Ailing orca at centre of international rescue efforts missing for days

U.S. and Canadian researchers last saw J50 on Friday, Sept. 7, and have since spotted her JPod

J50, a sick and emaciated killer whale at the centre of international rescue efforts, hasn’t been seen with her Jpod – which includes her mother – for five days, according to U.S. and Canadian researchers.

The four-year-old killer whale, described as strikingly skinny by marine biologists, has typically been spotted swimming near her mother. She is one of the 75 remaining southern killer whales in the world.

But, despite favourable conditions this week, both the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada biologists have yet to spot J50. She was last seen Sept. 7.

READ MORE: U.S., Canadian researchers consider capturing ailing orca J50

“Teams were on the water searching yesterday and are increasing a broad transboundary search today,” NOAA said in an update.

Teams are ready to respond if J50 is located and requires medical attention, the DFO said in a statement.

Yesterday, researchers said they’re considering a rescue mission for the ailing orca that would involve capturing, treating and then releasing her back to her family. This would only happen if she was if she became stranded or separated from her pod, or beached.

The West Coast Marine mammal Stranding Network has been notified, NOAA said, and airline crews flying out of the San Juan Islands were keeping watch.

Anyone who spots J50 can call the reporting hotline at 1-800-465-4336.

Just Posted

Vancouver Island pharmacist suspended for giving drugs with human placenta

RCMP had samples of the seized substances tested by Health Canada

Getting along and information flow essentials for Area G director candidate

Jonas feels working productively together makes a better community

Bayview Place pullout a magnet for trouble, Maple Bay neighbours say

North Cowichan council forwards concerns to police

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

Sister of plane crash victim that went missing in B.C. starting support network

Tammy Neron wants to help families who are searching for missing people

‘Hello, 911? There’s a horse in my living room’

Sproat Lake firefighters called to ‘rescue’ quarter-horse from Alberni Valley house

Assault charge withdrawn vs. ex-Jays pitcher Roberto Osuna

Former Toronto player agrees to peace bond

UPDATED: Bill Cosby gets 3-10 years in prison for sexual assault

Judge also declared the disgraced comedian a ‘sexually violent predator’

B.C. making progress on senior care staffing, Adrian Dix says

Minister aims to meet residential care provincial standard by 2021

B.C. realtor receives racist letter touching on ‘empty homes’

The letter has been met with condemnation of the racism after Winnie Wu posted it online

Motorcyclist dead following crash on Vancouver Island

Victim was driving down from Mount Washington Resort on Strathcona Parkway

WATCH: Rare close encounter with whale pod

Pod of southern resident orca whales breach within arms length of whale watchers

Most Read