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Whale Sighting Report  

In This Issue
Upcoming Events
Photo of the Day
Transients/Bigg's killer whales
Coastal orcas
Gray whales
White-sided dolphins
Find a wide range of books related to orcas at the Orca Network Amazon store.
Orca Network recommends:
The Lost Whale, by Michael Parfit and Suzanne Chisolm  
An intensely personal story...but this person is a young orca.  

Lost Whale book...ver scaled  

 To learn more about orcas: 

Orcas in Our Midst, volume 3, by Howard Garrett

Orcas in Our Midst,

Vol. 3: Residents and Transients, How Did That Happen?

Click here  

to order YOUR copy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~

The bestseller about orcas in captivity.

Death at SeaWorld, by David Kirby 

   DeathatSeaWorld


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orca Lolita/Tokitae,

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Tokitae looking up at us from her tank in Miami, FL in the late 1990s 

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March 29, 2014

We are watching and visiting the whales in their home~

Please observe, love and respect them from a distance.

Having trouble viewing this Sightings Report? Archived Reports can be found HERE.
Still no word of the whereabouts of Southern Resident orcas since March 4, when J pod headed west out the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Their absence from the Salish Sea is not surprising this time of year, especially with indications of a big run of spring Chinook now starting to mill at the mouth of the Columbia River before heading upriver.

Gray whales continue to be seen off Langley and in Saratoga Passage every day, blasting feeding pits in mudflats from Crescent Harbor to Possession Point. If anyone is able to take photos of those pits at low tide please send them in to Orca Network, with the date and location please.

Transients were reported off Trial Island today, and two large groups of Transient orcas, about 20 in all, were feasting and frolicking in Haro Strait and further north on the 27th. White-sided dolphins streaked around the San Juan Islands at the same time, as you'll see below in some fantastic photos and a hypnotic video of the graceful gliders.

Many thanks to the over 17,000 people who commented to NOAA, virtually all in support of including Lolita as a member of her family under the ESA. It's a safe bet she'll eventually be listed as a member of an endangered population, which will give her protections against mistreatment she doesn't have now. It's a big step toward her return to her home waters, although it will take another year at least, and this week it was announced that the Seaquarium will be sold in a few months to a company that owns over 70 theme parks, which may or may not complicate matters.

Correction from the last report, from Melisa Pinnow: I saw that you used a photo I put on Josh McInnes's wall for his birthday. That was a photo I took back in 2012 of T102, not of T030A, who I did not end up seeing this week, although I was close.
Photo of the Day
A tight group from among two large groups totaling approximately 20 Transients/Bigg's Whales spread over two miles.
Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.
Transients/Bigg's killer whales
March 29
I got a report of two transients 4 km off Trial Island near Victoria BC at 2:00PM.
Josh McInnes

March 27
The Salish Sea was sure alive today. The day started out with reports of 150 Pacific Whlte-Sided Dolphins in Haro Strait. We left the dock and headed for the dolphins when I got a call from a crab boat with a report of 4-5 Orcas. The crab boat captain is none other than our captain Lance Underwood who was working his other job. We decided to skip the dolphins and head for the orcas. By the time we got to the orca there were 10 animals with a very new calf. After watching them for a few minutes I started scanning for other Orcas and sure enough I saw many more blows about two miles from us. We had two large groups totalling approximately 20 animals spread over two miles.

After spending time with the first group I turned around and couldn't believe it, there were 30 Pacific White-Sided Dolphins following the mammal eating Killer Whales. They were very worked up and left the area very quickly after picking up the Orca.

The new calf is T065A5 and the believed mother is T065A who was born in 1986 and now has four offspring. We also got to see another new calf T049A4 who was first documented earlier this March. It so great to see the Bigg's Killer Whales and the Salish Sea thriving this spring! **Please note all of our images are cropped and taken with a telephoto lens**
Simon Pidcock
New calf T065A5 follows the believed mother, T065A.
Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Simon Pidcock, March 27, 2014.

March 27
6:08 pm - the Victoria Clipper encountered the T49A's this evening between Eastern Bank and Protection Island (Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca). They were headed straight toward the mouth of Admiralty Inlet/Point Wilson.
Justine Buckmaster
Photo by Justine Buckmaster, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Justine Buckmaster, March 27, 2014.

March 26
This morning at 10:40 a.m. while hiking in East Point park, I observed 2 transients off the east end of Tumbo Island (just north of East Point, Saturna Island), close to shore, heading west along the Georgia Strait side of Tumbo. I observed them for several minutes until they disappeared behind the land mass of Tumbo.
Robert Bruce

March 26
3.30pm - Orcas (not identified) from Cortes Island Ferry. Approx 5 Orcas seen from Quadra to Cortes Ferry, appeared to be feeding with a couple of breaches for a few minutes then headed north. Latitude - Longitude: 50.093274,-125.099945 Lat: 50 5' 35.7864" Long: -125 5' 59.802"
David Burrough
Coastal orcas
March 24
(1615) C. Ivors spotted 3 dorsals that may have been killer whales about 3-4 miles W Saunders Reef buoy five miles south of Pt. Arena, CA. Last seen heading out NW.
Same day (1854) D. Harley reports possible 2 dorsal fins hanging out north of Pt. Arena Lighthouse off Manchester State Beach, CA.
Naked Whale Research

March 23
Dan Zeik reports seeing 3 orcas, including a female and 2 juveniles, while crabbing about 6-7 miles offshore of Westport WA, at 46 46.6 x 124 12.5.

March 11
Dan Zeik reports seeing a total of four orcas, including 2 juveniles, while crabbing about 6-7 miles offshore of Westport WA, at 46 46.3 x 124 10.7.
Gray whales
March 29
12:40 pm - Jamie Grundhauser reports Gray whale #53 off Hat Island.

March 29
Max on the Mystic Sea reported a gray whale near Langley about 11:55 and another gray near Camano Head a little later.

March 28
Very happy to see Dubknuck #44 today, also Patch #49 and #383, and 2 more whales we couldn't ID because of the wind, waves AND rain! Near Langley (#44), Hat Island mid channel (#49) and Tulalip shores (#383).
Jill Hein
Gray whale #383 flukes up near Tulalip Shores.
Photo by Jill Hein, March 28, 2014.

March 28
10:30 am - Dick Snowberger reports seeing blows of gray whales from the Clinton ferry.

March 26
1 pm - Gray Whale feeding. Seaplane Base Crescent Harbor.
Phil Matthews

March 26
9:15 - Erin Lepage is watching one or two gray whales in Crescent Harbor, Oak Harbor, Whidbey Island.
White-sided dolphins
March 27
Pacific White-sided Dolphins bow-riding the Western Prince from above and under the water! Shot with two GoPro cameras, one mounted to the hull, another on an extension pole, this video was filmed on the Western Prince II in the San Juan Islands.
Chris Teren
Pacific White-sided Dolphins (Lags) On Western Prince
Pacific White-sided Dolphins (Lags) On Western Prince
Video by Chris Teren, March 27, 2014.

Eye contact from a dolphin is a dream come true. I could only wonder what these intelligent amazing creatures were thinking.
Photo by Mary Ann Rice, March 27, 2014.

Complete with "crispy" water. I love "crispy" water... -
Photo by Katie Jones, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Katie Jones, March 27, 2014.

March 27
Wow. Wow. WOW!!! Over 150 Pacific White-Sided Dolphins not only swam with our boat, but followed us through John's Pass!!! (between Stuart and John's islands, about 200m wide in spots). Flat, glassy water made taking pics and video super amazing! Pics and video shortly!!!
John Boyd

Coming up for air. A Pacific White-sided Dolphin just breaks the surface while exhaling. These marine mammals are voluntary breathers. They have to plan and think about every breath they take. Surfacing must be timed accordingly to be able to breathe out, and back in quickly before going back underwater.
Photo by Traci Walter, March 27, 2014.

Photo by Traci Walter, March 27, 2014.

ABOUT ORCA NETWORK  
Orca Network is a 501 c3 nonprofit organization, dedicated to raising awareness about the whales of the Pacific Northwest, and the importance of providing them healthy and safe habitats.

Orca Network's Whale Sighting Network involves citizens in helping researchers track the movement of whales, and encourages people to observe whales from their homes, businesses, ferries, and beaches.
Whale reports are sent in to our Sighting Network and emailed out to researchers, agencies, and citizens on our network, and posted on our website (MAP of sightings also on website). Whale reports and observations are sent in by a variety of sources, and Orca Network does not guarantee the accuracy of any report or whale identification.

 

TO REPORT WHALES, CALL: 1-866-ORCANET (1-866-672-2638), email info@orcanetwork.org, or post sightings on our Orca Network Facebook page.

 

*BE WHALE WISE! BOATERS - NEW FEDERAL REGULATIONS IN EFFECT AS OF MAY 16, 2011:

 "The new rules prohibit vessels from approaching any killer whale closer than 200 yards and forbid vessels from intercepting a whale or positioning the vessel in its path. This doubles the current approach distance of 100 yards. The rules go into effect May 16 and apply to all types of boats, including motor boats, sail boats and kayaks, in Washington"

 

For more information on the new Federal Regulations, visit the NOAA Fisheries website

 

 
To report harassment of whales in US waters
, call NOAA Enforcement: 1-800-853-1964;

In Canadian waters, call DFO's Observe Record and Report (ORR) Violations Hotline: 1-800- 465-4336

Report the boat name &/or a description of the boat, & get photos if at all possible.