the nature channel

I received a text from my friend, this morning, that there were whales in the area. To me, it was license to turn my chair to the window, pour another cup of coffee, and wait. Fortunately, it was pouring rain and no other work was likely to be attempted anyways. Two Orca showed up fairly quickly.

They were Biggs Orca, T49A1 and T49A2. A1 is referred to as Noah, who is twenty, and A2 is his sister Judy, who is fourteen. They were right in front of our house, but not too close at first. They appeared to be hunting, as they circled slowly, gradually getting closer and closer.

It should be mentioned again that we still have tons of sea lions around and they were likely what Noah and Judy had on their lunch menu. I stood on the deck with my phone set to Facebook Live, thinking if there was going to be a feeding frenzy, my friends would like to watch. It was, however, basically 18 minutes of ocean watching with 3 minutes of excitement.

As the whales got closer, I kept calling to the sea lions to get to safety. I really didn’t want to witness the killing. Circle of life, I know, but I don’t need to see it.

Suddenly the sea lions all started hitting up against the rocks on the cliff below us. The whales were pushing them, just like I have seen the sea lions themselves do to fish in the same spot. I was screaming at them to come toward us and scoot through the pass next to our house. The whales couldn’t follow them there. The video isn’t really worth showing you. Next time I will video the activity normally so I can edit it more easily.

In all the excitement, we spotted yet another Stellar sea lion with a marked number on its back. This one was X63. We were able to find him on the research data base. Do you remember when we talked about seeing X76 a couple of weeks ago? It turns out the two were marked on July 3rd 2000 on Sugar Loaf Island. Twenty-two years later the two boys are still travelling together and playing in the waters below my deck. The information I can find on their life expectancy indicates they are doing very well indeed to make it to twenty-two.

At the end of the event, the whales didn’t catch their lunch here today. I am actually kind of happy about that. It would have been disturbing to watch so close up, and how could I not watch if it happened right below us here on

the nature channel

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