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5 minutes ago, Sail4beer said:

Do they only attack black bottom painted rudders thinking they are seals hiding under boats? 

Or, do they resemble Richard Harris by chance?

errr, no...

this behaviour has been ongoing since a while now and biologists and other knowitalls are convinced that it is simply due to a couple juvenile orca's fooling around and finding that by slapping the rudder they can move a yacht around, so they have this "hey. look what I can do, this is fun" moment which is then copied by others ... when asked if there is a remedy all those biologists and assorted knowitalls are still scratching their head, the only way would be to kill 'em  and teach 'em (they are pretty intelligent) that there are consequences, but that is something nobody would say out loud

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33 minutes ago, Albatros said:

errr, no...

this behaviour has been ongoing since a while now and biologists and other knowitalls are convinced that it is simply due to a couple juvenile orca's fooling around and finding that by slapping the rudder they can move a yacht around, so they have this "hey. look what I can do, this is fun" moment which is then copied by others ... when asked if there is a remedy all those biologists and assorted knowitalls are still scratching their head, the only way would be to kill 'em  and teach 'em (they are pretty intelligent) that there are consequences, but that is something nobody would say out loud

That's an interesting theory. I was thinking maybe a sailboat ran over and injured or killed one, and they are now just pissed off.

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1 hour ago, Sail4beer said:

Do they only attack black bottom painted rudders thinking they are seals hiding under boats? 

Or, do they resemble Richard Harris by chance?

Last time I checked, it would kill an orca to drink two cases of beer, punch out the local rugby team's captain and then bang three starlets in a single evening.  I guess it killed Richard Harris too, after 60 or 70 years of  constantly engaging in that behavior.  

Wait, are we talking about the same Richard Harris? 

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My wife just went kayaking with Beluga whales in Hudson Bay. They grabbed the kayak rudders, wiggling the kayaks around. And surfaced under them, lifting up the kayaks and sometimes capsizing them.

Teenagers I'm guessing.

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Thank God we don’t have a beaver tailed bulb.  It’s bad enough having the Harbor Porpoises swimming next to the stinger bulb asking “hey baby, what’s your sign?”  Then there’s this soft thump…..

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2 hours ago, Amati said:

Thank God we don’t have a beaver tailed bulb.  It’s bad enough having the Harbor Porpoises swimming next to the stinger bulb asking “hey baby, what’s your sign?”  Then there’s this soft thump…..

Hmm…. I’d better stick to fresh water!

29C06E36-81CE-492A-9406-6492F170B07F.jpeg

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12 hours ago, The great unwashed said:

If orcas ever decide that humans are interesting snacks, I’m moving to Montana. 

This.  I sort of wondered why they haven't  as they seem to be the ocean's apex predator and did a google on it.  Plenty of bite / human deaths but they all seem to be confined to long time captive whales who have issues.  Maybe they just know we taste bad?

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20 hours ago, longy said:

Are these critters 'protected species ' in any way?? Have to think I'd be harpooning them if they were attacking my boat. Them or me.

When I was a kid, we were out with my grandad fishing off of Santa Barbara, and a pod of Orca got excited and started ‘nudging’ his large Chris Craft around.  Harpooning was not exactly on anyone’s mind. But I think it had happened before.

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18 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

I had an orca surfing the quarterwave during the transatlantic race, but it didnt touch us. Maybe Olin just knew how to draw a sweet quarter wave.

Sweet curl, dude….

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Looks like the sharks also want to get in on the action.  Friend posted this on FB yesterday.  They were delivering Pyewacket back to CA after the Transpac when a shark approached them and went under the boat......woke up the off watch crew as the shark attempted to chew off the bulb.  The were doing about 17 kts at the time.

May be an image of outdoors

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5 hours ago, Huggy Bear Brown said:

Looks like the sharks also want to get in on the action.  Friend posted this on FB yesterday.  They were delivering Pyewacket back to CA after the Transpac when a shark approached them and went under the boat......woke up the off watch crew as the shark attempted to chew off the bulb.  The were doing about 17 kts at the time.

May be an image of outdoors

That would make a nice hull graphic….

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From what I know about killer whales they mostly hunt and move using a built in sonar.  I am wondering if there is some noise these boats that have been bumped make that affects them.  While I have never seen a killer whale in the wild I have often had dolphins and porpoises play around my boat both moving and at anchor but never had them touch it.  Also seen pilot whales breaching somewhat close to the boat but again never touched the boat.  

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12 minutes ago, Tomfl said:

From what I know about killer whales they mostly hunt and move using a built in sonar.  I am wondering if there is some noise these boats that have been bumped make that affects them.  While I have never seen a killer whale in the wild I have often had dolphins and porpoises play around my boat both moving and at anchor but never had them touch it.  Also seen pilot whales breaching somewhat close to the boat but again never touched the boat.  

Rudder Hum?

or Rudder Om?

 

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The amount of noise pollution orca are able to hunt in makes me doubt the interaction is caused by a boat noise.

That said I suspect a bull orca once asked me to tone it down. We were cruising in south Puget Sound at about 14 knots when the bull rolled up beside the boat about 6' away, same course and speed. He stayed there ~ 5 seconds then left. We were close to an unfamiliar, rocky shore so I left the sonar on but chopped the throttles. A couple minutes later we saw his pod hunting about 1/2 mile ahead.

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13 hours ago, Tomfl said:

From what I know about killer whales they mostly hunt and move using a built in sonar.  I am wondering if there is some noise these boats that have been bumped make that affects them.  While I have never seen a killer whale in the wild I have often had dolphins and porpoises play around my boat both moving and at anchor but never had them touch it.  Also seen pilot whales breaching somewhat close to the boat but again never touched the boat.  

We were sailing the U20 under assym up to Port Ludlow, my wife sitting on the bow, and a bunch of Harbor Porpoises were bouncing around the boat (another bulb!).  One brushed her leg.  
 

We like to shut the Depth Sounder off when the Orcas are around. If we’re sailing, and not motoring, they’ll even swim over and check us out.  One time a new mom brought her baby Orca over (about the size of Harbor Porpoise).  It was nice, and their breath doesn’t stink like grey whale’s do. :blink:
 

You haven’t lived until an Orca surfaces right next to you when you’re sailing a D2.  The chant inside your brain goes something like “don’t fall the fuck in”.  Their saddle is huge.  The CRIT D2 must have looked like a Sea Lion being ridden by a seal (black wetsuit) holding a sail?  An argument for bigger boats in the San Juan Islands, I guess…..
 

 

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18 hours ago, Autonomous said:

The amount of noise pollution orca are able to hunt in makes me doubt the interaction is caused by a boat noise.

That said I suspect a bull orca once asked me to tone it down. We were cruising in south Puget Sound at about 14 knots when the bull rolled up beside the boat about 6' away, same course and speed. He stayed there ~ 5 seconds then left. We were close to an unfamiliar, rocky shore so I left the sonar on but chopped the throttles. A couple minutes later we saw his pod hunting about 1/2 mile ahead.

I've watched that happen with an orca pod where the largest male has turned sideways in front of a group of whale watching boats to stop them in their tracks, and then stayed still until the others, including two little guys, swam away around the corner.   It seemed that he was up on the latest state regs for orca watching.

We were sailing in light air at 4-5 knots and the orca's had no interest in us.  Just swam past ignoring us. 

On 8/11/2021 at 7:57 AM, bridhb said:

This.  I sort of wondered why they haven't  as they seem to be the ocean's apex predator and did a google on it.  Plenty of bite / human deaths but they all seem to be confined to long time captive whales who have issues.  Maybe they just know we taste bad?

The oceanic pods that are not tied to a geographic area seem to be more "eat anything" types.  The local pods, such as here in the Salish, are focused on one food source.  Ou local pod eats only the bellies of chinook salmon.  It seems that they'd rather go hungry than eat anything else.  

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17 minutes ago, Left Shift said:

I've watched that happen with an orca pod where the largest male has turned sideways in front of a group of whale watching boats to stop them in their tracks, and then stayed still until the others, including two little guys, swam away around the corner.   It seemed that he was up on the latest state regs for orca watching.

 

We went looking for orca the first year we took the boat out in the San Juans and found a super pod off the west side of San Juan Island. The pressure on the pod from all the boats was sickening. Some of the commercial boats were the worst even cutting off private boats views deliberately. This was before the current, stricter regulations.

After that we didn't seek them again. 

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17 minutes ago, Autonomous said:

We went looking for orca the first year we took the boat out in the San Juans. We found the super pod off the west side of San Juan Island. The pressure on the pod from all the boats was sickening. Some of the commercial boats were the worst even cutting off private boats views deliberately. This was before the current, stricter regulations.

After that we didn't seek them again. 

Times have changed.  The whale watching companies have been very strict about following the rules, knowing that they will be out of business otherwise.  Last time we were up there, we saw J Pod swimming north inside Whidbey Island.  The pod had two baby orcas.  There was a WA Fish and Wildlife boat and an Everett FD marine patrol boat accompanying the pod and making sure every trailing boat was keeping 1/2 mile away.   

However, when sailing, I have had orcas come within a few feet of the boat as they travel on their way.  

Then there are moments like this (yes, I know, not orcas.  Just why we live around here):

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17 hours ago, Left Shift said:

Times have changed.  The whale watching companies have been very strict about following the rules, knowing that they will be out of business otherwise.  Last time we were up there, we saw J Pod swimming north inside Whidbey Island.  The pod had two baby orcas.  There was a WA Fish and Wildlife boat and an Everett FD marine patrol boat accompanying the pod and making sure every trailing boat was keeping 1/2 mile away.   

However, when sailing, I have had orcas come within a few feet of the boat as they travel on their way.  

Then there are moments like this (yes, I know, not orcas.  Just why we live around here):

 

Where was that?  So many together- annual convention?  :lol:  Our favorite guys out there.  

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6 hours ago, Amati said:

Where was that?  So many together- annual convention?  :lol:  Our favorite guys out there.  

Johnstone Straits, June 2019, on a huge ebb tide.  They were playing in the leading edge of the tidal surge.  Oddly, we didn't see any orcas that year.  Not even at Robson's Bight.

* And I do mean huge.  These are upwind numbers in 7 knots true. 

94170046_4.087knotcurrentinstrument.thumb.jpg.da54671b2d95036a34220314d685dbf9.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

clearly the skipper did everything that he should / could of done. I wonder if there was any damage to the quadrant cables or chain? If not thenwouldn't building stronger rudders would be a better idea? Yes that would mean more weight aft which is undesirable but not as undesirable as trying to sail back to port rudder less. I built a new rudder for my previous boat, the stock was Aquamet and I had 6 heavy duty aquamet prongs in pairs, then inside the prongs, I recessed a solid piece of mahogany, then added a fairing of marine plywood outside the prongs, through bolted the all the prongs, and then sheaved it with glass for water protection. I wonder if that would have survived? I was very strong, and surprisingly lighter than the old rudder, probably because it was water logged. My new boat is steel so I do think they would be able to break that. I think I would try firing flares or something at them if they attacked my rudder though

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I have heard that this is an recurring issue (40-50 boats damaged) to the point of causing regulations restricting sailing in certain zones off the coast of Portugal to be implemented.  I can understand the "we're in there world" attitude but if they sink a boat one day by cracking the hull at the rudder post things will likely escalate.

I wonder if there is non-lethal deterrent that would work, like noise that they find annoying enough to make them decide to leave.  I know they are big enough to do whatever they want but that doesn't mean you can annoy them back.

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If M80 type firecrackers are available over there (or seal bombs) I'd start with that. If noise doesn't work, I'd revert back to ancestral knowledge and harpoon them. Quite lucky no boats have been sunk yet, some of the damage pictures are scary - lots of force involved

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15 hours ago, longy said:

If M80 type firecrackers are available over there (or seal bombs) I'd start with that. If noise doesn't work, I'd revert back to ancestral knowledge and harpoon them. Quite lucky no boats have been sunk yet, some of the damage pictures are scary - lots of force involved

Always good to piss off a critter that weighs as much as your boat and is likely stronger.

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  • 2 months later...
On 8/10/2021 at 8:45 AM, Raz'r said:

That's an interesting theory. I was thinking maybe a sailboat ran over and injured or killed one, and they are now just pissed off.

It ain't Jaws III.

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On 8/25/2021 at 8:21 PM, longy said:

If M80 type firecrackers are available over there (or seal bombs) I'd start with that. If noise doesn't work, I'd revert back to ancestral knowledge and harpoon them. Quite lucky no boats have been sunk yet, some of the damage pictures are scary - lots of force involved

Has anyone ever heard of harpooning an Orca by an indigenous group?  Or of Orcas being harvested for blubber, baleen, oil or meat?  

I would suspect that could be a bad idea. I've been very close to Beluga, Humpback, Minke whales and a fair number of Orcas.  Orcas just put out a sense of power and "don't fuck with me" that the whales just don't give off.

But when I googled it, I did find this: 

 https://search.yahoo.com/search;_ylt=Awr9ImGQHIthjLoAcTlXNyoA;_ylu=Y29sbwNncTEEcG9zAzEEdnRpZAMEc2VjA3JlbC1ib3Q-?p=orca+hunting+techniques+for+beginners&ei=UTF-8&fr2=p%3As%2Cv%3Aw%2Cm%3Ars-bottom&fr=aaplw

Good luck all you beginners.  :)

The ancestral knowledge may be of how bad humans taste, not the other way around.

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On 8/25/2021 at 5:36 PM, Tharsheblows said:

I have heard that this is an recurring issue (40-50 boats damaged) to the point of causing regulations restricting sailing in certain zones off the coast of Portugal to be implemented.  I can understand the "we're in there world" attitude but if they sink a boat one day by cracking the hull at the rudder post things will likely escalate.

I wonder if there is non-lethal deterrent that would work, like noise that they find annoying enough to make them decide to leave.  I know they are big enough to do whatever they want but that doesn't mean you can annoy them back.

Where you live (and where I live, it is a very hefty fine if you intentionally get close enough to an Orca (not vice versa) to "annoy" them.  

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Amazing. We had a mature bull roll up alongside 10 feet away from our powerboat just off Boston Harbor (WA). He asked us to give room and tone it down so I chopped the throttles. Soon the pod started their salmon hunting behavior 3/4 mile away. Cool.

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On 11/9/2021 at 5:25 PM, Left Shift said:

Where you live (and where I live, it is a very hefty fine if you intentionally get close enough to an Orca (not vice versa) to "annoy" them.  

I think the problem we are discussing is not people "intentionally" getting close to orcas... its orcas getting close to people.  And yes, I agree, in California you would likely get in more trouble for hurting an Orca than you would for hurting a person.  

Those videos posted by Ncik (and others) lead me to believe that the "attacking" orcas are probably just playing, even if their play is scary and destructive.  Maybe, if you made yourself less fun to play with it might solve the problem.  "Annoying" them might not have to be harmful (like m80's) it could be a submersible speaker that makes a noise at a frequency/volume that they don't like that could be deployed when needed.  That may sound like a pain in the ass but it sure beats losing a rudder.

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11 hours ago, longy said:

Baby seals??

The insurance companies are instructing super yachts  to carry tuna  suites 

when the hungry orcas off Tarifa start circling the yacht they suite up a deck hand and send him over the side 

The orcas chop, give a thumbs up , then the super yacht scampers off 

seems to work , 

pick up  fresh deckhands in Cadiz 

48957A53-E881-41E9-899A-27E1B654E912.jpeg

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On 11/14/2021 at 8:17 PM, Tharsheblows said:

I think the problem we are discussing is not people "intentionally" getting close to orcas... its orcas getting close to people.  And yes, I agree, in California you would likely get in more trouble for hurting an Orca than you would for hurting a person.  

Those videos posted by Ncik (and others) lead me to believe that the "attacking" orcas are probably just playing, even if their play is scary and destructive.  Maybe, if you made yourself less fun to play with it might solve the problem.  "Annoying" them might not have to be harmful (like m80's) it could be a submersible speaker that makes a noise at a frequency/volume that they don't like that could be deployed when needed.  That may sound like a pain in the ass but it sure beats losing a rudder.

The orca learned to feed off inshore tuna long liners 

6BEBF2AD-B06E-4CEA-A82B-32EC91D55F60.png

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