Back in August we brought news of a petition filed by property developers, farmers and commercial fisheries asking the U.S. government to delist Pacific Northwest Southern resident orca from the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Sadly, today, we bring news that the petition has been accepted by NOAA (National Oceanic & Atmospheric Association) and the listing of the small Southern resident population under the ESA will be reviewed.
Read comments on the petition from Orca Network's Howard Garrett:
Journalist Tim Zimmermann covers the story: http://timzimmermann.com/2012/11/27/california-farmers-vs-souther-resident-killer-whales-and-salmon/
For more information and links, please read Candace Whiting's article:
Why transients should be Bigg's killer whales, in honour of the founding father of modern orca research and the man who first identified them.
"If whale expert John K.B. Ford has his way, school children one day will study a kind of North Pacific killer whale that preys on warm-blooded creatures...
"[John] Ford and colleagues from Alaska to California want transient killer whales to be declared their own species, and they want them to have a new name: Bigg's killer whales, in honor of Michael Bigg, the researcher whose observations off British Columbia and Washington state led to the identification of transients and whose mentoring inspired a generation of researchers still uncovering the mysteries of the animal at the top of the marine food chain."
Candace Whiting comments on the video of New Zealand orca giving a dog and a diver a fright the other day in Matheson Bay, New Zealand. It is likely the orca were simply curious and meant no harm - humans (and dogs) aren't on their menu!
You can watch the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=C8V97_DKfhw
Why saving salmon will help save orca - Orca Network summarise the article:
• Southern resident orcas have depended on Snake River Chinook salmon for thousands of years.
• Removing the lower Snake River dams would provide the greatest chance for recovery for Snake River sockeye and Chinook, and all endangered salmon and steelhead in the Snake River basin.
• It's way too expensive to try to save salmon without removing the dams. We need to come together as a region to pursue recovery programs that work – and will restore abundant, self-sustaining salmon and steelhead populations.
For the full article, please visit: http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2019705443_captivefish18m.html
Watch these clips of Crozet Island orca from the Animal Planet's Wild Kingdom special, "A Man Among Orcas" (from Filmmaker David Reichert, exploring the relationships between the orca of the Crozet Islands and their prey).
WITHDRAWN: Application to Build Tidal Turbines in Critical Habitat for Threatened Northern Resident Orca
Last week we looked at an application to build tidal turbines in critical Northern resident orca habitat (you can read the news piece here).
Today we are delighted to announce that the application has been withdrawn. A big congratulations and thank you to OrcaLab who, along with everyone who commented on the application, were instrumental in making this happen.
For the full story, visit the OrcaLab blog:
And The Marine Detective's latest blog entry:
Captive orca have been all over the news the last two years, since the death of SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau by Icelandic captive Tilikum.
Orca Aware have published a new blog report (author, anon.) which explores captivity and the educational value of displaying orca in marine entertainment facilities.
The report includes a literature search for killer whale studies published by marine entertainment giant SeaWorld. The document for the search result listings can be downloaded here:
Result Listings from Google Scholar SeaWorld Orca Literature Search.
It also includes quotes from a 2006 email correspondence with the SeaWorld "Ask Shamu Team". The full email can be read here:
Email Correspondence, SeaWorld Ask Shamu Team (2006).
You can now read "Captive Orca: Behind the Scenes or Behind Bars?"