August 12th - A visit with humpbacks near Snake Island!

 Photo by Alanna Vivani

Photo by Alanna Vivani

 A couple of Pacific harbour seals hanging out in the intertidal zone. Photo by AlannaVivani

A couple of Pacific harbour seals hanging out in the intertidal zone. Photo by AlannaVivani

We have been getting spoiled with humpbacks the past week, just check out our blog posts from the previous days! On this day, we set out of the harbour with both boats and took a quick ride to Snake and Entrance Island to have a look at the harbour seals hauled out on the rocks. While enjoying the harbour seals we could see the blows from the humpbacks in the distance already. Those tall blows are unmistakeable and we weren't even able to pick up speed to head out because they were so close, lucky us! 

 A humpback whale surfaces near Snake Island. Photo by Alanna Vivani

A humpback whale surfaces near Snake Island. Photo by Alanna Vivani

 Dorsal fins help us to identify whales and become particularly helpful if the whale isn't fluking! Photo by Alanna Vivani

Dorsal fins help us to identify whales and become particularly helpful if the whale isn't fluking! Photo by Alanna Vivani

Once on scene with the humpbacks and with some help from other companies, we were able to figure out there were 2 adults and 1 calf to watch during the morning trip. This is not an uncommon sighting - newborn humpback calves will travel with their mothers during the migration to their feeding waters off the coast of British Columbia and Alaska. 

 Humpback whales have two blowholes and their exhales can can get 10-15ft high depending on the size of the whale. Photo by Alanna Vivani

Humpback whales have two blowholes and their exhales can can get 10-15ft high depending on the size of the whale. Photo by Alanna Vivani

Did you know humpback whales have one of the longest migration patterns in the world? They can travel as far as 16000 miles (almost 26000 km)! The mothers give birth to young in the waters around the equator during our wintering months. It's a safe environment for them to raise their calf and prepare it for the long migration to their feeding grounds in our water during the summer months. 

 An oyster catcher in flight! Photo by Alanna Vivani

An oyster catcher in flight! Photo by Alanna Vivani

 Many juvenile Double-crested cormorants taking a break on an old tree near Gabriola Island. Photo by Alanna Vivani

Many juvenile Double-crested cormorants taking a break on an old tree near Gabriola Island. Photo by Alanna Vivani

We were able to watch the pod of 3 in the morning engage in milling and logging. Logging describes the behaviour where the whale rests at the surface, looks similar to a log, without much forward movement. 

 A cormorant drying out its wings after a deep dive! Photo by Alanna Vivani

A cormorant drying out its wings after a deep dive! Photo by Alanna Vivani

In the afternoon, we caught up 2 humpbacks just a little farther northeast of where we were in the morning. Engaging in some more deep dives and logging. The waters were so nice and calm, so with each surface our guests could hear the loud and deep noise when a humpback blows. It was a little difficult to identify these whales - their flukes weren't coming out of the water each time. However, we could all tell that they would be under the "BCX" category, because when we did see the flukes, you could tell they were pretty well all black!

 A humpback whale flukes before going down for a deep dive. Photo by Rodrigo Menezes

A humpback whale flukes before going down for a deep dive. Photo by Rodrigo Menezes

 Fluke shot by Rodrigo Menezes

Fluke shot by Rodrigo Menezes

Enjoy some more photos below :) give us a call if you'd like to book on one of our boats for your own tour!

 Two humpbacks is double the fun! Photo by Alanna Vivani

Two humpbacks is double the fun! Photo by Alanna Vivani

 The intertidal zone is full of so much life! Look at all of these purple sea stars clinging to the rocks during low tide. Photo by Alanna Vivani

The intertidal zone is full of so much life! Look at all of these purple sea stars clinging to the rocks during low tide. Photo by Alanna Vivani

Jilann LechnerComment