Captain’s Blog

Victoria Whale Watching Report: Mouflon Sheep, A Minke Whale and a Daring Bald Eagle!

October 11, 2019


We were enjoying the blue skies and sunshine this morning as we moved east of Victoria into Haro Strait. We then turned north to check out who might be swimming amongst the Gulf and San Juan Islands.

We made a quick stop at Mandarte Island to see the bird sanctuary where cormorants build their nests on the sheer cliff surface.

We continued on towards Speiden Island which is a privately owned island of the San Juan Island Chain in Washington State. The island was developed into a big game hunting reserve in the 1970s and 1980s, but the venture was short-lived due to concerns over bullets being fired towards other islands that are more densely inhabited and because of environmental concerns.

Species from around the world were brought to the island for the big game reserve including Mouflon Sheep from Corsica, Sika Deer from Asia, and Fallow Deer from Europe.  They also brought over 2000 different bird species to the island. We were able to see many of the Mouflon Sheep and Fallow Deer on this morning’s tour.

On the tip of Spieden Island called Green Point, we found about a dozen giant Steller Sea Lions, who all seemed to be scratching an itch!

These big boys reach 2500 pounds and are prevalent in the area for about 10 months of the year.  A little further ahead is where the whale watching started!  We spotted the very curved dorsal fin of a minke whale!

Minke whales are often hard to track and can do very long dives, but we got to experience seeing this minke many times!  He or she was foraging on bait balls in a shallow area between two islands.  Even the birds were enjoying the bounty and made it easy to guess whee the minke would come up next!

While watching for the minke to blast through the surface at the bait ball, a huge Bald Eagle dove down and grabbed fish out of the water with its powerful talons!

It was amazing to see the eagle maneuver over the water and then into the sky!

He or she really made the seagulls look small when they were flying side-by-side! It was an amazing tour with animals from the land, sea, and sky impressing us with their size, skill, and presence.




aboriginal peopleAboriginal People BCalbino orcaaquariumsbald eaglesBamfieldBC west coastBC whale watchingbe a touristbear watchingbehaviourbigg's killer whalesblack bearBlackberryBlackfishbreedingBritish Columbia Whale Watchingcalifornia sea lionscalvescanada daycaptain mickcaptivitycareerscoast salishCorey VinkCorkycruise adventuresCruiser TourCruiser whale watching toursDall's porpoiseDawn Brancheaudealsdivingdolphinsecholocationelephant sealsfalse killer whaleFamous Killer Whalesfamous orcafeedingfeeding & foragingfirst nationsfirst whale watchingfood chainGlobal Ghost Geargrannygray whalegreat white sharksgrey whaleHarbour AirHarbour porpoisehuman encounters with killer whaleshumans and orcashumpback whalehumpback whalesIkaikiinteresting sh!*InvisibiliaJ PodJ-2J-Pod namesJ-Pod resident orcasJim DarlingK PodKasatkakiller whale factskiller whale vs great white sharkskiller whaleskiller whales huntingkiller whales in the wildL Podl pod orcaslpod orcasLuna the Whalelunge feedingMickMick Millermigration patternsminke whalenatural habitatnaturalistNootka SoundNorthern Elephant Sealnorwegian cruise lineoldest killer whale on earthOrcaOrca Adventuresorca attacks sharkorca communicationorca encountersorca familiesorca feeding habitsorca historyorca kayak videoorca languageorca lessonsOrca photographyOrca SpiritOrca Spirit Naturalistsorca whaleorca whale encountersOrca whale fightOrca Whale Toursorca whalesorcasorcas and humansorcas and peopleorcas in captivityorcas in whytecliff parkorcas of j-podPacific Salmon Press releasePorpoises Vs. Dolphinsport renfrewrace rocksrace rocks ecological reserveRace Rocks LighthouseRachael Merrettresident j-pod orcasresident orcasResident orcas of J-Podresident whalesresidentsresidents orcassalmonscholarshipsea ottersea otterssealionsealsSeaWorldSeaworld OrlandoSeaworld San DiegoSheenah DuclosSightingssouthern resident killer whalesSpringerstaff profilesstellar sea lionssteller sea lionsSummer Whale Watching VictoriasuperpodTaylor ChapdelaineTilikumTillikumtransient orcastransientsTumboUlises Killer WhaleUniversity of AlbertaVacation IdeasVancouverVictoriaVictoria Whale WatchingVictoria whale whatchingWest Coastwest vancouverwhalewhale evolutionWhale Watcher's ScholarshipWhale Watchers Scholarship 2018 Contestwhale watchingwhale watching experienceWhale Watching VancouverWhale Watching Victoriawhaleswhytecliff parkwild renfrewworld's oldest orcaZodiac TourZodiac ToursZodiac whale watching tours
Show more tags

Leaders in responsible Eco-Tourism

Close Menu Book Tour