Sunday, October 30, 2016
The Center for Whale Research reported that she grew progressively emaciated for the past several months until she disappeared from her family group around October 19. Polaris was only 24 years old, female orcas live on average for fifty years. Her son Dipper J54, born last December was still nursing and can not survive without her. The endangered southern residents now only have 80 members. Main threats include decline in salmon, vessel noise and traffic, and chemical contamination. Protecting Chinook salmon runs and river beds is an important action in conserving this declining population.