Bremer Canyon Killer Whale on a superbly calm day in the Southern Ocean as we were surrounded by Killer Whales on our journey towards the Bremer Canyon. A peaceful morning guided us to the sighting grounds as the glassy conditions created mesmerising moments as Marine Sawdust (Trichodesmium) was dispersed by gentle rain drops. Arriving in The Patch we began to scan carefully for signs of life and shortly after arriving slinky dorsal fins surfaced alongside as the rainy haze surrounded us like a blanket. A unique moment to watch the eerie silhouette of the oceans apex predator slice through the silky conditions as the entire family pod surrounded our vessel and we moved as one to the East. The rain clouds began to lift and disperse as we could confirm the identity of two family pods traveling together, it was big Male Toddy and his family along with wonderful Queen (aka Split Tip) and her family pod joining forces in search of food. Gentle, relaxed and curious as they welcomed us into the pod and especially mature male Toddy who travelled closely with us for most of the day, such an impressive male. It was interesting to watch as he tried to approach younger male Wonks but only got within fifteen metres before older female Noosa cut him off, she wasn’t having any show of dominance from Toddy towards Wonks today.
It was wonderful to have John Totterdell (Toddy’s inspiration for his name) and his team completing their research today along with the support of Graeme Drew and his team with their families fishing vessel. It certainly takes a team effort to complete studies of the Orca and John has been studying not only the Bremer Bay population, but also the Orca found off Ningaloo and recently completed a trip with colleagues to study the elusive Type D Orca. The thousands of hours John and his team have spent in the Bremer Bay region and endless work with the Orca population here has provided us with the opportunity to better understand this special population as the education continues. The pattern of movement was consistent as the family travelled with focus to the East and seemed set to continue their pathway to the surrounds of the Bremer Canyon. A beautiful day with the best of both worlds as the gentle rainy haze cleared through and left behind warm sunshine for our return back towards the Bremer Bay Boat Harbour as we wished our Bremer Canyon Killer Whale well for their journey ahead.