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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

White splash

I was finishing up work on Bodega Head at the end of the day and a white splash offshore caught my eye.  I took my binoculars out of my backpack, and then when I saw what had caused the splash, I dropped my field notebook and scrambled to get my camera.  

Sadly, the animals were too far away for photographs, but it was still very exciting to see a small group of Orcas my first from shore in California!

It was hard to tell, but there were between 4-6 smaller animals (females or juveniles)...all actively swimming north towards Goat Rock and the Russian River area.

Then I glanced south and saw one very large dorsal fin — a male — separate from the rest of the group.

It was probably my imagination, but other animals seemed to be hugging the shoreline.

A group of California Sea Lions:



Two passing Gray Whales:



This is *not* an Orca from tonight, but instead one from Monterey, photographed from a boat.  I can't remember the exact year (it's from a scanned 35 mm slide), but it's probably from the early 2000s:


Although Orcas are rarely seen from shore in this area, keep your eyes open!  Conditions like today flat, calm, gray seas offer great viewing conditions.
 

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