2019 Encounters

Encounter #69 - September 12 , 2019
U84 after sunset

U84 after sunset

Photo by Mark Malleson

T99 and T99B

T99 and T99B

Photo by Mark Malleson

20160331DAG_SJ1-179_J53 spyhop.jpg

The Southern Resident orcas need your help like never before.
together we will be a strong collective voice for the whales.

Date: 12-09-2019

Sequence: 1

Encounter Number: 69

Enc Start Time: 18:52

Enc End Time: 19:21

Vessel: Mike 1

Observers: Mark Malleson

Pods or ecotype: Bigg's (CA's/U's)

Location: Clallam Bay

Begin Lat/Long: 48 19.5/124 14.3

End Lat/Long: 48 20.3/124.18.1

Encounter Summary:

After a successful day finding all the Southern Residents except the L12's between Port Renfrew and Nitinat, Mark decided to top up the fuel tank at the Pacific Gateway Marina in Port Renfrew and see if he could find a group of Bigg's that had been last seen west bound near Pillar Point by a couple of the boats in the Victoria whale watch fleet. They reported the T099's along with U083 and U084. As Mark approached Clallam Bay at ~ 1800 he stopped to scan as it had been an hour since they were last seen and he was ~ 7 nm west of their last known position. The light was fading with fairly heavy cloud cover but the sea conditions were ideal. After a good scan with binoculars and listening for blows he continued south along the American side within a mile from shore. After several more stops with scanning and listening he made it all the way back to the last position and still no sign of them. With daylight running out he turned back to the west and ran slightly offshore of his easterly track. At 1850 he called Springtime on the VHF radio that he had had failed to find them and was going to return to Port Renfrew to join them for dinner at anchor. At that moment he spotted a dorsal fin less than a mile to the north of him off of the mouth of Clallam Bay. He was able to get the T099's photograhed along with U083 but was not able to relocate U084 after an initial sighting of what was probably her slightly offshore of the rest. They were doing close to 10 minutes dives after 3 or 4 breaths as they continued west at close to 7 knots. Mark ended the encounter at 1921 and arrived back to Port Renfrew at 1955.

Photos taken under Federal Permits