Aug 8 2018 – Transient Killer Whales and Humpback Whales were the highlight of today’s tour!
This morning we headed south west as we heard there were Transient Killer Whales in Juan de Fuca Strait west of Race Rocks. When we caught up to them we saw they were the T46 family. Led by the matriarch T46 this family has 5 members including two males with large dorsal fins. The matriarch, T46, was the last killer whale captured in the waters of the Salish Sea for sale to an aquarium but was released shortly after her capture. At 54 years of age she is now a great-grandmother. On the way back to Victoria we stopped at Race Rocks an ecological reserve with abundant marine life including Harbour Seals, California Sea Lions, Steller Sea Lions, Elephant Seals, a Sea Otter and a variety of birds including Bald Eagles. A great morning on the water.
In the afternoon we again headed south and soon saw the blow of a Humpback Whale. At 17 metres (55 ft) in length and weighing up to 40 tonnes Humpbacks are impressive whales. After watching this whale for awhile we headed further into Juan de Fuca Strait looking for more whales. We were rewarded by seeing another Humpback Whale called Frankenstein! Humpback whales can be identified by the markings on the underside of the tail and features of the dorsal fin and back. Some of the white marks along the side of Frankenstein’s tail look like stitches – like those on the original Frankenstein. After spending time with Frankenstein we moved on to Race Rocks to see the sea lions and seals hauled out on the rocks. All in all another fantastic day on the water with SpringTide!