VANCOUVER — If there is one silver lining to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s the effect that it’s having on Mother Nature.
We’ve all heard about Venice’s waters, which in the absence of motorized boats and gondolas has returned to its sparkling blue colour, and China’s air pollution levels plummeting to record lows following the temporary shutdown of factories. Deer were also spotted roaming around Italy, and mountain goats recently took over a small seaside town in Wales.
Now we can add incredible whale sightings off the coast of Vancouver as yet another unexpected side effect of the ongoing pandemic and lockdown measures.
With most Vancouverites staying indoors, the whales have been seen happily swimming about, which North Vancouver councillor Jim Hanson says is the first time in 59 years that he’s spotted them so far up Indian Arm.
Apparently the natural world likes the economic slow down. Saw a pod of four Orca whales in Indian Arm yesterday. First time in my 59 years I have seen whales this far up the Arm. #northvan pic.twitter.com/WYoi6RrJcT
— Jim Hanson (@jimhanson_NV) March 28, 2020
The massive creatures were also seen exploring Vancouver’s float plane terminal, which on a normal day would be filled with loud seaplanes.
Shared by a friend: Whale spotted by the float plane terminal yesterday (usually it’s so busy with human activity , you would not see this) #MotherNature #Vancouver pic.twitter.com/foVWFVOabr
— Mary Pynenburg (@Womanwhovotes) March 29, 2020
And even in downtown Vancouver, where the kind of wildlife one usually sees are seagulls and other birds, a few eagle-eyed residents managed to catch some killer whales on camera, swimming in the middle of Vancouver Harbour.
Wow. 2 killer whales ???? swimming in Vancouver Harbour, right in front of where we live in Coal Harbour.
With Vancouver on lockdown, the harbour has become a much quieter & friendlier place for nature. pic.twitter.com/fMJBPSOQ91
— Spencer Chen (@spencerchen) March 28, 2020
It’s awesome to see these whales getting the chance to stretch their fins and reclaim their waters once more. Let’s try to enjoy it while it lasts!