MOTHER GRAY WHALE (LEFT) AND HER VERY YOUNG CALF (RIGHT) ARE AMONG SEVERAL SEEN YESTERDAY AND TODAY MARKING THE LAST PHASE OF THE GRAY WHALE MIGRATION FOR 2015…ONE MONTH TO GO !
2015 04-09 SB Coast
Captain Dave took the helm of the Condor Express and ran one excellent 2½ hour whale watch excursion today. And what an excursion it was ! First, there was just about zero wind and little to no swells of any kind. Second, it was a warm 72°F day and third, all the marine mammals were abundant along the Santa Barbara Coast. Hard to beat.
We left the dock at 12 noon and headed straight south to the outer Santa Barbara Harbor entrance buoy to look at the sea lions AND a pair of gray whales traversing the area. These two #whales were a mother and her calf and we traveled along at a safe distance as they migrated northbound where we broke off at the Lighthouse. Our attention was on three very friendly and huge coastal bottlenose dolphins. They rode the bow and came alongside the boat and entertained their fans with quite a nice visit. About that time, our eagle-eyed deck hand and second captain, Eric, spotted a mega pod with at least 1,000 long-beaked common dolphins. They, too, rode the bow and seemed to provide an endless stream of cetaceans along the sides and surfing the wake of the boat. We were going back to the beach zone to look for more gray whales when Eric did it again. This time he found a pod of about 30 Pacific white-sided #dolphins. These animals are just about exactly the same size as the common dolphins we saw earlier but don’t have much of a beak, have a strongly curved dorsal fin and, as the name implies, have striking white and black side coloration.
The trip ended with yet another gray whale mother and calf pair moving along the shoreline near the 1,000 Steps beach. What a day !
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express