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MUGGED, lunge-feeding and more

2022 10-13 SB Channel

Although there was a bit of sunshine in the city when we returned, the Channel had a high stratus layer all day. Seas ranged from mill pod glass to lightly rippled. Sightings did not tell the whole story, so please continue below. We watched: 4 humpback whales, 4000 long-beaked common dolphins and 200 California sea lions. The crew retrieved a large, deflated, floating, Mylar halloween-themed balloon from the ocean surface to protect marine animals. We left the dock at 10 am.

At 10:25 AM, and just 3 miles offshore, we spent some quality time with a small group of long-beaked common dolphins in super, mirror glassy water. There were a few calves in the group. About a half an hour later, the sharp eyes of deckhand Eddie located 2 humpback whales that were together at first, and then split up. They both had extremely long down times and we followed them for a while with only a few quick looks. One of the big events of the trip occurred at 1135am when a single humpback whale suddenly took an interest in the boat and mugged us for about an hour. It was an equal opportunity whale, spending time on the port side, the starboard side, and the bow, so all of its fans would have great looks. The only drawback to this marvelous encounter was that the whale never showed its tail flukes. Thus, no one can identify the individual by name. A little while later we encountered a string of five huge hotspots. There were thousands of common dolphins, countless brown pelicans, sooty shearwaters, elegant turns, a few gulls, and a few cormorants. Sure enough, all this activity eventually attracted the attention of one hungry humpback whale. It went about methodically picking out one of the several hotspots and did a series of surface lunges for all to see. On the way home: more dolphins.

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

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