Orca pod spotted back off Newport Beach with rare white calf

Yesterday morning (Monday, April 29) Davey’s Locker & Newport Landing from Newport Beach spotted an incredibly rare pod of killer whales or orca off the coast. Included in the sighting was a rare glimpse of a white killer whale calf named Frosty.

According to Jessica Rodriguez, the education & communications manager for Newport Landing & Davey’s Locker Whale Watching, “Shockingly, (the pod) returned, nearly a year to the day in Newport since we’ve seen them last, on April 23, 2023.

Click on photo for a larger image

Photos by Delaney Trowbridge @NewportCoastalAdventure & @NewportWhales

Whale watching excursion comes across rare pod of Orcas or Killer Whales, with ‘Frosty’ swimming amongst them

“Our whale watching boat – the Catallac – was the first to spot the famous killer whale pod about nine miles off the coast of Newport Beach this morning during one of our morning whale watching cruises.”

According to Captain Dani on the Catallac, “We got extremely lucky, and were able to relocate a pod of at least five to seven orcas, one of which was a 4-year-old calf named Frosty after its milky white appearance. We were watching a pair of giant fin whales, and all of a sudden, she saw puffs in the distance, which were definitely not dolphin. Turns out it was KILLER WHALES!”

Frosty is a very unique killer whale that has some sort of genetic condition that has made his pigment a much lighter color than that of normal killer whales.

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Frosty making an appearance to onlookers

The killer whales appeared to be feeding on “a beach-ball sized chuck of unknown animal (likely a dolphin or small whale), and were passing it back and forth.

This particular pod has been sighted as far north as British Columbia, and their last reported sighting was in Morro Bay in October 2022, before being seen a year ago off Newport Beach.

Newport Landing, Davey’s Locker & Newport Coastal Adventure operate daily whale watching tours out of Newport Harbor.


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