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West Coast Humpback Whales Face “Perfect Storm” as Risk of Accidental Entanglements Increase

West Coast Humpback Whales Face “Perfect Storm” as Risk of Accidental Entanglements Increase

Accidental entanglement in fishing gear is one of the biggest global threats to whales and dolphins.  Off all coasts of the U.S., entanglement is growing issue, especially for endangered populations of whales.  In the Pacific Ocean off the West Coast, entanglements have increased significantly since 2013 and reached record levels compared to the historic average. …

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Lasting Legacies: Orca Action Month 2023

Lasting legacies

Each June we celebrate Orca Month and the unique community of Southern Resident orcas, and this June is extra special.  2023 is also the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), a landmark law that protects vulnerable species and the places they call home. The ESA means a lot for the Southern Residents.  The law is written…

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Southern Resident orca petition to list them under Oregon Endangered Species Act advanced

The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission voted today to advance a petition seeking to protect southern resident orcas under the state Endangered Species Act (ESA). The petition was brought by the Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife and Whale and Dolphin Conservation. In the coming months the commission will conduct a public rulemaking process…

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WDC and Conservation Partners Continue to Seek Oregon Endangered Species Protection for Southern Resident Orcas

On Friday, April 21st, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission will determine whether the petition submitted earlier this year by WDC and our conservation partners Defenders of Wildlife and the Center for Biological Diversity to list the Southern Resident orcas under the Oregon Endangered Species Act presents enough information to move forward with the listing. …

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Looking forward for Southern Resident orcas in 2023

Hysazu Photography 2022 was a big year for Southern Resident orcas – 2022 brought the final decision to remove the Klamath River dams in Oregon and California, which will give its salmon, a crucial food source for the orcas, a much-needed boost.   Built early in the 1900s, the Klamath dams did not have fish passage…

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Dam Good News for Southern Resident orcas

Pardon the pun (we’ve used it before) but we just can’t help ourselves.  After decades of advocacy by Tribes, conservation groups, and river users, the Klamath River dams are officially coming down.  This is great news for the Southern Resident orcas, who rely on Klamath River salmon as part of their seasonal diet, and a…

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Stream to Sea: Orca Action Month 2022

This June was an exceptionally busy and exciting Orca Month, starting with a somewhat surprising but wonderful return to their summer home waters by J pod of the Southern Resident orca population.  Orca Month is celebrated in June to align with the time the orcas historically returned to the Salish Sea, but in recent years…

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Pregnant Southern Resident orcas and an ask for more space

A mixed bag of news for endangered Southern Resident orcas was announced at the end of Orca Action Month in June.  The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) declared 13 individuals in the population “vulnerable” ahead of the summer season when the orcas are usually in their core summer habitat around Washington’s San Juan…

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It’s Time To Breach The Snake River Dams

The Snake River dams were controversial even before they were built.  While they were still in the planning stage, Northwest Tribes, salmon advocates, and even state agencies spoke out against the damage that would be caused to salmon.  Tribes who lived along the Snake River had already seen the devastation that major dams caused to…

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