Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 2:26 pm
An environmental group is calling for a major expansion in habitat protection for Puget Sound's killer whales.
Research shows the endangered orcas that live in Puget Sound in the summer are venturing up and down the West Coast in the winter to forage for food. Scientists tracking these southern resident orcas have followed the whales as far north as Alaska and as far south as Monterey, Calif.
Citing worsening marine water quality and the declining orca population, Chinook salmon and herring, the state agency Puget Sound Partnership referred to the Puget Sound as a patient in “critical condition.”
Scientists believe that lack of food, underwater noise and pollution have contributed to the decline of Puget Sound’s iconic killer whales. One man is taking the latest orca research into classrooms around the Northwest.