A gray whale was spotted near the Courtenay Airpark Wednesday morning, delighting onlookers. Photo by Erin Haluschak

A gray whale was spotted near the Courtenay Airpark Wednesday morning, delighting onlookers. Photo by Erin Haluschak

Whale appears to have moved on

The lone gray whale that was spotted in the Courtenay River on Wednesday, Dec. 19 appears to have moved on, according to Lifeforce Ocean Friends.

Since the whale was off the Courtenay Airpark, the group says it was a dangerous situation that posed a public safety hazard to the whale and the public.

In view of the possibility of a seaplane collision, Lifeforce recommended to DFO that air flights should be shut down, and/or whale locations must be determined through DFO contact prior to landings and takeoffs.

If the whale had continued to remain in the area, Lifeforce urged DFO to use gray whale playbacks to attract him/her out of the area. Lifeforce developed this method 15 years ago to attract orcas away from oil spills. It was successful in attracting the lone orca out of Comox Harbour this summer by DFO.

Watch the “Lone Gray Whale” video to see the whale and to learn about safety for whales and people.