Orca pod shows off newest member, named L109 for now
For now, let's keep it formal. Welcome, L109. The newest member of an orca pod that swims Puget Sound won't get a cute name until surviving...
By Seattle Times staff
For now, let's keep it formal. Welcome, L109.
The newest member of an orca pod that swims Puget Sound won't get a cute name until surviving a critical first year.
But the killer-whale calf, likely just a month or two old, already has made its media debut after being photographed with the L-pod last weekend in Monterey Bay, Calif.
The baby and her pod were playful, breaching and zipping around a whale believed to be her mother, said Nancy Black, a marine biologist who photographed L109.
"They were here all day Saturday feeding on salmon," Black said.
Kelley Balcomb-Bartok, a researcher at the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbor, said L109's mother appears to be either L55 (Nugget) or her daughter, L82 (Kasatka).
"Typically, no cute name is given for a year, to allow the baby to survive a year. If it does, we'll go into that," Balcomb-Bartok said.
If L-pod sticks with its historical travel pattern, L109 should be in Puget Sound in early June.
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