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3 gray whales, 3 humpback whales, 5 Dall’s porpoise !

3 gray whales, 3 humpback whales, 5 Dall’s porpoise !

What a day!  Absolutely flat calm seas and HOT air temps due to the Santa Ana winds blowing down east of Ventura.  37 biology students from Malibu High joined numerous passengers from all over the world as the Condor Express ran two spectacular adventures today, one at 9am and the other at high noon.  On the morning adventure the CX ran far to the west to the far end of Elwood and the offshore cormorant breeding pilings.  Here we located a mother gray whale and her calf cruising pretty darned close to the beach.  At first they were hard to see as the ocean surface was a Beaufort Zero, but the crew of expert whale spotters and boat handlers quickly gave us all very good looks at the pair.  After a while we headed for deeper waters in search of other species of cetaceans.  Soon we found a small pod of those little black and white torpedoes, Dall’s porpoise!  The zipped and zoomed here and there and actually came over and rode the bow for a while.  What a thrill.   A third gray whale, an adult, was also found a few miles off the beach.

On the noon trip we patrolled the outer edge of the kelp forests to the west of Santa Barbara Harbor without luck.  So we, again, headed offshore.  But this time one of our close friends had reported a trio of humpback whales about 6 miles off the beach…and this fellow stands on the bluff all day counting gray whales.  Wow, what a set of eyes !  I am speaking of Michael Smith of course.  The trio of humpbacks stayed together the whole time we were with them.  They dove for about 3 or 4 minutes, then spent a long time on the surface logging.  After their brief siestas, the humpbacks fluked up and made their deep dives.  Great looks at the might tail flukes made the afternoon trip very special.

Tomorrow there is a 9am public whale watch trip, and perhaps a 3pm trip too.   Call the landing to check.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store! Bob Perry Condor Express

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