What We See:

Species

  • Common Dolphins by the hundreds to thousands

  • Bottlenose Dolphins

  • Pacific White-Sided Dolphins

  • Risso's Dolphins

  • Blue Whales

  • Killer Whales*

  • False Killer Whales*

  • Pilot Whales**

  • Sperm Whales**

  • Gray Whales

  • Humpback Whales

  • Fin Whales

  • Minke Whales

  • Bryde's Whales

  • Beaked Whales**

  • Sei Whales*

*Rare Species usually seen 5 times a year or less

** Exceptionally rare species encountered once every few years.

Seasonal Peaks:

  • Year RoundSouthern California has arguably the most dolphins of anywhere on earth. We have about a 95-98% chance of encountering dolphins on every trip.

  • Jan-March- Peak Gray Whale season with 20,000 Gray Whales migrating along the California Coast. 

  • March-May- Peak Humpback and Fin Whale months. Northbound Gray Whale migration. We also normally have at least one False Killer Whale sighting during this period. 

  • May-July- This has been the peak Blue Whale season in San Diego the past 4 years. Success rate mid-May through June was nearly 100% in 2019. In 2020 Blues didn't show up until July, so this varies by season.

  • July-Aug- Prime Blue Whales, with Fin, Humpback, and Bryde's Whales all possible

  • Sept-Dec- Prime Humpback Whales are October and November. Exotic species also more typical in the fall. Eastern Tropical Pacific Killer Whales are usually seen at least once or twice during this time frame. 

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