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Pelagic bottlenose, commons, humpbacks and a Minke.

2019 09-14 SB Channel

Oh, what a fabulous day! Bright, warm sun…no wind…no swell…a perfect backdrop for great wildlife sightings. The day included wonderful looks at 25 offshore bottlenose dolphins, 1 Minke whale, 4 humpback whales and 2000+ long-beaked common dolphins.

Our first encounter was a wonderful view of a single Minke whale that crossed our bow, surfacing several times along the way. It appeared to be working the outer edges of a couple of large northern anchovy bait balls that were being decimated by at least 1000 common dolphins. The dolphin frenzy came right alongside our hull and times for great looks straight down at one of nature’s spectacles.

Thirty minutes later a group of 200 or so common dolphins located us. They rode our bow, side and stern waves. One larger animal in the pack let out a high-pitched squeak every time it spouted. I noticed the region around its blowhole was scarred, perhaps an Orca rake mark. Soon a scattered pod of 100 or so additional common dolphins also found us and there was a shy.

Around noon, we came across an area to the east with 3 more whales. A single, small whale was moving around the area, and two larger adult whales were migrating east towards a dolphin hotspot. The two interacted and socialized a bit along their path. Some rolling around, sideways diving, and vocalizing was observed.

Almost an hour later several small pods of offshore bottlenose dolphins came to the Condor Express to look us over and ride our waves. This was a particularly friendly pod and we had exceptional looks.

On the way home a very long line of at least 1000 additional common dolphins kept us company.

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

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