Beautiful footage of orca in "A Village of Killer Whales," a Film by Michael Harris / Narrated by Tom Skerritt.
Orca sighted in waters of eastern Hokkaido's Shiretoko region, Japan. Little is known about orca found in waters off the Japanese coast - what a wonderful sight!
What are thought to have been approximately 25 offshore orca were sighted in Kachemak Bay, Alaska. Offshore orca migrate between California and Alaska. For more information, please read: http://homernews.com/homer-news/2013-05-22/offshore-orcas-surprise-whale-researcher
Many thanks to Jenny van Twillert for sharing this article with us!
The Orca Research Trust attended the stranding of orca NZ123, known as "Koru" on Monday 20th May. He became stuck on the sandbank in the Kaipara Harbour, New Zealand. Read more about the stranding and Koru on the Orca Research Trust Facebook page.
Via Orca Research Trust:
ORCA “Koru” STRANDING
The adult male orca, known as Koru (NZ123) had a close encounter with the Orca Research Trust team on Monday (20 May 2013), when he became stuck on a sandbank in the Kaipara Harbour. Alerted by the Kaipara Coastguard, the ORT team set off and arrived to find Koru being carefully attended by the fishermen who had first found him. Koru remained calm, whilst he was kept wet, awaiting the returning tide. Our measurements showed that Koru was 6.45 m long – not large compared to the largest male orca measured (just over 9 m), but no small boy either and certainly well within the average size range.
Koru gets his name because the tip of his fin curls over, so it looks like an unfurling fern frond, often called a koru in Māori. The koru spiral shape symbolizes new life, growth, strength and peace. Koru the orca had a new lease on life when he got off the sandbank and headed out of the harbour, accompanied by an adult female orca, known as Nicky. Along with Nicky’s most recent calf, they headed towards the harbour entrance as the sun was setting. We are very interested to hear of any sightings of orca along the New Zealand coastline as we want to monitor’s Koru’s progress. Please call 0800 SEE ORCA to help us keep an eye on him and the other orca. Thanks!
Gaia L78 & mum Grace L2 (Photo: Melisa Pinnow)
Check out Melisa Pinnow's Orca Encounters blog where she writes about her experiences with the Southern resident orca off the coast of the San Juan Island, including some fantastic photos she has taken!
Melisa wrote for Orca Aware in Sept 2012 - have a read of her blog entry here
Recently we shared a video of an orca off the coast of Port Elizabeth, South Africa with a missing pectoral and dorsal fin. Here is an article about how the orca's family help it to survive, with stunning photography (copyright Rainer Schimpf / Barcroft Media).
Photographer Rainer says, "Incapable of fast hunting and ambushing prey it has to be dependent on the pod which, one assumes, looks after it very well." The pod consists of five females and a large male.
David Kirby (author of 'Death at SeaWorld') has taken a look at WHY orcas may do this instead of choosing to abandon their disabled mates.
A permanently disabled orca known as Stumpy has been cared for by his pod mates for years - have a read of this article by Candace Calloway Whiting.
"The Center for Whale Research announced yesterday that all of the Southern Resident J pod whales had returned safe and sound to the San Juan Island region of Washington. The oldest member of the pod is J2, affectionately named Granny." - Granny is over 100 years old!
Marine wildlife charity Sea Watch is to carry out a survey for orcas and other cetaceans off the Caithness coast, in the sea between Caithness and Orkney in Scotland. The survey will take place in May, a "peak time to see orcas". We can't wait to see what they find!