(Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans helped an entangled killer whale near Salt Spring Island on May 31, 2018. (Screenshot/DFO)

Entangled killer whale saved off B.C. coast

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans reminds everyone to call their emergency line whenever an animal is in trouble

Residents of Salt Spring Island helped alert the Department of Fisheries and Oceans this week to an entangled killer whale off the B.C. coast.

The transient orca had become wound up in commercial prawn fishing gear near Vesuvius, according to DFO officials, who say this isn’t the first time this particular whale has caused some minor chaos in the ocean.

“He’s known for playing with rope and floats,” said Paul Cottrell, marine mammals coordinator with the DFO’s Pacific region.

“He also has a bad habit of interacting with prop engines and nets, but in previous times he’s been able to free himself. This time he had gotten his tail wrapped.”

Cottrell said the DFO was alerted at around 7:30 Thursday morning, and members of their response team arrived two hours later.

“I do a lot of these rescues and the killer whale was quite calm when we were close and that was quite a different experience than dealing with humpback and grey whales,” he explained.

“This situation was a little different, and then the whale was able to roll out of the entanglement on its own.”

Cottrell credits the Salt Spring residents for quickly calling the DFO’s emergency marine mammal distress line at 1-800-465-4336 and alerting officials.

Once the whale had worked itself free, the response team followed along to make sure it was alright.

Seeing it swim, jump and slap the water with its tail, Cottrell only hopes the large mammal finally learned its lesson this time.



ragnar.haagen@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Home care complaints up 45% on Vancouver Island

Number of home care hours delivered down 6%, complaints up 45 %

VIDEO: West Coast youth learn the ins and outs of business

Students develop company ‘Wild Coasters’

Cost of living going up while wages are going down in Tofino and Ucluelet

The Clayoquot Biosphere Trust’s Vital Signs Report shows need to diversify economy.

Extreme waves and king tides expected around Tofino and Ucluelet this weekend

Extreme wave hazard warning at the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.

Strong winds up to 100 km/h for parts of Vancouver Island

Wind warning in effect for north, east and west Vancouver Island into Saturday morning

VIDEO: Here’s what the B.C. legislature officers are accused of buying

Personal trips, purchases, alcohol and more laid out in 76-page report by Plecas

Why would the B.C. legislature need a firewood splitter?

First sign of police involvement in investigation of top managers

New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins

Guide no longer lists milk and dairy products as a distinct food group

Judge annuls hairdresser’s forced marriage to boss’ relative

Woman was told she’d be fired if she didn’t marry boss’s Indian relative so he could immigrate here

Liberals look to make home-buying more affordable for millennials: Morneau

Housing is expected to be a prominent campaign issue ahead of October’s federal election

Cannabis-carrying border crossers could be hit with fines under coming system

Penalties are slated to be in place some time next year

Man accused of threatening to kill ‘as many girls as I see’

Christopher W. Cleary wrote he was angry because he’d never had a girlfriend and wanted to ‘make it right’ with a mass shooting

Canadian talent abound on newly revamped Vancouver Whitecaps squad

Lineup is full of new faces after the organization parted ways with 18 players over the off-season

Most Read