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Into Whales and Sea Lions

With my recent move to Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada a new chapter in Marine Observation started in my later part of live - Orcas, Humpback Whales, Dolphins and Sea Lion photography.

To achieve the goal to take up-close images of Cetaceans (whales) I purchased a 16' Inflatable boat with a console and enough space to add gear and occasionally whale watchers. It makes it much easer to get up=close (within the leagal limits of non-scientist's distances) and observe the hunting and fishing behaviours of these transient and domestic cetaceans.

Located at the Southeastern part of Vancouver Island, I take my "KIPONA" Inflatable to Sansum Narrows and along the coast between Maple Bay and Campbell River for close encounters with these Marine Mammals. I was very lucky to observe the first visit of the J-pod in 2022 in the Sansum Narrows hunting for spring salmon.

One J-Pod Orca mother had a newly born (March 2022) baby along is side and tought the juvenile the skills of hunting and fishing effectively. The pod often returned to the Narrows and repeated the hunt throughout the spring and early summer.

While the pod was hunting some local anglers had a spectacular front seat view of the animals. The pod is well known to local whale watchers and researchers and in cooperation with these organizations inside information was shared frequently.

Orcas, dolphins, whales and sea lions face a dire problem with the intense marine traffic between Vancouver and the supply industry in the Pacific. Overfishing, ship noise and frequent collisions with ships the cetateans are extremely sound sensitive. They echo-locate each other, their preys and ships and their sensitive sound organs are noise-overwhelmed with the increasing amount of cargo-ships, cruise ships and commercial and recreational vessels around the island and inlets. Occasional stranding seem to be the result of such noises where whales are disoriented and misjudge the topography and tides and become stranded.

Now in 2023 I will take out my inflatable soon again and explore the wonderful world of the Emerald Seas around Vancouver Island. Stay tuned for more Blog posts and images as I take them along my exploration trips.

Photos copyright Beat J Korner ( 2022


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