2020 02-11 SB Channel
Today the Condor Express hosted a group of future scientists from an elementary school for a 3 1/2 hour oceanography and wildlife cruise. Most of the work was done right along the coast and we ran from the harbor west to Campus Point. Sightings included 2 Pacific gray whales, 200 long-beaked common dolphins, 25 Pacific white-sided dolphins, and 30 coastal bottlenose dolphins… as well as numerous California sea lions.
Not far off shore from the lighthouse the white-sided dolphins located the boat and we got some fantastic looks. A few sea lions were also in the area. After moving west just a little bit a fairly large group of coastal bottlenose dolphins were at work along the coastal kelp forests. They visited the boat from time to time and we had nice views of these larger dolphins.
After moving west to UCSD, Dave headed offshore and, just a few miles later, located a Pacific gray whale. This was a small whale, moving south, and was very cooperative as it spent quite a bit of time on the surface. There were also common dolphins in the area. On the way back to the harbor, near the entrance, another gray whale was located. This was a northbound animal and we followed it for a while along the coast. It is a fun time of year in the whale migratory calendar as some are heading south while at the same time others are beginning to return north to Alaska.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store.
Condor express, and