Orca whales, also referred to as killer whales, are some of the ocean’s most lively whale species, making them an absolute delight to see on whale watching excursions. They are incredibly social sea creatures that travel in groups (or “pods”) consisting of up to a few dozen other orcas and work together to hunt and catch prey including fish, squid birds, sea turtles, octopuses, seals, or other smaller marine mammals. Killer whales can grow to up to 32 feet in length and weigh up to 12,000 lbs. Their massive size and strength make them incredibly fast, allowing them to reach speeds of up to 35 mph and jump all the way out of water to catch certain prey.
Witnessing this whale species on tour can be quite a treat! To get the best opportunity to see an orca whale or pod of orca whales on a whale watching tour, here’s some important information on killer whale season that will help.
Although the main attraction for whale watching on the California coast is the great grey whale migration from Alaska to Baja Mexico, there is still opportunity to see many other different types of whales sporadically throughout the year. Although killer whales have a decent population, this species in particular can be a bit more challenging to pinpoint, because they are more diversely spread out geographically. With that being said, the best time to see killer whales in California is typically during the spring, between the months of February and May.
The location of killer whales can be more difficult to pinpoint, because they are usually more spread out in the water and live in very diverse waters. For instance, they can be found in water temperatures ranging from 32 degrees to tropical temperatures all over the world!
On the West Coast, however, there are a few locations in particular we recommend for the best chance to spot orca whales. These locations include Long Beach, Monterey Bay, and San Diego. Historically, these Cali coasts have been recorded as seeing a denser killer whale population, particularly during feeding times when their prey is also populous.
For more information on killer whale season, contact us at Harbor Breeze. For decades, we have been Long Beach and Los Angeles’ top trusted whale watching company, providing exceptional tours and educational commentary to enhance the whale watching experience. Contact us today for ticket information for an exciting whale watching experience that the entire family will remember for a lifetime. All aboard!