loosen up some and J36 and J39 drifted off to the northwest and did not return. J31 drifted off to the southeast and then did come back to the group of J37, J40, J46, J49, and J51. This group was still active and there were a few sporadic cartwheels. J35 appeared and joined the group. The whales headed south-southwest and were aiming right for Seabird Point on Discovery Island.
As the group were abeam of Baynes Channel, more whales in small groups and individuals started to show up to the west and northwest. All the whales were aiming for Seabird Point so they began to funnel together. J19 appeared a little ahead of the big group before she joined it. J45 and J47 also appeared rather suddenly and joined the group. The J22s were a little to the west with the rest of the J17s behind them. J41 appeared ahead of the J22s and then J51 finally went back to his mom. A bull that was probably J26 was another quarter mile to the northwest of the others. All of J pod filed around Seabird Point within a couple hundred meters of the shoreline and most of the whales were inside of at least one of the rocks off the point. Most of J pod then traveled southwest on the south side of Discovery Island in a loose group with some stragglers behind them. All the J16s appeared in a fairly tight group right behind the main group and J45 dropped back to hang with them briefly. The bulk of J pod began to spread out south of the Chain Islets although they were all moving slow and several whales were milling, rolling, and splashing around. J36 and J39 brought up the rear with J27 and L87 spread out in their general area. J27 joined a small group that also included J31, J36, and J40 and Dave ended the encounter with them at 1350 about halfway between Seabird Point and Trial Island. All members of J pod and L87 were present and photographed.

Photos taken under Federal Permits

NMFS PERMIT: 15569-01/ DFO SARA 388

2017 Encounters

Do Orcas matter to you?
They do to us.
Become a CWR Member and join our team that believes Orcas matter. Together we can make a difference.