2019 Encounters

Encounter #104 - December 16, 2019
T097

T097

Photo by Mark Malleson

T097

T097

Photo by Mark Malleson

Photo by Mark Malleson

Photo by Joe Zelwietro

Photo by Mark Malleson

Photo by Mark Malleson

20160331DAG_SJ1-179_J53 spyhop.jpg
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Enc Date: 16/12/19

Enc Seq: 1

Enc#: 104

Observ Begin: 12:50 PM

Observ End: 01:11 PM

Vessel: Mike 1

Staff: Mark Malleson

Other Observers: Joe Zelweitro

Pods: Transients

Location Descr: William Head

Start Latitude: 48 21.9

Start Longitude: 123 26.7

End Latitude: 48 21.7

End Longitude: 123 25.5

Enc Summary:

Mark and Joe left the dock in Victoria on Mike 1 at 1230 and pointed south. There had been a large group of Bigg's killer whales north of Victoria the previous day, and another group near Race Rocks later that afternoon, so they suspected there would be some action nearby. Less than 15 minutes from the harbour, Mark spotted a distant dorsal fin just northeast of Race Rocks amongst several humpbacks diving. They slowed in the southeasterly swell in order to lock on to the killer whale, and began the encounter at 1250 ~3.5 nm ENE of William Head (48 21.9/123 26.7). No other killer whale fins or blows were seen, and they moved closer to confirm a lone male Bigg's whale. T097 was travelling ENE steadily, until ten minutes into the encounter when he nabbed a small mammal, likely a harbour seal or harbour porpoise, at 48 21.6/123 26.1. The entirety of predation happened just below the surface, and within five minutes the big bull was again travelling ENE. Mark and Joe stayed with him for another few minutes, and with no further predation observed they ended the encounter at 1311 at 48 21.7/123 25.5 leaving T097 still travelling in the direction of Discovery and Chatham Islands.

Photos taken under Federal Permits

NMFS PERMIT: 21238/ DFO SARA 388

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