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7+ humpbacks and lots of dolphins

Image: A mother humpback whale with her calf.

2024 05-17 SB Channel

Captain Dave and the crew took the Condor Express across the entire channel ending up south of the lanes and near the eastern end of beautiful Santa Rosa Island. Seas were common smooth. The sky was overcast, but later in the day a few bright “sucker holes“ let the sunshine down to the ocean. Sightings for the day included 7+ humpback whales and 1000 common dolphins.

The first group of dolphins located the Condor Express about 3 miles from the harbor. It was a spread out group that had little pods of 15 or 20 maximum. They were boat friendly, and everyone had great looks.  Next, we found more common dolphins and our first humpback mother – calf pair when we were north of the lanes, and just east of the buoy. (see today’s photo for an example) The little calf was pretty active: rubbing up against mom, rolling around, and swimming upside down. Some of this may have been solicitation of nursing.

After about 2 miles of running west we saw a lot  more spouts. We had time to watch about five of these whales, but there were many more in the area. We didn’t stop on a single humpback whale because it came to the surface after we had just passed it.  Next, we came up on another calf pair that had only one surface interval before disappearing into the deep. Finally we watched a pair of large adult humpback whales that were very boat friendly. They came along both sides and passed under the boat a couple of times. Small groups of dolphins kept coming .

You never know what Mother Nature has in store. 

Bob Perry 

Condor Express, and 

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