T46 Pod Wows during Porpoise Hunt

We sure had a fantastic experience with the T46 pod in Puget Sound yesterday!  We watched the pod swimming at a slow and steady pace for a while as they spread out across the water looking for prey.  Suddenly T46E, a huge 17 year old male, came flying out of the water in the opposite direction from his family!  That chase was on, and the rest of the family swam in quickly to help!  It only took half a minute before we could see their target, a harbor porpoise, trying desperately to get away from them.  During the hunt I took photos of T46E taking a big “swing and a miss” at the porpoise with his pectoral fin (see the 3 photo sequence at the end).  During all of this action T46D, who often lags behind and seems to go by his own agenda, didn’t even seem interested at first until he swam over towards us and started breaching, perhaps in anticipation of his next meal!  We saw 6-7 breaches in all by this 20 year old!  As always, these photos are available for purchase at any time (just let me know in the comment tab at the end).

T46D back flip breach
T46D belly flop breach

T46D never ate with the rest of the family, but once they moved on from the meal he circled around and probably got to eat some of what they left behind for him.  As the rest of the T46 pod slowly swam southward, T46E decided to breach a couple of times and swam right over to a fishing boat to give them a thrill and a few tailslaps! 

T46E gets in on the breach action after the meal!

These next three photos show the sequence of T46E taking a “Swing and a Miss” at the porpoise!

Here is the porpoise next to T46E’s dorsal fin
T46E takes a swipe at the porpoise with his pectoral fin
T46E misses his mark!