All photos courtesy of Lifeforce Foundation

Wild Again at the Point - July 2010

Published on Fri, Jun 25, 2010 by Peter Hamilton, Lifeforce Founding Director

Read More Wild At The Point

Everything from auklets to zebra whales are back at Point Roberts for us human animals to appreciate and enjoy. Well, actually, the zebra whales are the black and white orcas but I thought I would use the “a to z” expression to emphasize the diversity of wildlife. And there are the land-loving orcas in South America who propel themselves onto beaches to catch seals.

Here we have three fish-eating resident pods of orca. Last census was only at 86. The J’s are usually found throughout the year in local waters to Puget Sound while L’s and K’s return in May or June. For the past two years, J pod has spent less time in the inside waters with a two month absence during March and April. They returned to Haro Strait on April 30 and passed by Point Roberts on May 1. Then they left again.

Transient orcas, whose diet includes seals, sea lions, porpoises and grey whales, have been spotted off the bluffs. They can be alone, in groups of two or more and large groups of 18 or more. During the ’70s the dorsal fin of a resident was notched for ID purposes. A transmitter was also bolted onto transient # T014. Minor to major dorsal fins injuries can also be seen.

On May 13, a lot of orcas were seen off Campbell River. It was thought to be the return of L’s and K’s. At 12:30 on May 14 I entered Active Pass to see about 20 L pod orcas moving in tight groups along the southerly shore as numerous eagles were soaring above. As did J pod, they headed west back to the ocean. Were they in search of the other pods, food or quiet space from the boat noise?
Porpoises and Feathered Wonders.

Harbor porpoises have been in abundance around the Point spending a lot of time feeding. California sea lions and Steller sea lions are in bachelor groups and began returning to the southern reproductive rookeries in May and June.

I have seen all kinds of feathered wonders including the Rhinoceros Auklets, Pigeon Guillemots, Pacific Loons, Brandt Geese, Surf Scoters, and Greater Scaups. At low tides a dozen or so eagles can be seen north of Kiniski’s Reef and more along the Boundary Bay shore.

Everyone can enjoy great land based whale and wildlife watching at Lighthouse Marine Park. Boaters should remember that the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is enforcing orca protection regulations with fines of $1,000. Basically boats must give clear passage to orcas. Boats must be at least 100 yards distance from them and not block any approaching orcas. Engines and sounders should be turned off. More details are at Get Off My Tail:

To report violations call:
 Fisheries and Oceans Canada:
NOAA Fisheries: 800/853-1964

Respect and Enjoy Wildlife
While we marvel at the wonders of wildlife please don’t approach, feed or try to touch. Respect and enjoy them from a distance. Lifeforce’s wildlife videos, and photographs are available at

Donations are greatly appreciated and can be sent to Lifeforce, Box 121, Point Roberts, 98281 or Box 3117, Vancouver, B.C. V6B 3X6. Thank you.

Note: This is the second article about wildlife on and around the Point in 2010. The other stories are at

Wild Again at the Point - August 2010

The different appearances and behaviors of the feathered wonders on the Point bring to mind Darwin’s theory of evolution.

Wild Again at the Point - July 2010

Everything from auklets to zebra whales are back at Point Roberts for us human animals to appreciate and enjoy.

Wild at the Point: Wildlife Past and Future

It was more than 25 years ago when Lifeforce helped stop the now defunct “Sealand” in Victoria, BC from capturing local resident orcas.

Wild at the Point: Shore and Sea Birds. Part 2

This article concludes our two-part report of the diversity of shore and sea birds living in or migrating through Point Roberts at this time of year.

Wild at the Point: Shore and Sea Birds

During the past several years I found an exciting and challenging way to spend the down time that occurs when waiting to do Lifeforce’s orca protection programs.

Wild At The Point - Help Stop Orca Cruelty!

The US NOAA Fisheries has started a public comment period to implement new laws to restrict boat traffic in the vicinity of orcas.