Saturday, March 15, 2014
Conservation and Population Recovery Initiatives: Northern and Southern Resident Killer Whales In Canada's Pacific Region: March, 2014
The team assessed the population dynamics of the Northern and Southern resident killer whales, using field study demographics, census data, and photo-identification of the killer whales in these two, distinct populations. They examined deaths and births in the individual groups, between 1973 and 2005 to establish averages in both categories. They also examined annual Chinook and Chum salmon numbers during the same period. Their findings showed a striking correspondence between changes in Chinook salmon abundance and mortality of northern and southern resident killer whales, suggesting that prey limitation was an important factor in population declines.