FALSE KILLER WHALES!!!!

While we saw a few of the expected northbound gray whales today (two in the morning, two in the afternoon), the toothed whales commanded the trips today.

In the morning we saw six Pacific white-sided dolphins, four inshore bottlenose dolphins, and a very entertaining 600 common dolphins!

In the afternoon, we saw some jumping in the distance, not unlike the display we saw in the morning with our common dolphins. When we looked in the binoculars, however, it was clear that we had something much less “common” – a pod of 40 False Killer Whales! False killer whales are members of the dolphin family with a stunningingly dark coloration and complex social structure. These large dolphins measure 15-20 feet long and can weigh between 2,000 and 4,000 pounds. Sightings of this species are few and far between, with just a handful of sightings off of San Diego in the last 40 years. We found them very close to shore within minutes of starting our trip, so we were able to devote quite a while to observing these magnificent animals. We even got to see them make a kill – a HUGE white sea bass that one proudy showed off to our passengers by approaching the vessel with the catch.

The Privateer saw this species for the first time on February 16th of this year, but this was a first for me, and I can’t imagine spending this special day with a better set of passengers or crew! Glad you could all join us to make a little bit of history! We took lots of pictures and video that we’ll be sending to researchers to help learn more about these mysterious cetaceans.

Will they stick around? Who knows. Only one way to find out… Come join us!

Erin

 

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