Every tour from the lodge involves wildlife viewing in this case a rather large black bear. This viewing was on a morning grizzly bear trip up Knight Inlet. We leave the lodge about eight o’clock and it takes a little over an hour to reach the grizzly watching area but along the way we frequently see black bears. This one enjoying breakfast on the beach, turning over rocks, eating barnacles or muscles, small crabs or anything that moves, as well as seaweed. This is a good-sized bear and notice the white patch on the chest it is common. “OK so we can’t all be grizzlies!” was Harold Bailey’s comment for the photo he provided from his UK was the first week of September.
The last 3 years we have been starting to view sea otters in our area more regularly. They are still often a distance away, but the sightings are increasing with some “rafts” of them developing in areas near the western portion of our whale watching trips. These animals were hunted heavily for their fur and were completely wiped out of British Columbia waters. Re-introduction occurred from Alaskan otters in the 1960’s. They have long been protected and their numbers have been steadily increasing along the exposed BC coast and are now moving back into inside waters. They are unique in that they don’t have the insulating blubber that other marine mammals use to keep warm. As a result they have dense (over 1 million hairs per square inch) fur and feed heavily. They are important in balancing the eco-system. They eat a lot of sea urchins, which eat a lot of kelp. Kelp is extremely important as it provides cover for juvenile fish and is where the herring spawn in the early spring. With the increase in these otters we are seeing a greater abundance and healthier kelp forests.Visit our Blog