New calf reportedly born in endangered orca pod

June 1, 2019

SEATTLE (AP) — A Canadian whale researcher is reporting that a new calf has been born to the critically endangered southern resident orcas that live between Washington state and Canada.

The Seattle Times reports John Forde was out on the water Thursday near Tofino, British Columbia, when he spotted a baby alongside its mother, J31.

Forde owns a whale-watch company, but was out on his research permit doing photo identification when he saw the baby.

This is the second calf born to the southern residents since January, good news for a population that with the new calf numbers 76 whales.

Forde posted photos of the calf on his company’s blog .

The last new calf, L124, was born to southern resident orca L77 and is still alive.

Orca calves face a perilous first year, with only about 50% surviving.

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