Well this past year has been...eventful.
Without getting into politics, personal business, or going off the topic of conservation I like to promote, I will say that 2016 was not my favorite year ever on the calendar and leave it at that. Even just within the scope I do cover, there is more to talk about that one of these simple posts really allows.
The "baby boom" enjoyed by the Southern Resident Orcas was short lived and their populations is back down below 80 individuals. Two of the noteworthy losses were adults that passed from circumstances directly caused by humans, while the supply of life giving Chinook Salmon remains at risk. I remain an advocate for breaching the dams that are creating these situations, and for the SRKWs in general. A protection zone has been proposed that would put greater restrictions on vessels observing them, and while this would make it tougher to watch these animals as a whale watcher I think personal enjoyment is a small price to pay for their continued existence.
Southern California enjoyed rare sightings again. Pilot Whale, False Killer Whales, Offshore Killer Whales, Sperm Whales, Brydes Whales, and Striped Dolphin made a spate of appearances. The influx of Humpback Whales, a trend which started in 2014, continued in a big way. I don't know the official numbers but I can almost guarantee that we had a record number of Humpback Sightings by whale watching between Los Angeles and San Diego this year. Blue Whale sightings decreased but that does not seem to be the trend with their population thankfully.
I missed my annual visit to Washington this year but made trips to Monterey Bay and Baja that were very productive. I am hoping to visit more locations in 2017 and hopefully at least one I have never visited before.
Photography remains what it has always been to me. I do not consider myself the best in the business or any sort of elite photographer, but this is the primary mechanism I have chosen to convey a message to the world. "We need healthy oceans!"
Enjoy the next 359 days until Xmas everyone. Don't do anything I wouldn't do.