Stuck in B.C. lagoon for weeks, killer whale calf is finally free

Click to play video: 'Orphaned orca calf swims into deeper waters on her own'
Orphaned orca calf swims into deeper waters on her own
After weeks of efforts by First Nations and a small army of marine experts, the orphaned orca stranded in a lagoon near Zeballos, B.C. has swam out to deeper waters on her own. Kylie Stanton tells us what happens now – Apr 26, 2024

At 2:30 a.m. Friday at high tide, B.C.’s orphaned orca whale calf, Kwee-sa-hay-is or Brave Little Hunter, swam past the sandbar her mother beached and died, under a bridge, down Little Espinosa Inlet, on to Esperanza near Zeballos.

The calf has been stuck in a shallow lagoon since March 23, when she and her mother swam through a narrow channel connected to the ocean.

When the tide went out, it left her mother who was pregnant, beached on the rocks. The mother died shortly thereafter.

Click to play video: 'B.C. orphaned orca calf swims out of lagoon on her own'
B.C. orphaned orca calf swims out of lagoon on her own

A team of experts has spent weeks trying to coax the orca calf out of the lagoon and successfully fed it, but concerns were running high about how the two-year-old orca was going to leave.

Story continues below advertisement

“After most everyone had left to get some sleep the small group who remained stood as witnesses to watch her swim under the bridge and down the inlet,” a press release from the Ehattesaht First Nation said.

Breaking news from Canada and around the world sent to your email, as it happens.

“The team later found her in Espinosa Inlet and followed her from a distance as she moved toward Esperanza Inlet proper. This morning they will encourage her out toward the open ocean where it is hoped that the Brave Little Hunter’s calls will now be heard by her family.”

— More to come.

Sponsored content