I was riding my bike downtown when a friend yelled out from his truck that a Orca pod had just gone through the harbour and more importantly was heading inside!

When they go on the inside inlets they are much easier to get shots of. On the outside after they sound, one never knows where they are going to surface but on the inside the passages are much more narrow and act like a cattle chute.

I hurried to get out in my boat! (which still took me over a hour) I had trouble finding them as no boats were tailing them by the time I arrived. I didn’t know If they had gone north into Fortune Channel or continued eastward down Tofino Inlet? I searched for about 3 hours but finally found them way down Tofino inlet past Barryman point. There were four of them! I immediately recognized them as the pod I had seen two weeks earlier! Almost right off the bat I saw three total breaches! I was lucky to get them! While I was consumed with getting the shots I didn’t notice that another pod of 5 had joined them. I was surrounded by them! They all seemed to be very happy! One of them came up behind me and vocalized! I’ve never heard a Orca speak before and was startled! I continued to hear many differently vocalizations! I wondered if they were upset with me being around them but soon realized that If they were they would not be hanging around and they would be avoiding me. They jumped out of the water,slapped their tails,rolled and talked loudly to each other!

I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing! I was with them over 2 hours and took 571 shots. I also took some video. I won’t be getting many more opportunities like this again!

I stayed with them right to sunset. I didn’t want to waste a single moment! I was over a hour away from town. I said goodnight and thanked them  as I accelerated. I could see off to my right one of them tail slapping more than three times in a row. I considered that to be them waving goodbye and goodnight!

On my way back I passed through Tsapee Narrows where the Daredevil lives. It was getting dark but not dark enough for me to be able to see the Daredevil flying towards me! He flaired right above me and a large feather immediately fell! I turned around and picked it up and thanked him!

The feather gift was the cherry to top off a excellent Orca shoot!

46 thoughts on “ORCARAMA

  1. What an amazing day, for you! Not only getting great photos and video but also having them talk to you! Then Daredevil topping off your day. Wonderful!


    “Do not remember the former things,
    Nor consider the things of old.
    19 Behold, I will do a new thing,
    Now it shall spring forth;
    Shall you not know it?
    I will even make a road in the wilderness
    And rivers in the desert…..Isaiah 43:18-19

  3. What a fantastic experience Wayne. I found it quite moving. I am glad you had all that time with the Orcas. I look forward to more pictures and the videos.

    1. I certainly was moved by this! I suspect they had just made a kill and were celebrating? These are the “Transients”.They eat warm blooded animals were as the “Residents” eat only Chinook salmon.

  4. I enjoyed each of these posts on the Orcas Wayne. I always view the posts from the first one you posted so did not read your narrative about how you happened to see them or how Orcas vocalize – I just asked you that in one of the other posts. As a photographer you were there at the right time/right place and I am sure it will be a night you will long remember, plus the good luck feather as well. Thank goodness you ran into your friend who told you about the Orcas’ arrival!

      1. Yes you have told me that sometimes everything just comes together and you’re at the right place at the right time to reap the rewards.

  5. I would say the Orcas and Daredevil all accepted you as a kindred Soul and were expressing that to you. What beautiful experiences! Thank you so much for sharing, Wayne. 💞

      1. How wonderful! You have such remarkable insight into what will work with your animal friends and what will not, that they will surely be something to see and admire. I for one am looking forward to your next adventure. 💞

  6. A perfectly blissful encounter, Wayne. Wow! Your descriptions were engaging, from the bike ride with your friend calling out to you, to your rush to get into your boat, to finding the orcas. Searching for three hours, now that’s impressive tenacity. The slapping and breaching, fantastic, then the vocalizations, incredible. Then an eagle feather drifting your way to top it off. This is exactly why we devote ourselves to the outdoors and all the magic it offers. Absolutely delightful photos and story, my friend. Thanks for making my day.

  7. Wow, what a life you live Wayne. It sounds so awesome. Every time I read and see your posts I wish I was on the West Coast. Such beautiful wildlife…..Awesome post. I think the Orcas like the eagles were enjoying your company. 👏👏

      1. eagles yes,Orcas no. They come and go. It would be hard to become friendly with a Orca. They never hang around.
        There was a Orca (Luna) who hung around Gold river for awhile but it eventually was killed by a tug prop.

      2. yes and the saddest part of that story is that it could of been avoided!
        First Nations stopped government officials from trying to take Luna to another pod.
        A native elder passed away near the date when Luna showed up,so they said the elder was reborn into Luna. So they stopped all efforts by the government to reunite Luna with her pod.
        Which lead to Luna being struck by the prop and killing her.
        Luna had a habit of playing around boats and people.So it was inevitable that she would be injured and or killed!

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