Encounter #26 - May 8, 2020
Enc Date: 08/05/20
Enc Seq: 1
Observ Begin: 11:40 AM
Observ End: 12:55 PM
Staff: Dave Ellifrit
Location Descr: Andrews and Mitchell Bays
Start Latitude: 48 31.31
Start Longitude: 123 10.09
End Latitude: 48 34.51
End Longitude: 123 11.32
Giles called Dave in the late morning to report that Jeanne Hyde was seeing 3-5 killer whales heading toward San Juan Island from the direction of Seabird Point. Dave grabbed his gear, headed to Snug Harbor, and left in the boat at 1130. 10 minutes later, Dave saw his first whale off Bellevue Point heading north. There was a young adult male in the lead and at least three other blows behind him still off Lime Kiln. The leader charged north and turned out to be T101B. Once Dave got his ID shot, he slowed down to a putt to wait for the others. While waiting, Dave was on the phone with Ken to report who the whales were when T101B suddenly surfaced right beside the boat and began riding the bow. Dave turned the boat off and T101B began milling in the area right off Bellevue Point. And then T101B came back to the boat and decided to hang out right beneath it again while he waited for the others. He surfaced once on either side of the boat but went back to hanging underneath it. This went on for about a minute before T101B shot off as T102 passed.
All the whales went on a long, long dive before coming up together off the County Park. All four of the T101s then headed slowly north in Andrews Bay in a tight group. They moved inshore a little off Sunset Point but pushed about a half mile offshore once they had passed Smugglers Cove. Dave ended the encounter at 1255 about a quarter mile south of Kellett Bluff with the T101s still heading slowly north in a tight group.
Photos taken under Federal Permits
NMFS PERMIT: 21238/ DFO SARA 388