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

A pickleball debacle unfolds in Lake Country

Pickleball players and frustrated residents discuss the sport court

Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

Kelowna man found guilty of second-degree murder awaits sentencing

A Kelowna jury found Steven Randy Pirko guilty of the second-degree murder in June

Kelowna cab driver charged with sexual assault

RCMP received a report May 28 alleging a taxi passenger had been sexually assaulted by a cab driver

Trial delayed for West Kelowna man charged with murdering his wife

Kevin Costin’s trial is on hold until the Crown and defence work out a few kinks

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

Backhoe ‘burned to a crisp’ in South Okanagan

South Okanagan fire chief said the situation could have been a lot worse

Air ambulance called to second collision on Highway 1 west of Salmon Arm

Emergency crews respond to motor-vehicle collision near Second Nations Road intersection

Crash closes Highway 1 near Tappen

The collision happened about 3:30 p.m. by James Road

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Controversial anti-abortion film to be screened in the South Okanagan

Unplanned will be shown at the Penticton Landmark theatre

Okanagan-based pop star Andrew Allen is back with a new band

Singer-songwriter Andrew Allen is bringing his new band home for a concert this Friday

Most Read