Yesterday we got word from Tim (The Whale Centre) and Jeffrey Tom (Jamie’s) that there were Killer Whales 4 miles off Lennard Light. John and I headed out on the Lil Salty to go out and see who the whales were. We got on scene and determined that the whales were in fact J pod. All whale watching companies made the call to stop watching the whales once they knew they were in fact SWKW.
We took a few photo of the whales to send to DFO and the Centre for Whale Research. John noticed a brand new calf with J31. We were both really excited to see the calf was very orange and still had fetal folds. We observed the new calf with J31 and J19.
We see J pod once a year, the last time we saw them was June 8th, 2018, they were also heading down the coast.
Here is some info on these Killer Whales from The Centre for Whale Research:
The Southern Resident Killer Whales (also called orcas/Orcinus orca) are a large extended family, or clan, comprised of three pods: J, K, and L pods. Within each pod, families form into sub-pods centered around older females, usually grandmothers or great-grandmothers. Both male and female offspring remain in close association with their mothers for life.
Each Southern Resident pod uses a distinctive dialect of calls (sounds) to communicate. Certain calls are shared between all three pods. The calls used by the Southern Resident community are unlike the calls used by any other community of killer whales. These calls can travel ten miles or more underwater.
From spring through fall, the Southern Resident killer whales are most often seen in the protected inshore waters of the Salish Sea. The Salish Sea includes the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Strait of Georgia, and Puget Sound, and all their connecting channels and adjoining waters, and the waters around and between the San Juan Islands in Washington State and the Gulf Islands in British Columbia.
Photos were taken with a permit and no guests were on board.
Photo Credit: John Forde and Jennifer Steven