SURGING off the bat! Out first glimpse of the orca was of three mature animals surfing down the swell towards us at speed! Once the pod rode the wave down the trough they quickly surged to break through the next! Down our port side, under the vessel and RIGHT out in front of the bow!
The calves followed behind shortly after, hanging around the stern to have a look at the excited overlookers (crew included)! It wasn’t long before another pulse of orca surged from up behind us! The pods were OFF! Nibbles and Dibgy’s pods were now ahead of us and lining up into their tight echelon formation! They were on the HUNT!
The pods surged us back towards land and up the continental shelf into 400m of water! WHAT were they chasing? It must’ve been something substantial to burn this much energy on the pursuit! The dives were getting shorter and their direction was chopping and changing…had they lost their prey? It’s rare that the orca miss their lunch! They hung around listening out for any signs of the animal surfacing….no trace!
The two pods patrolled the shallow waters for the entire morning, only reaching the hotspot and 1000m of water again by lunch. We were entertained by Blade and Shepp, the two 1 year old calves the entire journey south and back towards the abyss! The pair attempted their backward flops, spy-hops and more upside down swimming than we’ve ever seen!
Razor, one of the matriarchs, also Blades mum, had a very cruise-y day as we babysat the children for her! We hope she got some well-earned rest and is back and rearing to hunt tomorrow! Watch out for more Killer Whale (Orca) Watching in Bremer Canyon.