WORLD WILDLIFE DAY!
“When do they jump?” Is a VERY common question we are asked while out on expeditions with the Orca. They perform aerial behaviour specifically breaching for a variety of reasons. Today we can only assume they were celebrating world wildlife day!
Today went a little something like this: breach breach breach breach breach… you get the picture.
It was clear that this week has been exceptional and today was no different. We almost saw orca out of the water more than in…..
Interactions began slowly at first with Digby and his female friend continuing on from yesterdays curiosity. Their ‘honeymoon’ looks to be going well as they continued frolicking and rubbing upon one another. Before we could even comprehend what was going on, we had breaching ahead. So naturally we were curious and followed. As we moved with the large swell, we had the big boss lady Split Tip side slam her body over and over again directly in front of us. She now had our attention along with ALL the other orca in the close vicinity. Once she was done, the other three pods replied…. each orca took its turn to breach. Large males were CLEARING the water with their bodies from almost a mile away. Only a blip on the horizon but they were still a part of the festivities!! Closer in, we had juveniles and calves. Each trying their hand at an aerial move.
Then it was on, these pods moved with the pulsing swell and wind with no clear end or destination in sight. The breaching continued with the big boy Chalky making sure we had enough photos of him out of the water! Words don’t do much justice here so check out the photos.
The youngsters were trying backhand cutbacks with their tails in our wake but Split Tip couldn’t let them have all the fun! She breached upside down and completely cleared the surface just to show she is THE matriarch. With only two five minute breaks, it was hard to know where to look as we didn’t want to miss any action.
What a way to celebrate world WILDlife day. These orca are truely wild.
From all of the Naturaliste Charters Crew: We love our job!