2020 Encounters

Encounter #5 - Feb 17, 2020

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Enc Date: 17/02/20

Enc Seq: 1

Enc#: 05

Observ Begin: 02:05 PM

Observ End: 04:00 PM

Vessel: Orcinus

Staff: Dave Ellifrit

Pods: Transients

Location Descr: Plumper Sound

Start Latitude: 48 45.00

Start Longitude: 123 07.00

End Latitude: 48 49.50

End Longitude: 123 19.00


Jane Cogan called Dave to relay a report that “J2” had found transients in Boundary Pass. Dave grabbed his gear, headed to Snug Harbor, and left in the boat at 1335. The whales, who ended up being the T99s and T137s, had traveled to the lower entrance of Plumper Sound when Dave arrived on scene at 1405. The whales had been reported to have been doing a lot of milling and direction changes prior to arrival. About twenty minutes after Dave arrived the whales split into two groups with T99, T99C, T99D, T137, and T137B moving on ahead while T99B, T137A, and T137D stopped to attack a harbor seal. The whales made quick work of the seal and began fast traveling to catch up to the others who were over a mile to the west of them. T99B and T137D caught up to the others first while T137A traveled by himself. The other whales split up into three small groups, loosely spread with T137 and T99C traveling on the outside, T99B and T137D less than a hundred yards inshore and behind them, and T99, T99D, and T137B traveling together another couple of hundred yards closer to the Mayne Island shoreline. The groups got closer together and the whales began milling as they approached Navy Channel. They must have made another quick kill as gulls began diving to pick up scraps and the whales were acting like they were feeding. All eight whales then grouped up into a tight group and began moving quickly west in Navy Channel. The encounter ended at 1600 with the whales exiting Navy Channel on the Mayne Island side.

Photos taken under Federal Permits


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