2021 11-24 SB Channel
Although there were some Santa Ana winds to the southeast of us, the weather in the Channel was spectacular today. No wind. Bright sun. Glassy seas. Sightings were good as well: 4 humpback whales, 3000 long-baked common dolphins and 200 California sea lions. The crew also removed 5 deflated, floating, Mylar helium balloons AND 1 empty plastic milk jug from the ocean surface.
Our first mammal encounter was with scattered small groups of dolphins about 5 miles offshore from Hope Ranch. They moved west and we followed them. The further west we got, the larger the pods became. Soon we were south of UCSB and hundreds of seabirds and more dolphins started working on a hot spot full of surface-active northern anchovies. Finally, 2 humpback whales were also attracted to this hot spot and appeared to be a mother with her calf. We had good looks.
Splashing and spouts to the south attracted the Condor Express to an area with two additional single whales. The area was a giant bait ball zone with more birds and hundreds of sea lions joining the dolphins and whales for sub-surface feeding. It was phenomenal and enhanced by the great sea conditions and bright sun.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express, and CondorExpressPhotos.com