© Five Star Whale Watching/Katie Smith. Image — A Bigg’s Orca male surfaces near Parry Bay.
Humpbacks, Orca, Seals, Sea Lions, Pelicans, Eagle and a Sea Otter
We began our search heading out southwest for this morning tour, toward Race Rocks Ecological Reserve.
East of the lighthouse we ended up spotting two Humpback Whales. These animals were very elusive and only briefly showed themselves before going down into a deep dive, vanishing. While we waited to see where these animals would surface again, a Brown Pelican was spotted floating on the water. This is a quite rare sight for the Salish Sea area, for all who were “birders” this was quite the treat.
We then stopped and checked out the Race Rocks Ecological Reserve area, seeing a wide variety of marine life. we got to observe Harbour Seals, Stellar Sea Lions, California Sea Lions, a Sea Otter and a Bald Eagle, another treat for birders.
We then headed back out eastward following the shoreline and on this route we encountered a couple Bigg’s Orca! These animals, also know as Transient Orca, are the ecotype that exclusively eat marine mammals such as seals, sea lions, porpoise and other whales. These animals were identified as T10’s, a mother of ~ 55 yrs and her 19 yr old son, noticeable from his mother by his large non-curved dorsal fin.
The wide variety of marine life on display here in the Salish Sea made for a spectacular trip this morning!