Thanks to Tony Lorenz and Nancy Black of the Monterey Bay Whalewatch, I was able to get out to search for what I called the Killers of the Davenport hills (because we found them off Davenport).
These are actually transient killer whales, and the day before they’d killed a gray whale calf.
In the small boat they’re trying to get an opportunity to affix a satellite tag. They’d succeeded with one tag the day before.
Turns out I know those researchers, led by Ken Balcomb and Bob Pitman. Small world.
I’d been on ships with Pitman in the eastern tropical Pacific. Pitman has probably seen more whale species than anyone else. He believes there are actually 4 or 5 different species of killer whales worldwide. Maybe it’s a big world, after all.
I’ve put several more photos on my facebook page.