Multiple pregnancies among dwindling Southern Resident orca pod in Puget Sound

KING 5

As many as three Southern Resident killer whales are pregnant within the local J-pod, according to researchers.

Because of the pregnancies, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, NOAA Fisheries and their partners are asking recreational boaters to give the orcas extra space. Quieter waters, according to researchers, are important as orcas in the finals months of gestation increase their food consumption.

“We’ve got many people looking at the science to understand where we can continue to improve the odds for this population,” said Kelly Susewind, WDFW director. “Now that we’ve learned of multiple pregnancies among the Southern Residents and the impact that boats can have on new mothers, we really need everyone to follow “Be Whale Wise” regulations in support of these endangered whales’ survival.”

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