In recent days we have been seeing all four species of whales that spend time in the Salish Sea. Minke whales and humpback whales are starting to arrive from their migrations, a group of “Sounder” gray whales are still here feeding prior to resuming their northward migration, and Bigg’s orcas have been roaming throughout the area.

On our trip from Edmonds, May 10, 2024 we even had a grand slam (four whale species in a single day)! We’ve had a few opportunities to watch orcas with the iconic Seattle skyline in the background and our captains are always trying to line up that postcard photo for the passengers whenever possible. The wandering T65A brothers Amir and Indy, and the T99 pod have been spending time together, and the T90 pod had a multi-day visit recently as well.

On May 11, 2024, our Edmonds guests witnessed Amir and Indy circle around two gray whales (crc-2259 and crc-2557) for about 15 minutes. The two gray whales started rolling around with each other when the orcas got really close. Amir and Indy eventually just moved on. Other whales we’ve seen lately include the humpback whales Split Fin and Smiley, the T124A pod, T46B pod, T49A pod, T19 and T19B, T125A and T128. (report from Naturalist Bart Rulon)

Our Port Angeles tours got underway on May 11, 2024 with a sighting of humpbacks Split Fin and Smiley!  On May 14, 2024, we cruised east in beautiful conditions to catch up with the T46B pod of orcas near Sequim Bay. While we watched, this family found and worked on catching a harbor seal, taking their time to teach the youngest members how to hunt. The post hunt celebration consisted of tail slaps, rolls and spyhops all around! Afterwards, we took a short ride over to Protection Island where we encountered many birds and harbor seals to round out the trip. A fantastic day in the Salish Sea! (report from Naturalist Rachel R.)