The MMT Blog / Orcas and Humpbacks and Otters, Oh My!
The 2015 cruise season is officially underway! Our first Gray Whale Watching Cruise of the season embarked on Saturday, March 28th, and we couldn’t have asked for a better day on the water. We had whale and wildlife sightings galore, and even got a spectacular viewing of a newborn orca calf.
The cruise got off to a great start with a viewing of a playful sea otter just a few minutes outside of the harbor. These adorable marine mammals are larger than most people think, growing up to 5 feet in length and weighing up to 100 pounds!
Four orca whales were spotted about 30 minutes into the tour. Orcas are social animals that tend to travel in groups, called pods. A large male orca, distinguished by its tall, straight dorsal fin, was spotted swimming with a smaller female orca, distinguished my its smaller, curved dorsal fin.
A few minutes later, another female orca appeared with a newborn calf, giving a lively spouting display as they swam through the waters of Resurrection Bay. Female orcas give birth in the winter or early spring about once every five years. Newborn calves are about 7-9 feet in length, and this calf appeared to be a little larger than that. This special sighting was undoubtedly the highlight of the cruise. The rest of the cruise flew by with wildlife sightings around every corner, including two humpback whales, Steller sea lions, and dozens of Dall’s porpoises.
The second cruise of the season on Sunday, March 29th, was also full of wildlife sightings, including several sea otters, a humpback whale, Steller sea lions, and another playful display by dozens of Dall’s porpoises.
Spring is here and Resurrection Bay is just teeming with wildlife! Resident pods of orcas can be seen cruising the calm waters of the bay. The humpbacks have returned to spend the summer in Alaska after wintering in the warm waters of Hawaii. Gray whales are on their way and we expect to see them soon as they cruise by the opening of the bay on their journey north. In May we will welcome the return of horned and tufted puffins.
Now it’s your turn to get out on the water and experience spring in Resurrection Bay! Gray whales are just one of the many incredible species that can be seen in the waters outside of Seward on our Gray Whale Watching Cruise. Call us at (907) 274-7300 or click here to book your spring cruise today!