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Lots of wild action.

2021 10-29 SB Channel

Skies were blue and sunny all day except for a brief patch of dense fog on the way out of the harbor. Light winds and small swells also set the stage for some of the best marine mammal watching of the season. Today we closely watched: 10+ humpback whales, 3000 long-beaked common dolphins and 500 California sea lions.

We made one, and only one, stop today at a massive feeding hot spot with more going on than just feeding. The action was south of the lanes near Santa Cruz Island. Luckily the whales were not IN the lanes as there was a lot of huge container ship traffic in both directions. All of the whales, dolphins, sea lions reported were at this one location along with plenty of sea birds, too.

Between the dolphin feeding action and the “activities” of the whales, the waters surrounding the Condor Express were white with foam. In addition to the 10 whales closely watched, we saw spouts and at least one breach in the near distance. There were a few closer humpback whale breaches too.

Three of the whales formed a competitive group and much of the aggressive chasing, rolling around, chin slapping and vocalization took place right next to our hulls. At one point a whale was seen completely wrapped in giant kelp. The chasing and so forth went on amidst active subsurface feeding by the rest of the mammals in the zone. It was a spectacular sighting with powerful observations.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express, and CondorExpressPhotos.com

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