Categories: Home2News

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

Researchers say an endangered orca’s “tour of grief” is over after she spent nearly three weeks towing her dead calf around the Pacific Ocean.

The Center for Whale Research says the killer whale, known as J35, was spotted without her baby while she “vigorously chased a school of salmon” for about a kilometre over the weekend.

The centre says J35 appears to be in good health based on telephoto images, in spite of concerns that she may not be able to forage for food while carrying around the carcass.

It says there had been reports “from brief sightings by whale-watchers” two days ago of J35 without her calf in the Georgia Strait near Vancouver.

The centre says the carcass likely sank to the bottom of the Salish Sea, and researchers may not get a chance to perform a necropsy.

J35 was spotted by Fisheries and Oceans Canada while they were searching for another of the 75 southern resident killer whales, labelled an endangered species in both Canada and the United States.

Her calf was born and died on July 24, and researchers say she towed it around for more than 1,500 kilometres.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

The Canadian Press

Recent Posts

Tornado touches down in Ottawa and Gatineau, Que.

Environment Canada says cars and homes have been damaged by severe thunderstorms and high wind gusts

6 hours ago

B.C. premier apologizes for removal of 1950s totem pole at Canada-U.S. border

First Nations say pole was raised at Peace Arch but removed to make way for tourism centre

6 hours ago

Low risk associated with case of pneumococcal disease in the South Okanagan

No identified risk to the public from recent case of pneumococcal disease with associated meningitis

7 hours ago

CUTENESS OVERLOAD: 2 sea otters hold hands at the Vancouver Aquarium

Holding hands is a common – and adorable – way for otters to stay safe in the water

8 hours ago

RCMP confirm death of missing BC teen Jessica Patrick

No details on cause were given. Case is under criminal investigation and police are asking for tips.

8 hours ago

Yukon man facing new attempted murder charge in B.C. exploding mail case

Leon Nepper, 73, is now facing one charge each of aggravated assault and attempted murder

8 hours ago