Tharrrr she blows!

No, you are not reading a recycled post, this is just the second time we go on this trip. 😉

As we enjoyed the first time around on the whale watching trip as much as we did on the day before yesterday, we booked a second time (today) straight after returning.
So, today, a third day in a row, we travelled to Telegraph Cove to get on a boat. And for the third time, it was cold. Very cold.

And again, the Johnston Straight delivered! After going out to a matriline of resident orca we found they were too far away, and still getting further out. We stopped pursueing them and went back to the Humpback whales we ignored on our way out. The biologist on duty (Jackie, a former dutch resident teaching biology in Rotterdam) is studying them and got really excited after discovering one if ‘her’ whales had a calf, and must therefore be female!

Leaving them, and with Jackie in desperation, we headed out for our true goal: orca.
And did we find them!

Eventually, the captain of our ship maneuvered us quite a long distance from a group of orca, feeding along the coast of Knight’s Inlet. As they were getting closer and closer to pass on the right, more matrilines appeared on our left and front leaving us surrounded by orca!
One of the families decided they would change their route, which led straight under out boat! I’ve got one amazing shot of an orca, appearing from under the boat and slightly breaching the water. In one word: awesome!

All in all, we saw about 30 killer whales from several families and about 6 humpback whales. A really productive day, mammal-wise!

Finally, we drove from Telegraph Cove to Campbell River, where we are staying one night before going to Tofino. Looking forward to being there!

Tharrrr she blows!

Today has been all about whales and trying to find them. And not any regular type whales, we are targeting orca!

First off, we left from the hotel in Port Hardy for a one hour drive to the boat stationed at Telegraph Cove. After a quick an well made coffee (thanks!) We embarked on a 3.5 hour voyage into Johnston Straight to go hunting for the elusive killer whales.
Right after we left the port the captain heard other whaling vessels chatter about a pod of ‘transient’ orcas hanging around quite a distance away. So he gunned it. 2 500 horsepower Caterpillar engines revved up and made us go fast. 😉

There’s actually a lot of non-connected groups and extended families amongst the recognized types of orca (not subspecies!); resident, transient and offshore orca. The first and latter types eat fish, the transient pedal live between the gulleys and the open ocean and feed on marine mammals. Offshore orca very rarely come anywhere near the shores while resident orca live right off the beaches and islands.

To avoid boring everyone with the chase of orca and humpback and the excitement amongst us, here is a list of animals we encountered:
Eagle
Dall’s porpoise
Orca
Humpback whale
A lot of birds, I don’t know the names of. 🙂

Tomorrow an equally exciting day as we are going on the hunt for grizzly bears!