New York Times: ‘Orcas of the Pacific Northwest Are Starving and Disappearing’

  • Tue Jul 10th, 2018 12:21pm
  • News

The status of the endangered Southern resident killer whale population has gained national attention, including a detailed article by The New York Times:

SEATTLE — For the last three years, not one calf has been born to the dwindling pods of black-and-white killer whales spouting geysers of mist off the coast in the Pacific Northwest.

Normally four or five calves would be born each year among this fairly unique urban population of whales — pods named J, K and L. But most recently, the number of orcas here has dwindled to just 75, a 30-year-low in what seems to be an inexorable, perplexing decline.

Listed as endangered since 2005, the orcas are essentially starving, as their primary prey, the Chinook, or king salmon, are dying off. Just last month, another one of the Southern Resident killer whales — one nicknamed “Crewser” that hadn’t been seen since last November — was presumed dead by the Center for Whale Research.

To read the rest of this article, visit https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/09/science/orcas-whales-endangered.html.