Steller sea lions use land habitat as haul-out sites for periods of rest, molting, and as rookeries for mating and pupping during the breeding season. In this case it is a resting area as they migrate along the coast spending part of their spring and fall in the area where we watch whales. Steller sea lions have been known to migrate large distances (>400 nm) but it is presumed their routes remain coastal. They are solitary hunters but are often seen small groups, but may gather in large “rafts” at the surface near rookeries and haul outs. The haul-pouts are a noisy area as they are capable of powerful vocalizations that are accompanied by a vertical head bobbing motion by males.
Everything a humpback whale is about size. Length: up to 17 m (55 ft); Weight: up to 40,000 kg (88,000 lbs); A Large pectoral flipper, up to 1/3 length of body; and a tail fluke up to 5 m (15 ft) feet across. It would be possible to lay two dolphins nose to nose across the tail fluke of an adult humpback whale. Over the past five years humpback whales sightings have increased from four or five a day to twelve to fifteen. Tail lobbing, lunge feeding and tail fluking are common. It does not matter how often you see that tail come out of the water it is amazing.
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