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Scientists record first case of infanticide in orcas

For the first time, scientists have recorded an incident in which a male orca deliberately drowned an orca calf from another pod, assisted by his own mother. The mother of the calf tried unsuccessfully to defend her offspring. 

While this behaviour has been recorded in other animals and three species of dolphin, it had never been seen before in orcas.

Over 130 whales die on Australian beach

Over 130 short-finned pilot whales have died in a mass stranding on a beach in Western Australia.

Commercial fishermen spotted the pod of 150 whales stranding at Hamelin Bay, 200 miles south of Perth. Western Australia state’s Parks and Wildlife Service arrived at the scene by morning and were assessing the health of around 15 whales left alive, attempting to herd some of the whales back out to sea.

Washington Governor signs Executive Order for Southern Resident orca recovery

Orca and salmon advocates welcome Governor Inslee’s creation of an emergency orca task force

A series of near-term actions and the establishment of an action-oriented task force in the executive order reflects the serious crisis facing the Southern Resident orcas and the urgent need for meaningful salmon restoration and other measures.

New study suggests amount of microplastic in oceans could be much higher

A new global map of aquatic plastic pollution has revealed that rivers in the north west of the UK have the highest microplastic pollution discovered so far anywhere in the world.

Scientists from the University of Manchester took samples from 40 sites across the region with over 500,000 microplastic particles discovered in the River Tame alone.

Endangered porpoise could be even closer to extinction than first thought

Unconfirmed reports on the plight of the vaquita suggest that no more than 12 now remain.

Vaquitas are the world’s smallest and one of the most endangered species of whale, dolphin or porpoise on the planet. Found only in Mexico’s northern Gulf of California, the population has declined by more than 75% in the past three years alone. In Spanish, vaquita means 'little cow' and many local people believe them to be 'mythical creatures' as most have never seen one and photographs, until recently, were lacking.

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