Skip to content
Orca need Chinook Salmon to survive
J35 Orca pushes dead calf around for days Photo: Michael Weiss, CWR

Chinook Salmon is in decline and it is up to us to help! Below is a special statement released today (July 30 2018) by Ken Balcomb, the Founder and Senior Scientist for the Center for Whale Research. Ken reiterates the importance of restoring wild Chinook Salmon to the Salish Sea so these Southern Resident Orca stand a fighting chance against extinction.

“The larger environmental question reflected in the J35 story is that both the USA and Canada MUST redouble efforts to restore wild salmon (particularly Chinook) throughout Washington State and British Columbia for food supply for the SRKW in this region. Whales in this Endangered population are dependent upon Chinook salmon for their primary food source. Unfortunately, Chinook salmon are also Endangered. We have long demonstrated that these fish-eating whales are getting skinnier and skinnier, and the death rate is increasing. This baby whale (and 100% of the pregnancies in the past three years) failed to be viable because the mothers do not have sufficient food. Period. We’ve got at most five more years of reproductive life in this population to make it happen, but if we don’t do it in those five years, it isn’t going to happen. My energy is going toward advocating restoration of wild Chinook salmon populations as a priority.”

Ken Balcomb
Founder and Senior Scientist, Center for Whale Research

The Southern Resident orcas need your help like never before.

For these 75 whales to survive, and for their community to grow, they need us to be their voice. In growing the Center for Whale Research membership program we become a strong collective voice for the whales.

A special THANK YOU to CWR Members and Donors – we appreciate your support!

If this article interests you, you may also want to check out SpringTide’s Contribution to Conservation or take a peek at our Facebook Page for similar stories.

Book Now