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Gray whale wanders into downtown Vancouver

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"There be whales here!" - Montgomery Scott (James Doohan), Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

(fitting quote from an actor that was from Vancouver)

Gray whale wanders into downtown Vancouver

By: ctvbc.ca

Date: Wednesday May. 5, 2010 2:24 PM PT

A gray whale has made its way into Vancouver's False Creek, according to the B.C. Coast Guard.

Spokesman Dan Bate said the whale was spotted at around noon Wednesday and the coast guard was on scene monitoring its movement.

"A crew from Kitsilano was tasked to keep an eye on it and ensure there was no interference from other boaters," he said.

Authorities expect the whale to make its own way out of the area, Bate added.

Witnesses reported seeing the mammal swimming near the Cambie Street Bridge.

Article with photo: CTV BC: Gray whale wanders into downtown Vancouver

CTV ususually adds videos later in the day just after broadcast.

Nice to see False Creek cleaned up and wildlife returning again. :)B)

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Really cool...it swam right to BC Place and in front of the Olympic Village. Imagine if this happened during the Olympics, bypassing the RCMP security checkpoint in the waters. :P

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Soon after I started this thread CTV posted a video. It's on the same link in the first post.

There was a Gray Whale in Squamish too the other day the news reported.

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Well, the news here is that False Creek is quiet small and very much in the middle of the city. The place is full of marinas, surrounded by homes and condos and has 3 bridges crossing it. A rare sighting, indeed.

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Apparently the same whale returned to False Creek today for a two-day visit. :D

There's a video on CTV BC now showing a group of dolphins in the area.

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At least 200 dolphins were spotted off the coast of Vancouver yesterday feeding on herring, there has never ever been so many dolphins spotted near the city. But they occasionally do explore English Bay and False Creek. This comes a day after the two-day gray whale visit.

Dolphin party enjoys herring feeding-frenzy in Howe Sound

By Vivian Luk, Vancouver Sun May 7, 2010 7:29 PM

VANCOUVER -- Nearly 200 Pacific white-sided dolphins have been sighted around Howe Sound during the last few weeks, a rare phenomenon according to the Vancouver Aquarium.

Lance Barrett-Lennard, the head of whale and dolphin research at the aquarium, had set off for Howe Sound with three others on Thursday to observe the creatures. Rather than jumping and flipping, Barrett-Lennard found the dolphins swimming quietly.

"It is a good sign though," he said. "It means that they have just stuffed themselves and needed to slow down for a while, like the way we do during Thanksgiving."

Barrett-Lennard said that white-sided dolphins are one of the most abundant cetaceans living in B.C.'s coast, and they can travel in groups of up to 3,000. Yet very few people have seen them in Howe Sound because they tend to live in offshore waters near the west and north side of Vancouver Island.

"It's rare enough to find them along the Strait of Georgia," he said. "We've never seen them in Howe Sound before, and never in such big numbers."

Barrett-Lennard also saw a large number of young dolphins and a few newborn calves, which was a "real thrill" because white-sided dolphins live up to 40 years old and do not reproduce often. He suspects that the animals, which are dark grey and measure up to 2.3 metres, are here to feed on herring.

"We've had an unusually large herring spawn this year, which is another good sign," he said. "Herring are at the bottom of the food chain, so when they do well, those that feed on them will do well, too. It means our ecosystem is healthy."

Another mammal thought to be feeding on herring in Vancouver is the 12-metre grey whale that swam into False Creek on Wednesday and Thursday.

"Grey whales have come through here in the past to feed while they migrate to the Arctic during springtime," said Paul Cottrell, Department of Fisheries and Oceans marine mammal coordinator. "What's unique is that it hung around for so long."

"There are several possibilities why it ventured inland," said Barrett-Lennard. "It could be looking for food, or it got spooked by killer whales, or there is something wrong with it and it was disoriented. But from what we could tell, it was not acting sick, so we're not concerned about its health."


Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/technology/Video+Dolphin+party+enjoys+herring+feeding+frenzy+Howe+Sound/3001046/story.html#ixzz0nJH7ao9C

But back to the whale....the last time a full whale came into Vancouver, it was the summer of 2009 when a cruise ship arrived with an impaled whale:


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