Rausu: Orca and...

目的は、、、、シャチを見ること!!! ず~っと見たいみたいと思いつつ、、見れずにいた動物です。 去年まで全然知らなかったのですが、、知床半島と国後島に挟まれている根室海峡ではシャチを含め鯨類が結構な確立で見られるのです。そんな訳で去年の夏から4回ほど訪れていたのでした。(シャチだけが目的と言うわけではないですが)

Last weekend, I had a short trip to Rausu in Shiretoko peninsula. Main purpose is to see Orca which I have dreamed to see them in nature for a long time!! Last year, I knew that many whales can be seen in Nemuro Channel which locates between Shiretoko peninsula and Kunashiri island. That is one of the reason why I have been there for 4 times since last summer.

And, I finally succeeded to see wild Orca!!!

The group were shy and did not play with us, but I could see them in very short distance. How wonderful!!

Group of Orca and background is Kunashiri island. Since they live with family, they usually seen in group.

愛想の良いグループも結構多いらしく、、一度見つけるとシャチの方からず~っと船に併走して泳いでくれたり、、ジャンプしてくれたりするとの事でした。数日前もそんな群れに遭遇したそうで、、「また来ないとあかんな~」と早くも新たな課題を見つけました (^^;
I heard that there are many friendly groups. If we found such group, they keep on swimming along with ship for a long time, and they sometimes jump. So I came to have another wish to see friendly Orca!

土曜日(7/2)は海もベタ凪、おまけに青空が広がり、、更にシャチ以外にも動物も沢山!!で祭り状態でした♪ こちらはミンククジラ。
On Saturday (Jul 2), see was calm with blue sky and with plenty kind of animals other than Orca.
For example, minke whale.

This whale was more friendly than the one I saw last year. Since this whale frequently showed its back, I could take some photos. But, to say honestly, I was so satisfied to see and take photo of Orca, that I did not concentrate so much to take photo at this time ;-)

その他、ツチクジラを見かけたり、、更にはオットセイの赤ちゃんまで見てしまいました! この時はシャチがいる現場に急行していた時だったので、証拠写真を数枚撮っただけでしたが、、可愛い~~かったです♪  そうそう、、、野生のキタオットセイを見たのはこの時が初めてでした (^^;
In addition, I saw Baird's Beaked Whale and young Northern Fur seal!! Since the ship hurried to the place where Orca was seen, I took only a few photos. He (or she?) was very cute in deed. Also this was my first encounter with Northern Fur seal.

Also I saw several Dall's porpoise. Since their body color looks like Orca, I wanted to take good shot of them. However, they swam fast and did not show their body on the surface, it was very hard to take photo.

When I found they show their back and tried to find them in Camera's finder, it was too late (i.e. their body is already under the water.)

This is the view from see surface. You can find head in the right hand side of the photo.

There were a lot of see birds. Below is Northern Fulmar. I could see white colored morph too.

And some short-tailed Shearwater which enormous number of them visit Nemuro channel in the spring.

そして、、ウトウの姿も。。。ちょっと遠いですね (^^; でも数はそこそこいたようです
And Rhinoceros Auklet. I could not see it in short distance, but found some.

When I took a boat, fog covered Rausu town and sea.

Then fog was getting cleared on and on,,,

知床連山も綺麗に拝む事ができました♪ 夏場の羅臼は霧が発生しがちで気温もあまり上がらないので、、羅臼から知床連山を見れてちょっと得した気分でした
Then, I could see Shiretoko ranges. I felt somehow lucky, since this side of peninsula often have fog in the summer and it makes temperature always lower than other side.

Cliff in the west coast of Kunashiri island.

Here is a view of Shiretoko peninsula from ship.


After taking a boat, I drove along with coast to search for brown bear. (but, could not find them)

On Sunday, I took a boat again to expect more whales. such as Orca, sperm whale. But there were less animals on this day..


I saw some Dall's porpoise. But number was not so much as Saturday.. Since they are wild animals, it was also expected (but I felt little bit disappointed..)
On the other hand, I saw Fork-tailed storm-petrel which I did not see in Saturday. So it seemed some change was made to see.

Short-tailed Shearwater I saw on Sunday.

Northern Fulmar on Sunday.

Then I went to Memanbetsu airport to take a flight to Shin-chitose. When I crossed a mountain pass (Shiretoko pass), I found a  Ezo red fox on the road.

What does he (she?) have in the mouse??

After relaxing on the road, the fox walked to somewhere.

Here is a view of Shiretoko pass on Sunday. Even though it is fogy in Rausu, weather of another side of Shiretoko peninsula beyond the pass often be fine.

こちらはウトロから女満別に向かう途中で立ち寄ったオシンコシンの滝。去年は滝近くの駐車場が工事中で立ち寄れなかったので、急いでいたものの寄り道してしまいました♪ いや~想像以上に大きな滝でした!
Here is Oshinkoshin waterfall which I saw on the way to Memanbetsu airport. It was much bigger waterfall than I expected.

と言うわけで、、駆け足だったものの念願のシャチをついに見ることが出来て充実した週末旅行となりました♪ 因みに・・・事情により今回はシマフクロウを見ることが出来ませんでした。

The trip was very short, but I could see Orca and it was very good. Since I could not see Blakiston's fish owl, I want to see them in the next trip!

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