Whale researcher says orphan orca 'likely' seen off Vancouver Island at Friendly Cove | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source
Subscribe

Would you like to subscribe to our newsletter?

Current Conditions Partly Cloudy  13.8°C

Vernon News

Whale researcher says orphan orca 'likely' seen off Vancouver Island at Friendly Cove

A whale researcher says a lone young killer whale spotted surfacing Friday at Friendly Cove off the remote west coast of Vancouver Island is likely the orphan orca calf that was trapped in a Vancouver Island tidal lagoon more than two months ago. A two-year-old female orca calf, named kwiisahi?is, or Brave Little Hunter, by the Ehattesaht First Nation, is spotted at the Little Espinosa Inlet near Zeballos, B.C., Friday, April 19, 2024.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

VICTORIA - A whale researcher says a lone young killer whale spotted surfacing Friday at Friendly Cove off the remote west coast of Vancouver Island is likely the orphan orca calf that was trapped in a tidal lagoon near Zeballos, B.C., more than two months ago.

Jared Towers, executive director of Alert Bay's Bay Cetology, says today he can't be 100 per cent sure video he received confirms it's the female killer whale known as kwiisahi?is or Brave Little Hunter, but it's highly likely given the orca's behaviour and the area where it was seen.

He says Friendly Cove is located in Nootka Sound about 50 kilometres south of the lagoon at Little Espinosa Inlet where kwiisahi?is was trapped after her pregnant mother was stranded on a rocky beach at low tide last March and died.

After several unsuccessful attempts to capture and transport the young orca to the open ocean, she eventually followed a small boat to the lagoon entrance under the light of a full moon in late April before swimming to the ocean on her own.

Towers says the Friendly Cove killer whale exhibited similar behaviour in that it briefly approached a sailboat before swimming away.

The apparent appearance of kwiisahi?is comes about 24 hours after Bay Cetology issued a statement saying the young killer whale had not been seen since May 10 despite numerous documented sightings of members of her family.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 6, 2024.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2024
The Canadian Press

  • Popular penticton News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile