Early June, so less than six months old and we find two black bear cubs while on the trip up Knight Inlet to view grizzly bears. Although we go on a specialized black bear trip on your first evening in the lodge we frequently see black bears while on the grizzly bear and whales watching tours as well as the trip to Trapper Rick’s.
Bald eagles are only achieve their white headed between three and five years and prior to that they are able to sit in trees unnoticed. When soaring high an immature eagle is a little more noticeable. Still majestic with their wing span but something is missing.
One of my best and again luck dominates skill. I knew the orca was going to pass beneath the boat but did not know that its calf would be traveling in mother’s slip stream. The baby swims close to its mother and can be carried in the a type of hydrodynamic wake, which develops as the mother swims. This helps the baby swim with less energy and enables the mother and calf to keep up with the pod.
Grizzly bears mate in the spring and their babies are born from January to March so it can live in its den for about four months during the coldest weather. The grizzly bear cubs of Knight Inlet first appear on the shore with their mothers in late May. This meas the cubs are three to four months old and will remain with their mothers or two or three years. Although still nursing this cub copies mother and will start on solid food.
Humpback whales migrate to tropical or subtropical water in the winter to breed and give birth in February and March. By the time the whales return to our viewing areas the calf’s are close to four months old and still on their mother’s milk. This calf is a larger and therefore in it’s second year. These calves are normally very active frequently seen breaching and lobbtailing.
It is mid morning on Johnstone Strait and we came upon a pod of what appeared to be orca resting. I am not sure that I would call this resting as most of the time seemed to have been spent playing. This pod of orca took more than an hour to move a hundred meters (yards). The adults would drift with the current while the young spy hopped, tail slapped and rolled on their backs. Fantastic viewing and I even saved on fuel.
July and a mother grizzly bear and her cub of the year are on the beach working on a meal of mussels. The mother on scrapping them off a log while the cub was more into turning over rocks. The mother persisted on the log and was eventually join by her cub. Note: the mothers back upper leg has not regrown the fur that was rubbed off during hibernation.
Grizzly bears are slow reproducers and litters of one to three cubs are the norm. In the last several years, however we have been lucky to witness three separate mothers with four cubs. It is a true testament to the availability of food in the area.
Check out this trip description from a previous guest
Our visit to Grizzly Bear Lodge
.. went back to fishing and ignored us completely. It never ceases to amaze me how the grizzlies of the Glendale River have accepted our presence and as long as we remain stationary we become part of the background and are not a threat. That does not mean that the pepper spray was not ready to be used. I talked to the guests and the said that they did not feel threatened and that the bear seem calm and deliberate in it’s actions.