The Condor Express headed south across the Santa Barbara Channel and a good variety of species. The first stop cam when two very large blue whales surfaced near the boat. One of the two was huge. Both had short down, and long up, times. The big one fluked up a few times and it proved that it was the same whale we saw last week as signified by a two-tone tail fluke, dark on the trailing edge and white towards the body.
Not long after the blue whale duo Dave located the small, speckled humpback whale that is another one that has been working our area for a few weeks. During the humpback encounter a big Minke whale surface near the boat and gave us a couple of looks. Also we had a 3rd blue whale come up near the boat before it started circling around. Next stop was a tour of the northern sea cliffs and world-famous Painted Cave of Santa Cruz Island.
After exiting the Cave, Dave took a northwesterly course to the mainland hoping to pass through fresh territory. Soon we re-sighted the first two blue whale, and after that, two more blue whales. North of the lanes there was a group of about 50 Pacific white-sided dolphins, a species we have not seen for a month or so, and closer to the mainland a herd of 500+ long-beaked common dolphins came over and greeted the Condor.
Totals for the trip included 4 blue whales, 1 humpback whale, 1 Minke whale, 50 Lags and 500 long-beaked common dolphins. A good variety of species was seen today.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express