2021 Encounters

Encounter #14 - March 22, 2021
J19 and J58

J19 and J58

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J36

J36

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J51

J51

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J19

J19

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J31

J31

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J31 and J56

J31 and J56

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J26

J26

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J40

J40

Copyright © 2021 Center for Whale Research

J58_20201222JAZ_JF1 (5).jpg
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Photos taken under Federal Permits

NMFS PERMIT: 21238/ DFO SARA 388

EncDate: 22/03/21

EncSeq: 1

Enc#: 14

ObservBegin: 12:24 PM

ObservEnd: 03:33 PM

Vessel: Orcinus

Staff: Dave Ellifrit

Other Observers: Katie Jones

Pods: J

LocationDescr: Haro Strait

Start Latitude: 48 31.92

Start Longitude: 123 10.28

End Latitude: 48 33.41

End Longitude: 123 10.66

EncSummary:

Jane Cogan called Dave around 1000 to report that they were hearing J pod calls on the Lime Kiln hydrophone. After waiting a bit for confirmation that whales were heading for San Juan Island, Dave met Katie at Snug Harbor and left in the boat at 1210. As we neared Bellevue Point, we saw our first blows on the shoreline just north of Lime Kiln. We began the encounter at 1224 but we waited off Bellevue Pt. for the whales to continue north. Except they didn’t. In a tight group, the whales milled back and forth along a small section of shoreline between Lime Kiln and Bellevue Pt. Through binocs, and Katie taking dot shots with her longer lense, we could see that it was the J16s (minus J26) and the J19s together on the shoreline-despite a rising wind and a swell rolling out of the southwest. At about 1240, J16 and J42 split from the group and headed west. The others also eventually came offshore and milled a bit before heading back down island.

We decided to go around these whales and head down island to try and find some other whales. The water got sloppier the further down island we went but we found J26 by himself heading slowly up island off Edwards Point maybe a few hundred yards off the shoreline. Several hundred yards behind him we saw another whale we thought might be J45 but it disappeared before it could be photographed. Near Hannah Heights we saw a group of three animals that turned out to be the J31s and J40. They traveled slowly up island in sloppy seas. After getting shots of these three, we headed back north to find more whales and calmer seas. We eventually found those calmer seas and a small group of whales at least a mile off the County Park. This was J19, J36, J51, and J58 and they traveled slowly north in Andrews Bay. Another whale we figured was J41 was foraging by herself about a half mile up ahead. J36 and the rest of the J19s eventually split up some and began foraging in Andrews Bay too. We hung on the periphery well away from any whales and hoped other whales would come up from the south. No more whales seemed to be coming though so we finally ended the encounter at 1533 with the J19s and J36 being spread out off CWR.