Killer whale J50 is shown off the coast of Washington State in this August 12, 2018 handout photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - NOAA Fisheries, Katy Foster)

Sickly southern resident killer whale ‘J50’ spotted alive

Researchers have been watching the ailing killer whale for weeks.

An American whale research organization says an ailing killer whale has been found alive just hours after it was announced the young orca had been separated from her family pod.

In a Facebook post Monday, the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbour, Wash., says the female Southern Resident killer whale known as J50 was found mid-morning, and the centre’s researchers were in the water with the animal.

Michael Millstein of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said in a statement earlier in the day that J50 wasn’t seen with her pod when a group of biologists was studying them Sunday.

Millstein added that Fisheries and Oceans Canada saw J50 lagging roughly one kilometre behind her mother and brother, who were nearly three nautical miles behind the rest of the J Pod when last sighted on August 30.

He said J50 had lost a considerable amount of weight over the past several months and marine biologists and veterinarians from both sides of the border were working to stabilize the orca.

The three-and-a-half-year-old whale is one of only 75 Southern Resident killer whales that continue to travel the Pacific waters between British Columbia and California.

Related: Killer whale still ailing; scientists last spotted her on Saturday

Related: Emaciated orca gets first treatment after being spotted in B.C. waters

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Changes coming to BC Ferries reservations for Vancouver Island routes

Many customers are booking multiple reservations, inflating wait times

Ladysmith Interact Club collecting food donations for those in need

On November 22nd and 23rd, Interact Club will be at the Ladysmith… Continue reading

Caps fall to Clippers in Nanaimo on Friday night

Clippers’ tying and winning goals come in less than a minute

Cowichan school district approves women’s winter shelter

The Cowichan Valley School District’s board of education has approved in principle… Continue reading

Six students arrested, charged in sex assault probe at Toronto all-boys school

The school’s principal, Greg Reeves, described the video of the alleged sexual assault as ‘horrific’

Vancouver Island remembers

Important stories shared as Islanders salute those who made the greatest sacrifice

Elections BC keeps eye on Canada Post dispute, but no change in Nov. 30 deadline

Vote No spokesman say an extension of one or two weeks would ensure all ballots are counted

Langley school pulls Japanese ‘rising sun’ flag after student petition

School district promises consultation with students and parents, defends using flag for war history

Calgary bobsled death inquiry recommends infrared technology, safety audits

A judge found the deaths of 17-year-old twins Evan and Jordan Caldwell were accidental and caused by blunt-force head and neck trauma

First ski hill in B.C. opened this weekend

Sun Peaks, near Kamloops, was the first ski hill in the province to open for season

$50k fine and community service for Vancouver Island tax evader

David Gonyea was given a nine-month conditional sentence

Paved Pacific Rim National Park trail costs balloon to $51 million

Feds kick in an additional $17 million to complete trail running between Tofino and Ucluelet

Most Read