2018 08-18 SB Channel
Superior weather and sea conditions made it ideal for locating and watching wildlife in the Santa Barbara Channel today. This resulted in 3 humpback whales, 1000 long-beaked common dolphins, and 1 ocean sunfish (Mola mola) being closely observed.
There were two prime activity zones or hotspots today. One was located 7 miles north of the world-famous Painted Cave. Here, in a zone surrounded by pod after pod of dolphins, two separate whales were monitored. Each of the whales today followed a similar pattern to what has been their habit this week. Dolphins are quick to find, attack, and “ball-up” schools of bait fish. The humpbacks follow the quicker dolphins and make a pass or two through the bait engulfing most of the fish. The dolphins then swim on to the next aggregation of bait.
The second activity zone was about 5 miles west of the first. On our way, a single large Mola mola or ocean sunfish was watched. Whale watchers also had a rare and close-up look at a container cargo ship which was travelling in The Lanes at 20 knots. A third whale was located in this area and everyone had great looks.
You never know what Mother Nature has in store. Bob Perry Condor Express, and CondorExpressPhotos.com