Sleepy humpbacks and three different species of animated dolphins

2022 09-09-SB Channel

Skies were sunny but had that hazy, humid, subtropical feel. Seas were calm and glassy all day, and the hot nearshore weather cooled nicely offshore. Sightings included: 2 humpback whales, 100 offshore bottlenose dolphins, 600 short-beaked common dolphins, and 1300 long-beaked common dolphins. Two floating, deflated, Mylar balloons were picked up.

During the first minutes of the trip, we watched a few small feeding groups of long-beaks foraging with hungry seabirds around them. Later, we’d see a mega pod.

East of the NOAA East Channel Buoy good fortune brought us to a big pod of animated offshore bottlenose dolphins. There were lots of calves in the group, and many of the dolphins were acrobatic. Soon thereafter, about a mile south, 2 large adult humpback whales were located and watched closely. Despite a week or more with all sorts of great humpback activities, today our adults were alternating between 5 minutes of surface logging and 3 minutes of “sinking below the surface,” i.e., not diving.

South of The Lanes a big pod of short-beaks found us and they were even more acrobatic and aerial than their larger bottlenose cousins. Loads of high-flying and tail-walking was observed.

On the way home, as previously mentioned, we had a 1000-animal pod of long-beaks near the boat. The pod stretched in a line for nearly ¾ mile.

You never know what Mother Nature has in store.

Bob Perry Condor Express, and CondorExpressPhotos.com

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