We begin our season in late May with this very popular Safari. It's a great way to experience the diverse wildlife and awe inspiring scenery that exists so close to Campbell River!
The Transient or Bigg's Orca (mammal eating ecotype) have been increasingly common in recent years. In fact over the last two seasons we've been fortunate enough to view them on 70% of our trips in May, June and early July! The reason for this dramatic increase all has to do with food. Pacific Harbour Seals are their favorite prey item and the seal population has rebounded to historic levels providing the whales with a great source of food without the need to travel long distances.
The behaviour of Transient (Bigg's) Orca differs completely from that of the Northern Residents (inshore fish eating ecotype) to whom our focus shifts when they arrive in the area come mid-July. The Transients (Bigg's) are often in small groups, are quiet and move around in no particular pattern or routine. This can sometimes make them difficult to locate from day to day or even within an hour or two!
Pictured below are the T101's & T102
It's during these times that we turn our attention to all of the other stunning wildlife that can be found. Pacific White-Sided Dolphins are common and can often be seen in large groups. Their acrobatic and wake riding displays always leave a lasting impression. Humpback Whales, Dall's and Harbour Porpoises, Steller Sea Lions, Pacific Harbour Seals, Bald Eagles and several varieties of seabirds are all sighted regularly.
The Discovery Island region is also home to 6 sets of ocean rapids! From the infamous Seymour Narrows (which can reach speeds of nearly 30km/hr) just north of Campbell River to the Arran Rapids at the entrance to Bute Inlet, watching the mighty torrent of white water, whirlpools and huge diversity of wildlife is a unique experience you won’t find anywhere else in the world. On large incoming tides it’s possible to see hundreds of Bald Eagles diving to grab small fish that have been pushed to the surface by the strong current!
Don’t forget this is Canada! Even on a hot summer day it can be very cool on the water! The spacious, enclosed and heated cabins of our state of the art vessels ensure that you are always comfortable! Our boats also feature multiple viewing decks and WASHROOMS!!!
At Discovery Marine Safaris we are committed to sharing our knowledge and passion with everyone that visits this remarkable place that we call home. Our on board Marine Naturalists are some of the finest on the coast, continuously interacting with our guests and interpreting all that this diverse ecosystem has to behold. They also provide a spectacular presentation that is sure to inspire and move you! Our Captains have all spent most of their lives sailing the waters off BC’s coast. You won’t find more experienced, entertaining, or engaging mariners anywhere else.
A local bakery makes fresh baked goods that are delivered moments before departure! Fair trade organic, locally roasted coffee, an assortment of tea and filtered fresh water are included. We ask that you bring your own reusable water bottles and/or coffee mug in order to help us reduce our environmental impact!
The naturalist on board really made the experience outstanding. She had such enthusiasm and cool info!Shawn Stafford
Welcome to the marine world of Vancouver and Quadra Island! ;-) I do love to be on (and off!) board with these people. Competent, nice, lovely, experienced, and so in love of their marine life! I can't be more satisfied than this (and I have to be back for the Grizzly season! ;-) I was so satisfied that I did two safaris... and with both, I managed to see everything: whales, seals, sea lions, bald eagles...Amber was a wonderful host in both trips and it's always a pleasure to learn about marine wildlife - and conservation! - from her.Marco Bertoldi,