Forget about dancing in the rain, today we saw breaching in the rain! Our morning began by punching 24 nautical miles out through the southern ocean to the hotspot. We don’t call it the hotspot for no reason and today was definitely no exception as we spent the whole expedition here! With rain sweeping through we were on the lookout for the orca and low and behold there was one… up in the air… as it had catapulted itself sky high as if to say “you found us”! This playful behaviour included tail slaps and cartwheels which continued on a few more times by other orca now apparent in the area.
The copious amounts of birds swirling above suggested a predation (hunt and kill) had occurred in the hours leading up to our arrival. As the swell pumped against the prevailing winds we were witness to multiple black dorsal fins surfacing through the white caps. They did not belong to the larger apex predators, Orca, but instead to the smaller just as feisty Pilot Whales! If you had of blinked you would have missed them pass under the stern and away just as quickly as they had approached.
The birds were now in excess and had broken into three main swirls each following their own pod of orca. The closest to our vessel was the ever-growing El Notcho with Cookie and her pod. A close pass down starboard side from the pod left our passengers wanting more! Luckily enough a few cheeky youngsters came back into view and swamped the boat! The turquoise colour of their white bellies through the deep blue ocean gave them away as they moved under and around our vessel! This concluded our time out in the canyon and a quick pass to Glasse Island on the way home was a welcome treat before stepping back onto dry, motionless land.