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Thread: Name the whale

  1. #1
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
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    Name the whale

    Is this an Orca fin? Any confident identification?

    Thanks. We don't have many down here.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
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  2. #2
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    I would say yes. Possibly following the grey whale calves migrating up the coast. We saw several greys and what we think we humpback off San Francisco last week.
    Mike Field
    "Jenny" E35-3 #251
    San Francisco

  3. #3
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    That does look like an orca dorsal fin. Most orca can be identified by their fins -- that one looks like it might be local resident CA7.

    http://kohola-kai.tumblr.com/post/12...os-angeles-pod

    Chuck

  4. #4
    Moderator Christian Williams's Avatar
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    Good info. The picture is from this past summer, 10 miles off south side of San Miguel in the Channel Islands.

    There were a dozen fins in sight for hours, but none ever came close enough for a real ID.
    Thelonious II, E381 hull 513 (1984) Universal 5432
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  5. #5
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ID:	24905Yes that definitely looks like an Orca. Most likely a female or possibly a teenager. Adult male dorsals are taller and more evenly triangular in shape with no or little backward sweep. The female dorsals are shorter and tend to have that curve on the trailing edge although there are plenty of variations in individuals. One on the left is male and the one on the right is female.

    If you got close enough there is also typically a grey patch on the body just aft of the dorsal called a saddle that is a sure giveaway for an orca. But not easy to spot and often missed against the black.

    Ran through a pod of them a few weekends ago.

    Kevin Wright
    E35 Hydro Therapy

  6. #6
    Contributing Partner Teranodon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Williams View Post
    Is this an Orca fin?
    Looks photoshopped to me. I see orcas all the time, but always surrounded by noisy, obnoxious whale-watching boats.
    Stefan Michalowski
    Friday Harbor, WA
    1988 Ericson 34 "Talpa"

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