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Lunge-feeding, tail-throws, pec-slaps and more!

Image: A lunge-feeding humpback whale.

2023 6-06 SB Channel

There was a “June gloom” marine layer all day, but with zero wind the seas were calm. Sightings and behaviors were phenomenal. We closely watched: 10 humpback whales and 500 long-beaked common dolphins.

Most of the action today took place on a series of large northern anchovy hot spots west of Platform Holly. The first spot produced 5 hungry humpbacks that were actively lunge-feeding. We watched in awe for quite a while until some additional whale surface activity was observed nearby.

This action turned out to be a single humpback that was soon joined by 3 more. The first whale was discovered because it went on a tail-throwing binge and created all sorts of commotion. The trio joined in this tail-throwing and one of them went on a phenomenal breaching episode that consisted of at least 50 breaches interspersed with tail-throws, pectoral fin slaps and some rolling around. Yet another whale (our 10th in the area) came in and did some lunge feeding.

On the way home we watched a large pod of common dolphins.

The crew also removed 4 floating, deflated Mylar balloons from the ocean surface today.

You never know what mother nature has in store.

Bob Perry

Condor Express, and

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