An overcast day out in the canyon today made for excellent Orca interaction. Spotting a pod of 6 including a mother and calf and one huge bull just off the shelf. We followed them watching them surface every 2-4 minutes milling around a fresh oil slick. With shearwaters flying over head and a dusky whaler shark circling below we knew we had just missed a kill.
Upon briefing our passengers before the voyage we tell them to look out for; oil slicks indicating a predation, bird swirls above looking out for scraps on the surface and the whales foot print. A disturbance in the water cause by the downwards stroke of a whale’s fluke (tail.)
The first pod led us to 2 more pods and before we knew it we were following a tribe of 16. All spread out evenly across our bow surface swimming westwards.
We lost eyes on them momentarily thinking they had taken a deep dive before seeing them surface 50m from the stern greeting our passengers on the rear deck.
The energy had changed and the Orca began playfully rolling over each other engaging in what we assume was a social behaviour. We watched them as they frolicked on the surface to the whoos of our passengers before taking another dive.
Following the direction of the Orca we relocated ourselves back on the bow and locked eyes on a big splash 100m out. They were breaching!! Projecting themselves out of the water and crashing down with a splash. The calves also started to breach trying to get themselves right out of the water but settling for a back flop instead. We clicked away at our cameras and tried to record as much footage of them socialising as possible capturing tail slaps thrown in ever so often. Our guests clapped and cheered at the orcastrated performance, a fantastic way to finish a day.
You just never know what your going to see out in the canyon.
Until next time
Bremer Canyon Crew