Killer Whale training started within moments of arriving in The Patch as the calves played for over four hours straight during another remarkable day with the Orca of Bremer Bay. Upon arriving in The Patch we spotted small oil slicks as this had everyones tracking skills onboard in top gear as all eyes scanned carefully for the culprits of the oily breadcrumb trail. Lofty blows appeared quickly and we soon found ourselves amongst Queen and her family who were excitable and full of beans as they raced over towards the Steep Point. Greeting us with much enthusiasm they surrounded us as they wrestled, chased and breached while making sure we were part of the fun. The family has had many successful hunts of late and those are just the ones we have had the opportunity of observing and doesn’t include the meals enjoyed while we are away from The Patch or during the evenings. Overall they are healthy, happy and with so much food enjoyed consistently they have extra energy to burn which was clear to see and enjoy observing today.
Killer Whale training is a very important part of growth and development for these young calves as they perfect the skills they will need in years to come. Handling each other just like Beaked Whale they would lift, submerge and redirect whoever was playing Beaked Whale amongst the calves. Squeals of vocalisations could be heard especially between Samurai and Opal who always chat away during playtime and have the sweetest little voices. During all this commotion we noticed that Stormy was showing a little too much in all this excitement and could now confirm without a doubt that Stormy is a boy! Working with wild Orca means that we sometimes have to wait many years before an opportunity arises to confirm if a young calf is a boy or girl and today was that day for Stormy. Named after our onboard photographer and sister Stormy she was thrilled to finally confirm that her namesake is a handsome young boy after many years of wondering and watching Stormy for endless hours. It certainly makes us smile to see them so happy and playful reflecting their families health and having plenty of energy to burn in recreation and training.