More Tail Action from a Load of Humpback Whales
A CLOSE LOOK AT THE PROPELLER SCAR AND GLOBULAR NODULES WHICH HELP US IDENTIFY OUR FRIEND, THE HUMPBACK “SCARLET.” SCARLET DID A BIT OF VERTICAL LUNGE FEEDING TODAY.
2015 05-22 SB Channel
Captain Dave took the Condor Express to The Flats, which are east of the oil platforms and offshore a ways. On the way we found one small humpback whale with white pectoral fins north of platform Hogan. Continuing east it was not long before we saw the one large hot spot of the trip which contained thousands of sooty shearwaters, hundreds of brown pelicans, many species of gulls, California sea lions, at least 1,000 long-beaked common dolphins, and 3 humpback whales. One of the whales was our friend “Scarlet” who we’ve been watching for a few years now and is easy to spot due to her propeller scar with associated globular masses of tissue. Sounds gross, but she is a very nice whale to watch. Today she got into the hot spot and vertically lunged on an anchovy school with the baleen visible inside her giant mouth.
After leaving Scarlet to her dining, we headed for Santa Cruz Island with good intentions, but plans were soon thwarted by the increasing winds and chop. Turning back to the northeast edge of The Flats, Dave located more activity. This time it was at least 6 more humpback #whales and about 350 short-beaked common #dolphins. A pair of whales started carrying on with repeated massive tail lobs and tail throws, some rolling upside down and waving long pectoral flukes in the air. This show continued for quite a while and everyone was enthralled.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express
I’ll get today’s photographs online sometime on Sunday. CondorExpressPhotos.com