Fog. 2 very active whales. Thousands of dolphins.

Fogust 25, 2022 – SB Channel

Dense fog (again!) went to a high gray stratus layer, then dropped back down for more for. Luckily, near The Lanes, the blue started to show. A small swell with light winds prevailed. Sightings included: 2 humpback whales, 2500 long-beaked common dolphins and 1 ocean sunfish (Mola mola).

Very small groups of dolphins with 5 – 10 individuals located us a mile or two outside the harbor. The number of groups and their sizes were down a bit, at least from what we could find in the fog. Near the NOAA buoy, group sizes increased and, in The Lanes (where most of the action was today), there were a few actual pods. Sea birds were active within the pods, and a giant breach called us to a pair of whales that was located feeding subsurface there, too.

Of the pair, the first was large and the second was a medium-sized humpback with a deformed tail. From the tail, everyone knew this whale from sightings the past week or two. It was “Twitch.”

The larger whale was actively doing barrel rolls, and swimming the upside-down back stroke with two pectoral flippers often in the air simultaneously. The pair dove in synchrony, and dive times were short. Twitch apparently had a lot to say, and its trumpet and growling vocalizations were frequent.

As we departed the area for home, we found additional dolphins and an ocean sunfish (Mola mola). Captain Dave estimated the fish to be in the 1,000-pound range and at least 5-feet in diameter. It was loaded with external parasites.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.

Bob Perry Condor Express, and CondorExpressPhotos.com

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