NEWS
03/31/2015 14:12 EDT | Updated 05/31/2015 01:12 EDT

Baby boom continues for endangered J pod orcas with new calf spotted off B.C.

GALIANO ISLAND, B.C. - Researchers say yet another baby has been born to an endangered population of orcas off British Columbia's coast.Scientists say it's the fourth calf to join the J pod group of southern resident killer whales in the last three months.The Pacific Whale Watch Association spotted the baby Monday near Active Pass off B.C.'s southern Gulf Islands.Researcher Jeanne Hyde says she first thought the baby was a different, three-month-old calf when she saw it near Galiano Island.Crews then realized there were two calves and noticed heavy creases — or fetal folds — on the first orca's body, indicating it was a newborn.The association's executive director Michael Harris says that despite the recent baby boom southern residents are still a long way from recovery, with just 81 whales left in waters off B.C. and Washington state.