We spent our days expedition lapping up the sunshine and the glorious sea conditions aboard our purpose built vessel the Alison-Maree. We explored the deep canyon systems, venturing into depths of over 2000 metres! On arrival to the hotspot we had orca beside us. It was the inquisitive bunch, Nibbles and co. Restful orca and one restless calf took us on a journey over the Bremer Sub-Basin (an area between the canyons and continental slope). For hours we watched as Little D, the two month old calf (born in early March 2021) swam beside her big brother Nibbles, unnecessarily coming high out of the water and flopping back in on her belly. This little tacker would have also fit right in behind the MUCH larger male orcas pectoral fin, using its slipstream and taking a break from swimming. Taking the term “under her brothers wing” literally.
PILOT WHALES AND JETSAM
Pilot whales were next, they were also sleeping! The small pod surfaced casually, their blows sounding like a raspberry, indicating their relaxed nature. In the midst of our encounter we found ourselves picking up some jetsam (discarded waste from vessels) for example a float and various plastic pieces. If we come across any loose trash we endeavour to pick it up and dispose of properly throughout our expeditions. The orca and other slippery ocean critters are no doubt thanking us for it!
A long nosed fur seal was next! Typically they are lolling about on the surface but this one different! She came straight for us. Spy hopping her way over. While figuring out what we were she was very playful, now on our bow wave, darting back and forth, seemingly enjoying the change in scenery.
HUMPBACK AND BLUES
As we headed back to shore we ventured along the coastline. The commanding cliff faces and blow holes are an incredible sight after ones been looking at the water all day. Here we found a lone Humpback Whale! This early migrator was waving its GINORMOUS pectoral flipper in the air. It soon dived and after further inspection it was pink, being covered in SEA LICE! This urges an unhealthy whale. Fingers crossed for a smooth sailing migration north.
Two big puffs of ocean air made their way skywards. Below the surface two blue figures glided along. BLUE WHALES! They looked incredible in the afternoon light, the greyhounds of the sea.
For us, it was a very happy Sunday! With less than a week now to go until the end of this season, our orcas are beginning to converge with the northern migration of Humpies and the seasonal migration of Blues. Once again, we are so incredibly lucky to witness such diversity and forever grateful for beautiful Bremer Bay.