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We took sail into the Salish Sea, keeping our eyes peeled for blows on the surface. Even among the waves, we quickly spotted a blow just 20 minutes south of Victoria Harbour. A lone humpback whale was feeding, showing off it’s tail flukes before making deep dives. We spent some time, watching as it came to the surface exhaling its large blows into the air and were able to identify it as an individual nicknamed “Scratchy”.

Scratchy the Humpback
Scratchy the Humpback Whale. Photo by Naturalist Gord. Image taken with zoom lens and heavily cropped.

Right as we were about to leave to see what else we could see, Scratchy seemed to decide it was time to leave as well. We started making our way in the direction of Race Rocks, only to have the humpback appear right along side. We motored along with our new travel companion nearly all the way to Race Rocks. We turned away from our escort to view the adorable seals and massive sea lions at the ecological reserve around the Race Rocks lighthouse.

Steller Sea Lions
Steller Sea Lions. Photo by Naturalist Gord. Image taken with zoom lens and heavily cropped.

As we turned back north to head back to Victoria, we were surprised to find our friend Scratchy waiting for us! We were escorted north for a while more before Scratchy finally seemed to get distracted with some food. We said our goodbyes, but were grateful to get to spend so much time with this awesome animal!

Scratchy the Humpback
Scratchy the Humpback made another appearance before we returned to the Harbour. We can identify the whale from the marking on its tail. Photo by Naturalist Emma.
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