L114 only lived 4 months. Her death is unknown.
L102 was born in early November, 2002 and only lived about a month.
L102’s mother was Marina (L47). Marina’s previous calf (L99) was born in 2000 and listed as missing and presumed dead in 2001. L102 had a sister born in 1990 and another sibling (gender unknown) born in 1995. They are apparently healthy and still members of L-Pod.
The mortality rate for orcas is up to 50% in the first year of life. High levels of contaminants (DDT, PCBs and PBDEs) are passed from mothers to their offspring via breast milk. Transient Orcas have up to 15 times the contaminant load of local seals, as they accumulate toxins from their marine mammal prey. Resident Orcas eat salmon, which don’t contain as many toxins. Orca calves are highly sensitive to these toxic contaminants. To help save orcas from extinction, we have to eliminate the use and discharge of these pollutants into waterways worldwide.
February 21, 2010. L114 born to L77. L114 was first seen and photographed with L77 near Cordova Bay, Vancouver Island BC.
Ellifrit said he took some 300 photos of the baby whale.
“I wouldn’t yet call it a boom, but it’s exciting because every new calf born is an indication that this endangered population may be on the road to recovery,” says Lynne Barre, marine-mammal specialist with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries.
The newest baby whale still has fetal folds. Barre says having fetal folds means that while the baby was inside the mom, it was so big that its tail was folded.
A baby orca pops out at about 440 pounds and eight feet in length, Barre says.
The gestation period is 17 months, so, understandably, females give birth only every four or five years, the researcher says.
“It takes a considerable amount of maternal investment to have the pregnancy and to nurse the calf,” Barre says. “It takes time to get back into condition.”
Orcas are especially threatened by food shortages, chemical pollution, and increasing noise in the ocean.
The mortality rate for orcas is up to 50% in the first year of life.
High levels of contaminants are passed from mothers to their offspring via breast milk. Orca calves are highly sensitive to these toxic contaminants. To help save orcas from extinction, we have to eliminate the use and discharge of these pollutants into waterways worldwide.
The white areas appear
peachy orange in colour; they’re not born black and white.
Scientists theorize that this is because calves are not born with a thick layer of blubber, therefore blood vessels near the surface of the skin result in this colour pattern. Most calves become black and white within their first year.
June 2010 L114 has not been seen with its mother in June and is presumed to have died.
Makers of the flag and Citizen Scientists:
Janet Fletcher & Art Van Vliet