This article exists as part of the online archive for HuffPost Canada, which closed in 2021.

Cause of death unknown after orca calf found dead on Vancouver Island coast

VANCOUVER — An orca calf has been found dead near Ucluelet on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Paul Cottrell of Fisheries and Oceans Canada says a surfer found the whale on Dec. 23 and a necropsy was conducted on Christmas Day.

He says scientists are still awaiting results of tissue-sample testing and a cause of death is not yet known.

Cottrell says DNA tests are expected to show whether the whale was part of the endangered southern resident population, which had a baby boom of eight calves born this year.

He says it's possible the calf is part of the transient population, which is classified as threatened but not endangered.

Cottrell says scientists believe the calf was about two months old.

The Canadian Press

Suggest a correction
This article exists as part of the online archive for HuffPost Canada. Certain site features have been disabled. If you have questions or concerns, please check our FAQ or contact support@huffpost.com.