Hello Adventure Travel Folks!! At Discovery Kayaking Ltd. we are optimistic that we will be sharing waters with a sperm whale when we sea kayak this summer. During the past few days, a special whale has shown up in the waters around our base camp in Johnstone Strait. It creates more to see on your kayak vacations.The occurrence is special! Not just because the sperm whale returned this morning but because of all the great effort made by several people to document this event. It started around 7 am this morning when local researchers began a recording of the clicks off Robson Bight Ecological Reserve. An hour and a half later, the sounds we echoing to the CP hydrophone so pretty sure the whale was westbound. Researcher headed out to find and confirm that it is a sperm whale. Orcalab monitored the hydrophones and cameras from Alert Bay. Researchers put a hydrophone in the water off CP (one of favourite sea kayaking areas) and could hear clicks. But the sperm whale proved elusive and no one could locate him. Researchers then decided to head east and made it to a familiar Creek around noon. Still, no luck but, in the meantime, another researcher (who was also on the lookout in case the whale went through the passes) spotted southbound Orcas heading towards Weynton Pass and mentioned that there were calls on the Blackfish Sound hydrophone before the whale disappeared into the distance. Researched turned back to the west. At 12:36 pm we could see blows to the west on the CP camera and at 12:42 pm Jared texted that they had found both the orcas and the sperm whale off Blinkhorn.
Around 1 pm, the clicks became quite frequent and sometimes loud despite the distance. Researchers stayed with the sperm whale and got videos and pictures. Then at 12:48 pm he went off to identify most of the orcas – T137s who were continuing east. An hour later, leaving the orcas were seen off the VI shore. Researchers went back to the west to try to locate the sperm whale. As the clicks continued they found him/her just before 2 pm.
At 2:18 pm the whale fluked off of the Wastell Islands. By 3 pm, the sperm whale was headed east mid-strait off Hanson Island. The clicks continued and so Researchers asked to be informed when the clicks stopped for 3+ minutes when he might expect the whale to surface again. Right on cue, the sperm whale surfaced at 3:27 pm. We took a screen recording of the blows (which you can see here) until the whale fluked and dove out of sight. We have not seen him/her again but there is some daylight left. It was an intense but satisfying day (and maybe not over yet!)
Day Two in the special visit from a sperm whale!
We’re hoping that our adventure trips are going to have the chance of providing sea kayaking opportunities to see this whale. After yesterdays confirmation of a sperm whale traveling in the waters of Johnstone Strait, I knew that folks would find some way of honoring this event. The sperm whale traveled in the core areas we kayak within during the summer. As other with whales we have observed over the many summers, this sperm whale traveled the usual route that most whales travel during the summers. It was only a day that this whale has been sighted but it is the first sperm whale to enter the waters of the North Island in a long time. Your kayak vacations could be one that sees this sperm whale.
Here is today”s Sperm Whale! Distant but wonderfully there. This whale has been named “Yukusam” on a researchers suggestion and agreed upon by local First Nations’ folk. Yukusam was seen by researcher traveling off Hanson Island and as Hanson Island is known to the local First Nations as “Yukusam,” the name seemed appropriate to honor him and this location. He is such a special visitor to the area. Yukusam has not left the area, almost a week and counting, and fortunately, the OrcaLab remote hydrophones are very helpful to understand his presence and even location. But as Yukusam likes to make long dives finding him on the remote cameras is really difficult but not impossible. Today was proof. We were able to alert researchers so that they could continue observing Yukusam more closely. And by watching the Explore.org cameras @ https://explore.org/livecams
and listening to www.orca-live.net everyone else (you!) can follow our collective efforts! This event has enriched travel tours to the area and added another dimension to our travel packages.