Sightings from 29-31 and 9/3 Fatfin (CA171B) was sighted in Monterey Bay with a female, CA169, for 4 days on August 29, 30, 31 and September 3rd. We have had several posts about him, so we are sure many of you know him well. He is named after his wide dorsal fin, and he has been the locals’ favorite for many years. He is fully capable of hunting on his own and is often seen by himself.
In 2021, he was sighted with 2 females, CA21 and CA169 on January 2 and 30th, and then sighted by himself on March 2nd.
In 2020, he was sighted with CA21 and CA169 on 1/25, 4/10, 4/18, and then sighted by himself on 8/7.
CA169 has been sighted with CA21 since the 1990s, they are long time friends!
Fatfin has been sighted with both CA21 and CA169 for the last several years. We also have a record of Fatfin with CA169 in 2004. Therefore, we can say that they have known each other for a while.
We cannot help to wonder why CA21 was not there for the last four sightings. It is possible, considering her age, she may be gone. However, it is too early to make such an assumption. Transient Bigg's killer whales will often travel on their own, meet up with other groups, and then come back to their original group later on. We will need a few more sightings of at least CA169 before we can conclude definitively that CA21 is no longer with us.
Hopefully, it is more like Fatfin and CA169 decided to spend some sweet alone time together!
Photos by Daniel Bianchetta and Morgan Quimby
Please share your killer whale sightings along the California coast with us! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with details!