Epic Wildlife Sightings: 15 blues, 12 humpbacks and more.

Bob Perryblue whales, common dolphins, Condor Express, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz Island

A pair of very active humpback whales went on a tail-throwing spree, simultaneously, side-by-side.

2017 06-16 SB Channel We experienced epic wildlife sightings today and closely watched 15 blue whales, 12 humpback whales, 10 long-beaked common dolphins and cruised by 14 ocean sunfish (Mola mola). As you will read below, the numbers do not tell the whole story. It was a warm, bright and sunny day with very light swells and winds…ideal for wildlife … Read More

16 blue whales, 7 humpback whales, 18 Dall’s porpoise and 500 long-beaked common dolphins

Bob Perryblue whales, common dolphins, Condor Express, Dall's Porpoise, humpback whale mother and calf, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Cruz Island, Santa Rosa Island

A high-speed Dall's porpoise.

2017 06-08 SB Channel Hold on to your binoculars, ladies and gentlemen.  16 blue whales, 7 humpback whales, 18 Dall’s porpoise and 500 long-beaked common dolphins were seen without the need of magnification today.  We are in the midst of a very hot time for whales and dolphins and each day unfolds new secrets. The day got started when the … Read More

We hit the jackpot

Bob Perrybottlenose dophins, Condor Express, gray whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Pacific white-sided dolphins

2017 03-18 SB Channel Hooray!  The fog monster that hit us a few times lately was not a problem today…conditions were excellent.  Captain Dave took the Condor Express along the coast of Santa Barbara and we hit the jackpot with whales and some different dolphin species. Among the 14 gray whales sighted today, two groups were very active and several … Read More

4 Gray Whales and more

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, gray whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Painted Cave Santa Cruz Island, Santa Barbara Channel, Santa Cruz Island, sea lion

Friendly gray whale today. One of 4 sighted.

2016 12-30 SB Channel The rain waited until we were back at the dock, but the rain cloud formations over the Santa Barbara Channel were spectacular.  The ocean surface was a tiny bit choppy leaving Santa Barbara Harbor but soon glassed-off completely.  Visibilities were great both topside and underwater.  You could see all 4 islands in the chain, and the … Read More

Mesmerizing Mammal Diversity today

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, Dall's Porpoise, gray whales, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Barbara Channel, Santa Cruz Island, sea lion

Southbound gray whales today. (photo from my Condor Express archives)

2018 12-22 SB Channel It was so drop-dead gorgeous in the Channel today that you could see all 5 islands in the Sanctuary. Seas were calm but a very big swell with a long-period rolled from the west…nobody noticed until we did our Island tour.  There was a mesmerizing mammal diversity today:  19 Dall’s porpoise, 2 gray whales, 3 humpback whales, 750 long-beaked … Read More

Sunfish in the fog and more.

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish)

Ocean sunfish, Mola mola. (From my Condor Express archives)

2016 12-11 SB Channel Captain Eric and his crew encountered overcast skies with calm seas. There were patches of dense fog to deal with as well.  But fog did not deter us from great sightings. Total sightings for the trip include 4 humpback whales, 500 long-beaked common dolphins, scattered groups of California sea lions and one sunfish in the fog (Mola mola). … Read More

School of Mola mola and more

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, humpback whale, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Barbara Channel, sea lion

Mola mola (From my Condor Express archives)

Captain Dave and the Team took a new route today and ran to the eastern Santa Barbara Channel on flat glass calm seas. Sightings for the day included 1 humpback whale, 3000 long-beaked common dolphins, 150 California sea lions and 14 Mola mola. Along our path to the east our first wildlife encounter was with a single humpback whale. At … Read More

Sea lions in the kelp

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Painted Cave Santa Cruz Island, Santa Barbara Channel, Santa Cruz Island, sea lion

Sea lions in the kelp. This paddy was also surrounded by many hundreds of active sea lions.

The heat wave began to break today and this created perfection in the Santa Barbara Channel.  It was mill pond glassy smooth, except where the dolphins and/or sea lions got the surface roiled up.  It was “short sleeve weather” with not much wave action until we were on the far western leg of our excursion.  Sightings today were excellent.  For … Read More

Sunfish and lots of cetaceans

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, humpback whales, Mola mola, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Barbara Channel

Ocean sunfish (from my Condor Express archives)

Thursday, September 15, 2016 – Another day with Fall classic weather and sea conditions:  sunny all day with a flat, calm ocean.  Sightings today included 7 humpback whales, 2,000 long-beaked common dolphins and 2 ocean sunfish (Mola mola).  Captain Dave and his crew set out on a southerly course and found so much friendly marine life they never went past … Read More

Whales were near the islands

Bob Perrycommon dolphins, Condor Express, humpback whales, Mola mola (ocean sunfish), Santa Barbara Channel, Santa Cruz Island, Santa Rosa Island

Whales were near the islands today, like this humpback whales.

Thursday, September 8, 2016 –  Gorgeous sea conditions and loads of marine life including 6 humpback whales, 1,500 long-beaked common dolphins, and a mob of at least 250 California sea lions.  Whales were near the islands today. Things began to heat up about a mile north of The Cave.  Here loads of dolphins came to the Condor Express, and that … Read More