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Birdnados everywhere. Humpbacks, dolphins and a gray whale were also watched.

Image: A birdnado, aka oceanic hot spot.


2024 02-28 SB Channel


Two trips left the docks today: 9a and 12n. Conditions were superb once again with blue skies, calm seas and wisps of wind across the surface. Total sightings for the day included: 3500 long-beaked common dolphins, 1 gray whale and 2 humpback whales. At least 24 birdnados were also going off around the zone. (See today’s photo for an example).


A run west towards Goleta encountered about 30 dolphins on the morning cruise. Nearby, at Platform Holly, at least 1500 more were actively feeding with lots and lots of birdnados. (Birdnado is the word of the day!). After quality playtime with the dolphins, Captain Dave turned back east on a slightly offshore track. Past the Kelp Farm and then over to Platform C, you guessed it, more birdnados. Nearby, we watched a single northbound gray whale and easily tracked it under the crystal clear, Santa Barbara cobalt blue, water. A fast look at a lone humpback took place, but we were already late heading back to the dock.


On the noon excursion, Dave headed southeast to the Platform C area, where multiple birdnados were going off right next to the rig. An additional 2000 dolphins, in scattered groups, were feeding here and a semi-breach/big chin-slap brought our attention to a humpback whale.


Dave pointed out a few features and facts about oil drilling in the Channel.



Bob Perry,

Condor Express and 


"Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off- then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can." -- H.M. 1851

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