Female newborn killer whale ‘J50’ injects hope into J pod

January 8, 2015 8:50 AM

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A newborn killer whale has given new hope to a pod of whales off the coast of Washington state. The pod hadn’t seen a birth in nearly two years, and previously lost a pregnant female in December. However, as the birth occurred scientists were only cautiously optimistic regarding the future of the whales. To this point, it would appear as though the newborn is doing very well though. Scientists are calling the whale J50, and they noted that if this whale lives it will go down as “the first successful newborn in the Puget Sound population in about two and a half years.”

Ultimately, a lot of this comes down to losing reproductive potential. With each newborn that fails to make it to adulthood – it becomes more challenging for the pod to continue on. What this creates is a lot of stress and tension on the whales that exist within the pod and creates an imbalance. Thi...

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