January 23, 2011
WOW, what a great morning!!! The transients were vocal on Flower for 3 hours! Then they headed South in Blackney Passage past the lab. They were moving pretty fast but our count was at least 17 orca! They went into Johnstone Strait and headed East and we heard a few faint calls. They are now at Boat Bay island still continuing East, thanks to Jim Borrowman for the update.
Marie & Leah
23 Jan 2011 11:06:04 PST
The transients that came South by the lab on January 23rd were T071's, T086A's, T087, T088, T090's, T124's. Thanks to Jared & Jim for the update!
On March 22, Mark Mallseon of Victoria, B.C. had Transient orcas T87, T88, T90's, T30's and T124's, about 12 in all, from Trial Island about 11 am, traveling east to Middle Bank, still headed toward Salmon Bank. He left them at 3:15 pm.
April , 2011
Transient orcas at the south end of Saltspring Island (many thanks to Neptune for locating the group and whale sitting until we arrived!) The group first appeared to be heading southeast, but what followed was only the first of many direction changes that we witnessed during our encounter. The travel pattern would have been best described as a series of large circles. At least one, if not several, seals lost out to these top ocean predators. We could see oil slicks on the water, and the gulls plus one bald eagle joined in for scraps. Following the meal there was some play time, and we were fortunate to see some spyhops, tail stands and even hear some of those eerily, amazing transient vocals. The whales that I could ID in the group were T100, T100B, T100C,T100E, T90, T90B and possibly newish calf with T90, T124, T124D and T124E. T100 B appeared to be calf-sitting T100E for mom, while T100 worked on getting lunch. T90 appears to have a tag, very visible on her left side dorsal fin, and showing as a dark bump on her right side dorsal - photo attached (photo taken with 300 zoom lense and cropped to show detail).
Joan Lopez, Naturalist, Vancouver Whale Watch
April 15, 2011
Graeme Ellis of Canada's Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans called in a report of his encounter with the large group of Transients in Sansum Narrows and Ladysmith Harbor, B.C. from April 15th. They had a total of about 31 orcas total, IDs include the T100s, T36s, T20 & T21, T124s, T65As T90s, T99s, T137s, T87s and T37s. They found them in Swanson Channel after we got the call from Tamar Griggs, then followed them down as they went into and back out of Ladysmith Island, and left them around 7 pm up by Yellow Pt.
April 17, 2011
Ken Balcomb and Dave Ellifrit of the Center for Whale Research arrived on scene just north of East Point (48° 47.08 N; 123° 02.51 W) at 12:15 p.m. The transients, who had been traveling north into the southern Strait of Georgia, had just turned around and came charging back out of the tide rip and began some intense milling around Rosenfeld Rock which had 30-40 Steller sea lions on it. There were thousands of Bonaparte's gulls working the tide rips. The whales briefly harassed one sea lion but apparently let it go. A couple whales continued to cruise around the rock while the rest of the whales on the calm side of the tide rip milled around the area in a social kind of way. There was another group of about 10 T's in the area but were on the rough side of the tide rip so we did not make it to them. We ended the encounter at 48° 47.23Np; 123° 02.37 W, around 1:30 p.m.as the whales turned north again into the sloppy waters of Georgia Strait. The whales photographed by CWR: T36, T36A, T36A1, T36B, T36B1, T37, T99, T99A, T99B, T99C, T124, T124D, T124E, T137, T137A, and T137B. Sixteen whales total.
Center for Whale Research, San Juan Island, WA
May 25, 2011
On Maya's Westside Charters in the afternoon we headed up Boundary Pass toward East Pt. where transients had been spotted. The 1st group we encountered were 4 whales, which included T19B (I could see three other whales with him & am assuming his constant companions T18, T19 and T19C, but I didn't get pictures of them for proof of presence.) We left them and headed toward Alden Bank. Just north of Sucia Island we encountered a 2nd group: T124C, T124A, T124A2, T124A3 and T124A4. We continued on and encountered a 3rd group: T100, T100B, T100B1, T100C, T100E, T101, T101A, T101B, T102, T124, T124D, T124E, T124A1, T36, T36B,and T36B1. They changed direction and the 2nd group and the 3rd group joined up heading back in the direction of Pt. Roberts.
On our way home, traveling through Boundary Pass we encountered a 4th group: T137, T137A and T137B. A grand total of 28 killer whales.
Of course I'll be posting to my blog about this exciting day on the water.
Jeanne Hyde, San Juan Island
May 28, 2011
The T002C's and the T023's went West in Cormorant Channel on May 27th, then the T101's, T036's and T124's did the same yesterday!
May 29, 2011
A group of 5 transient orca were located at approximately noon on the east side of Galiano Island, heading northwest. The group was later ID'ed as the T124A group and T124C. There appeared to be a calf that was approximately 1- 2 years of age (see photo, right). They were in a steady travel mode during our encounter, with some social interaction observed between the two youngest as they travelled.
Joan Lopez, Naturalist, Vancouver Whale Watch