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8 humpback whales and a lot more

2015 06-07 SB Channel

Captain Eric and the crew took the Condor Express far to the eastern Flats region today to find a large assemblage of whales and 800 long-beaked common dolphins.   Eric reported 7 humpback whales closely watched in this area, including a mother #whale with her calf, several breaches, some tail slaps and a few friendly approaches too. Conditions were excellent with calm seas, no wind, and the morning fog gave way to sunny skies. Two Minke whales also patrolled this region.

Later, near Henry, a second humpback whale, Scarlet, was found in travel mode with another pod of 200 or so #dolphins. All in all it was a great excursion today.

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

Update on that milky blue water we’ve been seeing the past few days.   On Friday, with the help of Sophie, Carolyn, Tasha and Captain Eric, I slowly towed a 20-micron phytoplankton net through the middle of a milky blue streak out near Platform Alpha.   Upon microscopic analysis, the sample was dominated by dinoflagellates, particularly the species Ceratium furca which is known to discolor the ocean red (not milky blue). The reports of coccoliths which cause blue water in subtropical seas were not confirmed in this sample. Perhaps the coccoliths decompose quickly or something.   The jury is still out until I learn more about it.   The plankton photos are online with Friday’s trip photography:

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