West Seattle whale-watching: 2 groups of orcas in the area

(Added: Photo by Gary Jones, from Alki Point)

1:30 PM: Thanks to Kersti Muul for the tip! Southern Resident Killer Whales – K-Pod, to be specific – are headed this way, northbound from Burien’s Three Tree Point. They passed here southbound earlier in the day and have now turned around. Please let us know if you see them!

2:01 PM: Another texter says they’re in view from south of Alki Point.

2:54 PM: Turns out there are TWO groups of orcas in the area – southbound transients, northbound residents. And a TV helicopter (according to FlightRadar 24‘s tracker, the one channels 4/5 share) is buzzing them right now off Fauntleroy.

3:16 PM: Thanks for the updates in comments! NB whales are off The Arroyos now.

4:17 PM: As dusk nears, they’re between Fauntleroy and Vashon, per comments as well as a call from Donna Sandstrom of The Whale Trail.

10 Replies to "West Seattle whale-watching: 2 groups of orcas in the area"

  • Cathy January 10, 2019 (1:56 pm)

    Out toward Blake island.

  • Scott Collins January 10, 2019 (3:00 pm)

    Any updates?

    • WSB January 10, 2019 (3:04 pm)

      Transients southbound off Lincoln Park as of a short time ago.

  • Jen January 10, 2019 (3:14 pm)

    Pod northbound right off the arroyos at 3:10. Group of 6-10.

  • Ali January 10, 2019 (4:16 pm)

    Moving north…Near Vashon ferry dock right now (just north of it). 

  • vlado January 10, 2019 (4:17 pm)

    Currently mid channel, east of Blake Island.

  • anonyme January 10, 2019 (4:51 pm)

    I saw a shocking bit of news a week or so ago and was surprised how quickly it was wiped from the internet.  Japan has withdrawn from the IWC (International Whaling Commission) and plans to resume commercial whaling.  I don’t know that killer whales will be affected, but  I found this news shocking.  As if the slaughter of whales and dolphins depicted in the documentary “The Cove” weren’t appalling enough, Japan now intends to once again hunt whale species that have been off-limits for many years.  Just when it seems humanity has risen to some level of awareness regarding the treatment of other species, something like this happens.  Hoping to find a way to fight this, still looking for more info.   Definitely taking a return visit to Japan off the bucket list…

  • Amy January 10, 2019 (10:12 pm)

    My husband rushed home to paddle out said he saw four smaller orcas in the pod of 11. What an incredible view from Lowman Beach today.

  • Kathi January 12, 2019 (11:09 am)

    Am I wrong, but to reduce stress on the orcas aren’t we supposed to observe from a distance? Paddling out to get a better view does not seem like a good idea. 

  • Donna January 12, 2019 (12:34 pm)

    Hi Kathi, you are right. Noise and disturbance from vessels – including kayaks – are costing the southern residents energy and opportunities to find food. Any approach interrupts and may change what they are doing. The southern residents will go extinct within less than 100 years if we don’t change what we are doing, now.  Watch from shore and give them the best chance to find what food is there.

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