Orca Playtime in The Patch today as four family pods returned excitedly for an afternoon of socialising and mingling. It was set to be an interesting day as we moved over the swell which helped to stretch out conditions and set a nice rhythm for the search ahead. Our first sighting was of a very relaxed Fur Seal who was enjoying a morning basking session as he soaked in the rays and drifted with the conditions. Shearwaters and Albatross soared as they covered ground efficiently but it wasn’t until the early afternoon the Orca made their return back to The Patch. Alki and her family including little Helen were sweeping their way down the swells and back in towards the foraging grounds as they came over to greet us happily. It was lovely to see them all again and watch as they travelled together, always great to see that symmetry in movement.
Further pods moved in as members of Cooee, Queen and Cookie’s pods all arrived together at once and they seemed almost as excited as we were to see them. It is always interesting to watch the late return back to The Patch as there is a real happiness amongst the Orca and it certainly has the feeling of a homely return for them. It was now playtime as they approached us first for a big greeting as they swam underneath and around the Steep Point using the swell to propel themselves towards us like torpedoes. New calf Poppy and mum Rosemary were having a wonderful time twisting and turning together as at one point they were rostrum to rostrum, an Orca kiss! Swirl joined in and it was a very social afternoon for them all including big boy El Notcho who joined in on the fun as over thirty Orca mingled around us happily. A very special way to complete a big day out as we enjoyed the late afternoon sun on our way back towards the Bremer Bay Boat Harbour.