April 4th-Whales & Chainsaw!

Steveston was greeted by a taste of the Vancouver summer with a day of calm waters and sunshine!
Spirits were high and excited for some whale watching action before we had even left the dock and this enthusiasm may have brought us some luck as we got some Bigg's Killer Whales right on our doorstep in the Strait of Georgia!


It only got better as out of the serene waters came an Orca celebrity...T063 "Chainsaw"! He was travelling very relaxed and calmly with his presumed mother T065 "Whidbey" and another family known as the T049As. We had spotted two family members of the T049As during our whale watching tour the previous day. Check it out here.

T063 "Chainsaw" is one of the most recognizable Orcas in these waters with his distinctive jagged dorsal fin. He is one of the oldest Bigg's males at the superior age of 45 (born 1978). He doesn't stay around the Salish Sea year round which makes this sighting all the more special!

"Chainsaw" & T049A1

He is also recognized further north and is known as "Zorro" around Southeast Alaska.

Seeing this celebrity was such a treat and it only got better with them sticking around giving  everyone a good glimpse and experience of viewing these magnificent creatures so close to home.

Our time limit with these amazing animals creeped up quicker than a sneaky Killer Whale and it was time to leave them to enjoy their relaxed evening. But as the saying goes; time flies when you're having fun!
The fun wasn't over for us though as we headed over to Samuel Island and Saturna Island and encountered a huge number of Stellar Sea Lions all huddled together snapping at each other for the best spot.

Sea Lions with snowy BC
Snoozing Stellar Sea Lions
Island views

They weren't disturbed by our presence as they were too busy soaking up the rays and snapping at each other for more room. They sure know how to make some noise!

Last wildlife sights before we headed back to Steveston included a gorgeous lone bald eagle and a flight of Cormorants also relaxing on the same little island as the Sea Lions. Cormorants can often be seen in the "wing-drying pose" like in the photo below. They do this to dry their plumage after time in the water. They can dive to great depths in order to catch some food and the Double-crested Cormorant (Pictured) is BC's largest Cormorant species.

Bald Eagle
Double-crested Cormorants

Thanks to all who joined Captain Scott and Naturalist Shauna ! All photos/videos were taken using a Canon EOS Rebel T3i with a telescopic lens and have been cropped.

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