Orca Network News - July, 2011

News, updates and events about
the Southern Resident orcas,
orcas worldwide, and their habitats
July 1, 2011 through July 31, 2011.

New worry for orcas in Puget Sound: inbreeding
July 21, 2011 (Whidbey News Times)
While the endangered southern resident orcas in J, K and L pods avoid mating with siblings or offspring, a significant number of young whales in recent years have been born to parents that are members of the same pod, according to a new study by several of the Northwest's top orca scientists.
They found that mating was dominated by a handful of aging males, the oldest of which, J1 — dubbed Ruffles, for his wrinkled dorsal fin — fathered at least five calves just in J-pod. The other top breeding male, L41, also produced offspring from an L-pod female.

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