Whales make several appearances in a week

Ann Stateler and Odin Lonning, who run a whale research project on Vashon, documented three visits by killer whales between Feb. 5 and 10, the pair reports.

The sightings included 15 transient orcas in Colvos Passage on Feb. 5; “an intriguing combination of 13 southern resident orcas” in East Passage on Feb. 9 and 10, and another collection of whales off of Point Robinson on Feb. 10, according to an email from Stateler.

That second group may have included a newborn, she said, based on behavioral observations, the whales’ slow pace and reports from spotters for the Vashon Hydrophone Project (VHP), which Stateler and Lonning run.

“A newborn would be noticeably smaller, with bright orange markings,” she said.

Islanders who see whales are urged to call the VHP at 463-9041.


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