2018 Encounters

Encounter #11 - Mar 4, 2018
J27 tail slap beside J26 and J36

J27 tail slap beside J26 and J36

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

L87 and J53

L87 and J53

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

K35 and BC ferry

K35 and BC ferry

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

K37 breaches in the Strait of Georgia

K37 breaches in the Strait of Georgia

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

L87 and the J17s

L87 and the J17s

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J pod with Canada geese looking on

J pod with Canada geese looking on

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

J pod in Active Pass

J pod in Active Pass

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

K26, K37, and K33 in Active Pass

K26, K37, and K33 in Active Pass

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

K pod in Active Pass

K pod in Active Pass

Photo by Dave Ellifrit

K21

K21

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

K36 tail slap

K36 tail slap

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

K26

K26

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

J19,J41, and J39

J19,J41, and J39

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

Ks logging

Ks logging

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

K16 tail slap

K16 tail slap

Photo by Melisa Pinnow

Ks logging

Ks logging

The Southern Resident orcas need your help like never before. For these whales to survive, and for their community to grow, they need us to be their voice.
BECOME A CWR MEMBER; 
together we will be a strong collective voice for the whales.

HELP
TOGETHER
we can 

Date: 4-Mar-18 

Sequence: 1 

Encounter Number: 11 

Enc Start Time: 7:45 

Enc End Time: 10:30 

Vessel: Morning Star 

Observers: Melisa Pinnow, Dave Ellifrit, Jane Cogan, Tom Cogan 

Pods or ecotype: J and K pod 

Location: Gulf Islands 

Begin Lat/Long: 48 48.913/-123 20.052 

End Lat/Long: 48 55.846/-123 15.738 

 

Encounter Summary:

After hearing resident calls on the San Juan Island hydrophones during the wee hours of the morning, Melisa, Dave, Jane, and Tom met at Snug Harbor and left aboard “Morning Star" at 0645. 

At 0745, Dave spotted blows in Swanson Channel. Nearly all of J pod was traveling in two tight groups off of Stanley Point on North Pender Island. The lead group was made up of the J16s and J17s. The trailing group was made up of the J14s, J22s, J27, J31, and J46. K21 was further out in the channel and paralleling the two groups by a few hundred yards. More blows were seen further north, so “Morning Star” left the two groups of Js and K21 to locate the leaders. The leaders were found near Enterprise Reef, and they were the J19s, J39, and the K13s.   

As the K12s, K14s, and K16s arrived from the south, they joined the leaders and waited off the western entrance to Active Pass. When the rest of J pod arrived, all the whales entered Active Pass together. Tail slaps, pec slaps, spy hops, and breaches ensued. A majority of J pod moved into the lead position, with K pod trailing. The whales hugged the northern side of the pass as they headed east. 

 

As J and K pod exited Active Pass, the whales quickly dispersed over a very large area. It appeared that J pod took a more easterly course while some Ks headed north. “Morning Star” located K14, K16, K21, K26, and K35 very spread out, elusive, and on very long dives. With no other whales in sight, “Morning Star” ended the encounter at 1030.

Photos taken under Be Whale Wise Guidelines