Rub a rub a rub

Yesterday, the group of orcas (A11s with Springer, A36s with A12, A8s) that had been far to the east in Johnstone Strait for several days (probably fishing or looking for fish) returned to western Johnstone Strait.  They arrived at the eastern boundary of the Reserve around 8am, went in for a rub at the Main […]

Ties that bind

Several “A” clan matrilines in Gordon Channel, near Port Hardy, July 11, 2010.  Photo by Donna Mackay. Basic facts about orca society, and the glue that holds it together, have been known since the 1970s, when the “photo-ID” work of Mike Bigg and Ian McAskie, & their collaborators, revealed that “resident” fish eating orcas live in […]

Gone fishing

It seems that the groups who’ve arrived so far (A36s with A12, A8s, A11s) have been finding it easier to be in Nodales Channel, in the far eastern reaches of Johnstone Strait, than in our immediate vicinity.  This is a pattern we’ve seen frequently in the last few years, and think it reflects the general […]

New arrivals

Yesterday, early in the afternoon, came the exciting news that “incoming” orcas were on their way, heading from Lizard Point towards Donegal Head on Malcolm Island.  They chose to enter Johnstone Strait via Weynton Pass, and were in two groups. There was some initial speculation as to who was there, but once DFO’s Jared Towers […]

A summer begins

This afternoon, after long hours of waiting following an early morning phone call with the news, the first resident orcas of the 2010 summer “season” came into Blackney Pass and made their way towards Johnstone Strait.  They were the “A36” brothers, A37 (Plumper)  and A46 (Kaikash), now sadly without their older bother A32 (Cracroft). They […]

IWC 62 wrap-up: a bullet dodged

This year’s 62nd meeting of the International Whaling Commission, held in Agadir Morocco, will go down as a failed attempt to restart legally sanctioned commercial whaling.  The attempt occurred under the banner of saving some whales’ lives, and bringing some of the worst aspects of present-day whaling under IWC control.  Had the “deal” been agreed […]