orcinus orca

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Transient Killer Whales by Tory Kallman on Flickr
Via Flickr:
Monterey Bay Whale Watch All Day Trip 4/20/14

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Flyby by Anthony Kaulfuss
Via Flickr:
Three curious killer whales

In this track you can hear orcas clicking and calling from a recording made with a tag attached to one of the whales in the group using suction cups. You can also hear the sound of water flowing through the tag as the whale speeds up, giving you a real sense of being underwater with them!

Icelandic Orca Project

Made with SoundCloud
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Superpod by Anthony Kaulfuss
Via Flickr:
Resident killer whales heading up Boundary Pass.

It’s been a long ass time since I actually drew anything, but since Tilikum passed, I wanted to draw a memorial image for him.

I’ve drawn Tilikum several times through my cetacean drawing “career.” He was one of the first few orcas I drew way back when I first took an interest in them. Zar’s original design and personality was based partially on Tilikum, back when I first created him in 2007. Tilly had a heavy influence on my development as an artist, and on the general public as an icon of how tragic and degenerative captivity is for orcas. He met an unfortunate end, but at least now he can go wherever he wants to go.

Artwork © Shiverdam

nature.com
Respiratory Microbiome of Endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales and Microbiota of Surrounding Sea Surface Microlayer in the Eastern North Pacific
In the Salish Sea, the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whale (SRKW) is a high trophic indicator of ecosystem health. Three major threats have been identified for this population: reduced prey availability, anthropogenic contaminants, and marine vessel disturbances. These perturbations can culminate in significant morbidity and mortality, usually associated with secondary infections that have a predilection to the respiratory system. To characterize the composition of the respiratory microbiota and identify recognized pathogens of SRKW, exhaled breath samples were collected between 2006–2009 and analyzed for bacteria, fungi and viruses using (1) culture-dependent, targeted PCR-based methodologies and (2) taxonomically broad, non-culture dependent PCR-based methodologies. Results were compared with sea surface microlayer (SML) samples to characterize the respective microbial constituents. An array of bacteria and fungi in breath and SML samples were identified, as well as microorganisms that exhibited resistance to multiple antimicrobial agents. The SML microbes and respiratory microbiota carry a pathogenic risk which we propose as an additional, fourth putative stressor (pathogens), which may adversely impact the endangered SRKW population.