2017 06-02 SB Channel
Our early blue whale season continues as a wonder-filled trip to Santa Rosa Island waters resulted in a fantastic list of marine mammal sightings. Eight blue whales, 50 offshore bottlenose dolphins and 15 long-beaked common dolphins were closely watched today. It was a day with patches of sun that occasionally broke through the fog and low clouds that are so typical for May and June in the Santa Barbara Channel.
Captain Eric and his crew took a southwesterly track and headed in the general direction of Santa Rosa Island today. Crossing The Lanes, at least 50 big offshore bottlenose dolphins found the Condor Express and rode wake waves. Frequent full-body airborne leaps were all around us. Eric counted at least 5 calves in the pod.
Continuing southwest, past the Lanes and about 3 miles away from Carrington Point, 8 giant blue whales were encountered. As usual, these beasts were feeding below the surface and, as per the previous few days, their dives were non-synchronous which meant at least one whale on the surface pretty much the whole time we were there. Most of these blue whales showed us their tail flukes on the terminal dives which always punctuated a semi-circular breathing/swimming cycle on the surface.
On the way home but still at least 10 miles from Santa Barbara, a small group of long-beaked common dolphins located us and played a bit. It is still a very early blue whale season for us and a wonder to behold.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express