In this July 31, 2015 file photo, an orca swims past a recreational boat sailing just offshore in the Salish Sea in the San Juan Islands. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

Calf born to endangered Pacific Northwest orcas

Center for Whale Research cautions survival rates are only about 50 per cent

  • Jan. 11, 2019 3:10 p.m.

There’s a new calf among the population of critically endangered killer whales that live in the waters between Washington state and Canada.

Ken Balcomb, founding director of the Center for Whale Research, told The Seattle Times that staff first saw the calf Friday at the eastern end of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

READ MORE: Orca’s ‘tour of grief’ over after carrying dead calf around for nearly 3 weeks

He said the youngster looks healthy, but survival rates for baby orcas are only about 50 per cent.

The whales have been starving amid a dearth of salmon. Vessel noise and pollution have complicated their plight. No calf born in the last three years has survived.

One whale drew international attention when she carried her dead calf on her head for 17 days last summer.

Two other orcas are known to be sick, and researchers fear they could die within months.

The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Haida Gwaii storm causes B.C. ferry delay

Skidegate to Prince Rupert route affected

Rainfall warning for Haida Gwaii

High winds also expected to hit the islands

Haida Gwaii eagles recovering in Ladner care facility

Treatment for the eagles is both costly and time intensive

Blaze consumes dwelling in Masset

The Masset Fire Department received the first call around 8 p.m.

B.C. seizes 1.5M grams contraband tobacco, down from 5.75M grams the year prior

The 2019-2020 seizures were a sharp drop compared to the 2018-2019 year,

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

B.C. Speaker tight-lipped about aide’s legislature security tour

B.C. Liberals question Alan Mullen’s drive across Canada, U.S.

B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

Larger operating areas seen as threat by cab companies

Okanagan bus driver assaulted for asking patron not to smoke

59-year-old in hospital with non-life threatening injuries

Two hiking families team up to extinguish fire in B.C. backcountry

Children and their parents worked for three hours to ensure safety of the popular hiking region

Vancouver man arrested after pregnant woman’s SUV stolen, then crashed

Police are recommending charges against a 22-year-old Vancouver man

Most Read