Great news to bring us into the New Year: Southern resident J-pod orca J16 has a new calf!
The first photo of the calf, J50:
More photos of the new calf can be found on the Center for Whale Research homepage at www.whaleresearch.com.
A beautiful, free downloadable 2015 calendar from Russian Orcas:
"We prepared a special present for you for this Christmas and New Year - the calendar with photos of orcas we study and 12 facts about orcas and our project. Here it is
You can download and print it for free. And we wish it brings you inspiration the whole year around.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
With kind regards,
A rare and spectacular sighting of the elusive Type D Antarctic orca!
From Sea Shepherd Global:
RARE SIGHTING! Yesterday, while maintaining pursuit of the "Thunder", the crew of The MV Bob Barker was visited by a pod of the very rare, very playful Orcas.
First identified in 1955 after a stranding in New Zealand, this species known as ‘‘Type D” Killer whales was not seen again for almost 50 years! Still today, there remain only a handful of sightings.
The pod of about 12, which included a small juvenile and large male, stayed with the Bob Barker for almost 1 hour, surfing the 6-metre swell.
As the crew of the The MV Sam Simon enters its 3rd day of retrieving the illegal gillnet left behind by the Thunder, this special moment is a poignant reminder of the delicate beauty of Antarctica, and why it’s so important that we continue to Defend * Conserve * Protect this last, great wilderness.
A fantastic blog written by Clare McEnally about the orca and humpback whales of Norway:
An update from the Free Morgan Foundation:
"2014 vs 2015 for Morgan. We apologise for the lack of postings about Morgan and the work that we are doing for her. We haven't given up on her and continue to strive to get her out of Loro Parque. Because we assume that the cetacean captivity industry are monitoring this page we have been keeping a low profile with the progress that we have made (and yes, there is progress). We hope that 2015 will bring about some much needed changes for Morgan. Please continue to spread the word about her plight and the sad issues that all captive orca have to face on a daily basis. - from the Free Morgan Foundation team."
Can SeaWorld send their orca to China? The short answer is yes (and they have already transferred four of their orca to Spain). This informative article by Candace Calloway Whiting explains more:
Ten Years After Their Endangered Species Act listing, Southern Resident Orca Population Numbers Are Still Falling
2015 will mark the tenth year of the Southern resident orca population being listed under the Endangered Species Act, warranting protection from the U.S. government. However, the population's numbers are still falling and with the recent death of a pregnant female, alarm bells are ringing!
"On top of the animal welfare issues, your orca shows...What if everyone could be an orca (virtually) rather than watch one in a concrete tank?" An open letter to SeaWorld's new CEO, by Kimberly Ventre.
Underwater footage of orca off the coast of western Australia:
Preliminary necropsy report for Southern resident orca J32, known as Rhapsody.