Offshore bottlenose dolphins paid us a friendly visit today.

Delightful assemblage of cetaceans and calm seas

2019 08-12 SB Channel 

There were overcast skies but there was no serious fog around today. The sun came out as we got back to the harbor at the end of the trip. The good news: it was very calm and even glassy in spots. Total for the day include for humpback whales, 2000 long biked common dolphins, and 17 offshore bottlenose dolphins.

We spent the first half an hour following a mega pod of common dolphins. Soon thereafter, our first whale was spotted. It was a juvenile, and had a mostly all white tail. We were west of Habitat at the time. This whale made a very close approach, did repeated bubble blasts, msde a bubble line several times, a full body breach completely out of the water and followed that with a big 1/2-body chin slap.


A bit later we found more humpback whales. One of them did a bit of rolling around, exposed its pectoral fins, got a bit vocal, and was generally a very pleasant whale to watch. Then, as if somebody flipped a switch, the whale changed its behavior, and went slowly migrating off to the west.

As we moved around offshore, in search of more whales, we did encounter two different yet small pods of bottlenose dolphins. They were ambling along slowly on the surface, got very friendly with the boat, but there was no aerial activity for which this species is widely known.

On the long road back to the harbor, we ran into several very large pods of common dolphins. The first appeared to be a nursery pod: with every adult there was a calf.  In the second pod to come by there were no calves. We did spot an adult dolphin that had half of its dorsal fin sliced off… Very curious and uncommon.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.

Bob Perry
Condor Express, and
CondorExpressPhotos.com

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