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A nice trip out into The Lanes and around The Buoy nets wonderful whale and dolphin looks.

Image: a pod of common dolphins very close to shore.

2023 09-05 SB Channel

A thin overcast sky cleared to mostly sunny as we crossed the mid-Channel area. There was not much wind or swell today. Sightings were aplenty: 3 humpback whales and 2000 long-beaked common dolphins.

Our first cetacean sighting took place almost immediately. A small pod of dolphins located us and took us east and back towards shore. (See today’s photo for an example). We only see common dolphin so close to the beach a few times a year.

The “real” action was an area ripe with both dolphins and humpbacks that was southeast a little bit from the NOAA East Channel Buoy. In this zone we closely watched 3 individual humpbacks, 2 juveniles and one adult. As has been so common this week, the whales seemed to be doing a lot of foraging beneath the surface and only spent a small amount of time up where we could see them. We hung out in the area and eventually put together some nice total time with each of the whales. This region was also very flush with dolphins.

On the way home, near mid-Channel and south of the oil platform line, we watched another group of dolphins.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.

Bob Perry

Condor Express, and

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