Although we sighted killer whales on all 6 of our tours this week, the highlight for us was welcoming the humpback whale known as “Big Mama” back to the Salish Sea! We had a wonderful encounter with her on Friday’s tour.
Humpbacks were absent from our waters because of the whaling industry that decimated their local populations in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. That is, until 1997 when Big Mama wandered down the Strait of Juan de Fuca and into the Salish Sea, and was sighted by a local researcher, south of Victoria. Since then we have experienced a “humpback comeback” with over 800 individual humpback whales identified in the Salish Sea. Big Mama has brought back 7 different calves to the Salish Sea, thus earning her nickname. It was so amazing to get to hang out with this legendary whale!
Of course the killer whale encounters were awesome as well. We had visits this week from the brothers T125A and T128, the T124A family, and the T71B and T124D families. Both of Sunday’s tour in particular were highlighted by some pretty intense harbor seal hunts from these orcas.
The weather is looking great for Memorial Day Weekend! We’re excited to get back out there for another round of Salish Sea adventures!