Thursday, November 22, 2012

A Day To Feast: A Thanksgiving Story

Above: Is it the Loch Ness Monster?

A Day To Feast: A Thanksgiving Story

by Janine Unsoeld

On Tuesday afternoon, I happened to be standing on the shoreline, steps away from the Moxlie Creek outfall pipe near East Bay Drive. Moments after speaking with Andy Haub, city of Olympia's public works planning and engineering manager on my cellphone about the Moxlie Creek wastewater discharge incident into Budd Inlet, I saw a deep wave approach my feet.

My first thought was that it was from the wake of a boat, but, looking up, there was no boat nearby. Having visited Loch Ness in Scotland as a teen, my next thought was that it was the Loch Ness Monster! The wave was huge! I took a picture of the wave coming to lap at my feet. Kind of a funny thing to do if you're about to be eaten by something big, but hey, I'm a photographer, what can I say?

My legs turned to Jello as the wave rolled toward me. I thought, this is very strange! All of a sudden, two large harbor seals pitched themselves out of the water and with expert precision, working as a team, corralled a massive salmon onto shore right in front of me. Stepping back, I took many pictures of the action. It appears there were two harbor seals and a pup involved.

The harbor seals feasted on a fine meal, making quick work of the salmon.

After much feasting, nearby seagulls got involved, even dive bombing the sometimes submerged seal and salmon, to steal a snack.  

Above: Hey! Where's my feast?
Alas, there were no leftovers, and everyone went away, the commotion over for now. It was a tremendous sight at close range that still makes my heart pound!