Orcinus Orca is the scientific name for the oceans apex predator, the Killer Whale and we were surrounded today with Orca all around. Overcast conditions and a cool breeze were set to disappear later on in the day as we made our way towards The Patch. It was busy early as we passed over the continental shelf and a cloud of birds could be sighted just ahead, the Orca were in town. It was Blade and his family pod surfacing together as the two cheeky calves Cubs and Cubby raced towards our bow. They zoomed past in record time, little flukes flashing black and white as they powered back towards the family. It was lovely to see the teamwork of each individual as they worked together and it was successful for them as a large plume of squid ink and oil slick formed right alongside us, a fresh kill had been made and the family shared the spoils.
Three tall dorsal fins broke the surface and we were excited to see much loved and well known males Chalky, B-Slice and Hookfin hanging out together. B-Slice was following Chalky around like a shadow with both massive males surfacing right on our stern before moving around and past our bow. It was incredible to see the power of these big boys and watch the social interaction amongst them all. Meanwhile, the girls were relaxing with Queen (aka Split Tip), Noosa, Flapper and Stormy coming over to say hello. Young male Adina was also swimming closely with the girls and it was great to see them all taking a few minutes for resting. Our final surprise was to have Cookie’s pod surface right on our bow as this well known family marched their way back into The Patch, we could almost hear big male El Notcho calling out to the others that he was back home and who had been eating all of his squid!