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Photo: A Minke on a Mission

(Credit: Jared Towers, Marine Education and Research Society)

While camping and kayaking at Gooding Cove last week, we had several sightings of a sole Minke whale at the perimeter of the cove, surfacing and diving. Seeing the immense back of this beauty breaking the ocean's surface never got old. By day four of our vacation there, we awoke to increased sightings and activity by the Minke. I even saw it shoot straight out of the water with a mouth full of fish.

Later, when the coast seemed clear, I went out in my kayak, only to find that not only was the Minke back, it was right in the cove. Herring were jumping all around, which signaled to me that maybe I should get out of there. Clearly, the Minke was forcing them into the bay to get a good feed. As I watched from the beach, suddenly there was a very loud blow from its blow hole as it surfaced nearby. It was right next to my friend, who was still on the water in his little inflatable pontoon boat. The Minke stayed on the surface, tipping onto its side a few times to check him out. He became a bit unnerved, wondering if the Minke might accidentally bump him, and started paddling to shore. The Minke swam alongside with him for a bit before carrying on. Later that day, when the Minke was clearly gone, I set out in my kayak again. Herring were still jumping erratically, and looking over the side of my kayak, I was floored by the numbers of herring beside and around me. The next morning the herring were gone, the Minke was gone, but the seals and sea otters returned, providing ongoing entertainment.

I don't want such moments to be cherished, faded memories of 'what once was'. The health of oceans already have challenges of increasing acidity. Oceans need solutions, not an assault of yet another risk factor. The development of the Enbridge Gateway Pipeline Project is not acceptable in any form.

Message to Canadians: Humans are the only species who destroy their own habitat — let's correct that.

http://www.davidsuzuki.org/issues/oceans/projects/healthy-oceans/pacific-ocean-stories/a-minke-on-a-mission/

By Wendy Glos

Port McNeill, BC

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3 Comments

Sep 19, 2012
8:50 PM

Yes, we are so complacent that the money mongers get their way!!! I wonder if they have family??? children???? grandchildren???? Seems NOT as they do not care about the future of the planet, our food supply, and the animal population … just the all mighty $ NOW. STOP all destruction to our Natural Environment and Natural Food Supply!!

Sep 06, 2012
6:59 AM

Great story! enjoyed reading about your adventures.

Aug 30, 2012
1:20 PM

what an experience!

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