June 27th - T65A's in the Strait of Georgia.. the baby is looking good!
On Wednesday we ventured into the Strait of Georgia and had a bumpy ride! It was a bit of a roller coaster as we made our way over the Coal docks on the mainland where a boat was already on scene with killer whales. One of our favourite mothers, T65A, was there with all her offspring skirting quickly through the waves.
Born in 1986, this mom has already had 6 calves! Five of these calves are surviving and have been seen all season throughout the Salish Sea. Her newest calf is at most a couple of months old!
The baby whale is always a crowd favourite, popping it's little head above the water right after mom does. It takes young whales a little while to figure out exactly where their blowhole is and how to breathe efficiently, so for the first few months they'll exaggerate the motion and we can all chuckle at the little head slams that T65A6 was performing.
T65As, the oldest offspring, is a young male who is going through his "sprouting" stage. Before their teenage years, young males are hard to differentiate between adult females because their fins are the same size. Now that T65A2 is 14 years old, his fin is noticeably taller than all of the other whales he travels with and in the next few years it will go through a grow spurt. Decades from now we hope to see this guy with a 6 foot tall dorsal fin!
Our afternoon trip to these whales proved to have much calmer seas as we met up with the whales again alongside Valdes Island. We were lucky enough to be the only boat with the whales as we watched the pod slowly travel along the shoreline and mill around Thrasher Rocks.
The tour was finished with a visit to our friendly neighbourhood sea lions on Entrance Island. They are always entertaining to watch!