Summer is in full swing in the San Juans! The sun is shining, the residents are back, and flocks of happy vacationers are enjoying our beautiful scenery and wildlife every day. This afternoon we left Roche Harbor to a 70 degree day with calm seas and a good report of resident killer whales just off of Pile Point on the southwest side of San Juan Island. There's no better way to start your Sunday afternoon!
We headed out of Roche Harbor and through Mosquito Pass to get to Haro Strait, the body of water that hugs the west side of the island. We continued southwards past Lime Kiln Lighthouse before we started seeing other whale watching vessels dotting the horizon. Once we reached their area, we were graced by an entire family of resident killer whales. We identified them as the L22s, led by their matriarch Marina and sporting a brand new calf, a young male who was born in September of last year. We slowly moved farther down island, leaving Marina and her family and spotting Calypso and her new calf, Windsong. Calves are often very playful, and love to practice new skills like tail slaps and breaches. Windsong was having an amazing day and breached over and over again during the period of time that we were watching him. We caught a quick glimpse of Calypso's brother Mega before we had to head back home, leaving Windsong as he was still breaching up a storm.
Naturalist Sarah C.