With sightings of a juvenile Sei Whale on July 11th, July 25th, and August 3rd I have now completed one of my life goals! I have now seen every rorqual whale that occurs in the state of California. The rorquals I have not seen are the Dwarf and Antarctic Minke, the Omura's Whale, and the Eden's Head Whale (the latter two only have been recognized as species in the past decade) . It will take many thousands of hours of traveling and searching in farther flung parts of the world in order to ever have even a whiff of encountering those animals!
Add the Gray Whale to that total and I have seen every Baleen Whale that occurs in North American Pacific except for the Northern Pacific Right Whales which are dramatically few. A sighting on one of those rare animals in La Jolla this winter gives me some hope. There are also the Bowhead Whales of Alaska I dream to see one day.
Of the toothed whales that occur in California, the only ones I have not been fortunate enough to see largely fall into the Beaked Whale and Sperm Whale categories with the sole exception being the Rough Toothed Dolphin. It is my understand that Rough Toothed Dolphin occur in California only in 3000 ft of depth or greater!
In September I will be traveling to Plymouth, Massachusetts for a special all day trip that will more than likely bring some additional Humpback sightings, but also slim opportunities for North Atlantic Right Whales, Long Finned Pilot Whales, White Beaked Dolphin, and Atlantic White Sided Dolphin. Adding a new species to the list of those I have seen is quite possibly the biggest thrill I feel I can experience in the world as it is and I am hopeful that more opportunities will present themselves in the years to come.