When it comes to the Southern Resident Killer Whales (SRKW) a year has made all the difference in the world. Last year at this time, we were all celebrating a remarkable baby boom, with 8 new orca calves over the previous 12 months & another new baby was added in January 2016, for a total of 9.
However, if 2015 was considered the baby boom year, then 2016 was the exact opposite with a total of 6 orca deaths recorded during the calendar year. Then the announcement on January 2, 2017 of J2 Granny’s presumed death as of December 31, 2016. J2 Granny was last seen by the Center for Whale Research on October 12, 2016.
In 2016 we saw the loss of L95, J55, J14, J28, J54, & J34
J14 Samish – left with daughters J37 & J40
J28 Polaris and then her baby son J54 Dipper.
J34 Doublestuf with mom J22
“The SRKW population is now estimated to be 78 as of 31 December 2016, and J pod contains only 24 individuals plus the wandering L87. To whom will he attach now? Who will lead the pod into the future? Is there a future without food? What will the human leaders do?” Ken Balcomb – Center for Whale Research
We are now racing the extinction of the SRKW’s – What it is going to take…
- Heightened awareness and continued education
- Sustainable fisheries and healthy wild Pacific Salmon stocks
- Continued research into understanding where the whales go in the winter & what they do
- Improved technologies for boating
- Continued education for younger generations-the next group of Salish Sea ambassadors!!
- Ongoing efforts to foster & promote ethical boating etiquette amongst all user groups: fishing – both private and commercial, kayaking, sailing, seaplanes, cruise ships, freighters, ferries, etc.
What can you DO to help:
- Let Prime Minister Justin Trudeau know what his approval of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion means for the endangered SRKW’s – say no to the Kinder Morgan pipeline and say yes to saving Orca’s
- Please visit the David Suzuki Foundation – find your MP and send a message to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Catherine McKenna (Minister of Environment and Climate Change) & Jim Carr (Minister of Natural Resources)
Become a Member of the Center for Whale Research – follow them on Facebook & Twitter
Adopt a Whale – check out The Whale Museum for more information
Follow Dam Sense on Facebook and check out their website damsense.org
Tweet to help save the SRKW’s and tear down those dams
Read the following articles to learn more:
The Orcas are Starving by David Niewert Breach dams, or its game over for salmon by Jim Waddell