04-24-2014: More Orcas, Lively Humpbacks, Beautiful Conditions

Moss Landing Killer Whales

We came across a pod of orcas about 4 miles outside of Moss Landing. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 02-24-2014.

After a couple of rough days on The Bay, we got back into the swing of things with orcas, pacific white-sided dolphins, a black-footed albatross and happy humpbacks.

We came across these orcas early in the trip. But they were on the hunt and staying under; moving far in all directions. That made it hard to track them. So we decided to leave them and head offshore where we thought the humpbacks had moved out to. We found them about 13 miles out.

Monterey Bay Breaching Humpback Whale

I love when they breach. I think it’s the most spectacular thing we see out here. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 04-24-2014.

Right when we were getting on the scene, this humpback launched about 30 yards from the boat.

Monterey Bay Humpback Whale

This was one chronic pectoral fin slapper. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 04-24-2014.

This was the same whale that breached. This animal kept “peck slapping” almost the whole time we were there. It appeared to be slapping the two other whales in the group. Not violently, more of firm pat. Very peculiar.

Monterey Bay Humpback Whales

Here are a couple of humpback whales engaged in a little pectoral fin joust. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 04-24-2014.

We had a good variety of behaviors today with these humpbacks.

Monterey Bay Humpback Whales

“Spy-hopping” Humpback Whale.Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com

Black-footed Albatross

We also had this unusually curious black-footed albatross fly up to the boat and float next to us. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 04-24-2014.


Black-footed Albatross

A closer look at the black-footed albatross. Note the “tube” at the upper end of the beak. This is used for converting salt water into fresh water. A natural desalinization system. Photo: Michael Sack, www.sanctuarycruises.com, 04-24-2014.



About Michael Sack

Boat Captain, Monterey Bay marine life naturalist and guide. Photographer and Videographer.
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