Chester, the three-year-old false killer whale, who died last Friday.

False killer whale’s death linked to bacterial infection

Vancouver Aquarium releases statement on preliminary results from a necropsy on Chester

The Vancouver Aquarium says preliminary results from a necropsy show a false killer whale that died at the facility last Friday had a bacterial infection.

An email statement from the aquarium says it appears Chester, the three-year-old false killer whale, died of erysipelas, an illness veterinarian Dr. Martin Haulena says has resulted in the deaths of wild cetaceans and those in human care.

Haulena says it is the first known case of the disease at the aquarium.

Because it is infectious, Haulena says Helen, a Pacific white sided dolphin who shared a pool with Chester, is being treated with antibiotics.

Chester was brought to the aquarium when he was just a few weeks old, after being found stranded on a Vancouver Island beach in July 2014.

The aquarium has said the false killer whale, a member of the dolphin family, remained a “health challenged animal” throughout his life.

Chester’s death leaves Helen as the aquarium’s only remaining cetacean, and the statement says options to find a companion for her are limited by a Vancouver Park Board bylaw banning the acquisition of new whales, dolphins or porpoises.

The ban was imposed in May, months after two beluga whales died nine days apart from what officials said was a mysterious illness.

In June, a nine-year-old rescued harbour porpoise named Daisy also died. The aquarium said at the time that preliminary necropsy results showed the animal had pulmonary disease.

The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Family key to 60 years of marriage for Vernon couple

Syd and Emily Smith were married July 16, 1960, at the young ages of 18 and 19

AlleyCATS Okanagan: Pet of the week

Add a little Spritz and Cider to your summer

Lake Country beachgoers reminded to maintain distance amid COVID-19

Signage, park rangers, park patrol students in place to monitor busy beaches in Central Okanagan

Rare comet NEOWISE and aurora lights captured in Okanagan

The image was captured over Big Horn Lake near Kelowna with a Pixel 4XL android phone

Vernon Search and Rescue aids injured rail trail cyclist

Group’s Utility Terrain Vehicle proving to be a valuable asset on the popular trail

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

‘Resistance’ from Interior Health puts races in Penticton on hold

It’s unknown if races planned for this weekend at the Penticton Speedway will take place

Fundraiser kick-started for Vernon woman battling tongue cancer

Woman’s four-year-old twins are the driving force behind her fight

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Oliver Town Hall reopens to public as COVID-19 test comes back negative

Town Hall was closed briefly as a staff member showed multiple COVID-19 symptoms

RCMP to investigate hate-motivated vandalism in Summerland

Swastikas and other graffiti spray painted on house and at bandshell

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Vancouver Island RCMP respond to reports of man masturbating on bus

52-year-old man charged with committing an indecent act in a public place

Most Read