News Room

Another female calf raises hopes for endangered orca population

Apr 15. 16

Survival of 2 female calves particularly important for endangered southern resident population

By Mike Laanela, CBC News

Orca researchers have confirmed that one more calf born in the endangered southern resident population is a female.

Photographs taken earlier this week confirmed the calf J53 is a female, according to the Centre for Whale Research in Washington state.

Only one other of the eight surviving calves in the so-called "orca baby boom" — J50 —is a confirmed female. Five others are male, while the sex of one, L123, remains undetermined.

Researchers say the survival of the two female calves is particularly important because they will help repopulate the endangered population of orcas. About 50 per cent of orca calves die before reaching maturity, according to experts.

"We are delighted to have another young female in the population.  This is great news for the southern residents," said a statement from the Centre for Whale Research.

There are about 80 animals in the southern resident population of orcas that spend their summers in the waters around the south end of Vancouver Island.

3rd female calf confirmed dead

Meanwhile, Fisheries and Oceans Canada has also confirmed a dead killer whale calf found near Sooke on Southern Vancouver Island on March 23 was a very young female from the same population.

The calf was identified by the Vancouver Aquarium genetics team as a southern resident, but had not yet been categorized because of its young age.

Read the original story here

Latest News

Biologically diverse BC to benefit from pledge for endangered-species law

Jul 25. 17

As Canada’s “most biologically rich province,” B.C. stands to benefit hugely from a long-awaited provincial government commitment to create a species-at-risk law, a senior official with the David Suzuki Foundation said Tuesday.

Keep Reading...

BC Premier John Horgan delivers mandate duties to cabinet ministers

Jul 24. 17

Environment Minister George Heyman’s mandate letter stated that he has been tasked with enacting an endangered species law and working to defend British Columbia’s interests in the face of the expansion of the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

Keep Reading...

Recent Press Releases

Govt Documents Reveal Huge Support For South Okanagan National Park

Sep 08. 16

BC government documents obtained by the Wilderness Committee reveal huge public support for a South Okanagan National Park

Keep Reading...

Environmental groups head to court over pollinator-killing pesticides

Jul 06. 16

TORONTO — Environmental groups are headed to court in a bid to protect pollinators from a harmful class of pesticides. Neonicotinoid pesticides have been linked to mass bee die-offs and declining pollinator populations.

Keep Reading...

Media By Month