Humans Save Killer Whale From Being Eaten Alive by Birds

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Stranded Killer Whale Survives With the Help of Humans

by Alex Fox/Smithsonianmag.com

Last Thursday at around 9 a.m. local time, a boat off the eastern shore of Prince of Wales Island in Southeast Alaska spotted a heart wrenching scene: a 20-foot killer whale stranded high and dry on the rocks of the island’s jagged coast. When the vessel reported the stranding, its crew swiftly received authorization to begin bathing the beached whale with seawater to keep its skin moist, reports Michelle Theriault Boots for the Anchorage Daily News. The crew also fought off encroaching birds, which had begun trying to gouge out beak-fulls of the still-living marine mammal’s flesh.

The boat’s captain, Chance Strickland, tells Alyssa Lukpat and Jacey Fortin of the New York Times that he could hear this embattled whale calling out as he and his crew doused it with buckets of seawater.

Strickland and his crew were able to depart from the scene once an officer with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Alaska Wildlife Troopers arrived, report Alaa Elassar and Andy Rose of CNN. The goal was to keep the whale safe and its skin damp and cool until the tide got high for the animal to float and, eventually, swim to the safety of deeper waters.

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Biography
Carol graduated from Riverside White Cross School of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Literature. She attended the University of Toledo, College of Nursing, and received a Master’s of Nursing Science Degree as an Educator.

She has traveled extensively, is a photographer, and writes on medical issues. Carol has three children RJ, Katherine, and Stephen – one daughter-in-law; Katie – two granddaughters; Isabella Marianna and Zoe Olivia – and one grandson, Alexander Paul. She also shares her life with husband Gordon Duff, many cats, and two rescue pups.

Carol’s Archives 2009-2013
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2 COMMENTS

  1. Birds are awful. I just had a problem with some ravens flying directly over my dog and harassing it on a walk. They sense it’s old now.

    Now I do realize the Smithsonian has gone downhill a bit, but surely Alex Fox should at least understand that Biggs killers whales are not a type of whale at all. They are a type of Dolphin and the largest member of the Dolphin family, which is a distinct sub-species. They are far more intelligent than any ordinary plankton-eating Whale is. They have an encephalization quotient higher than any other animal except humans. They are their own sub-species with teeth (aka, dolphin family) with very advanced and enhanced sonar. They go around killing other dumber whales and sharks also. The orcas love to get shark liver to feed to their young.

    At the end of the video, they equate Biggs Killer Whale strandings with other live Whale strandings in Australia. They are not an ordinary whale, they are a dolphin. Know your animals Smithsonian!