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Citizens urged to report whale sightings as San Juan oil spill spreads into Canadian waters

Whales are unable to detect or avoid slicks, increasing the risk of inhaling or ingesting the contaminants.

Salvage and clean-up vessels on the scene. Photo taken from a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter on Aug. 14, 2022.
Rescue and cleanup vessels at the scene. Photo taken from a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter on August 14, 2022. Photo by US Coast Guard

Conservation group releases whale sightings along British Columbia to public. The coast as oil spills from sunken fishing vessels reach Canadian waters.

Real-time information on whale whereabouts could help prevent marine mammals, especially the endangered southern killer whales, from becoming entangled in oil slicks. There is a nature.

"He's only 73 left," said Chloe He Robinson, Senior Manager of Protective Effects at Oceanwise. "When they pass through an area with oil fuel, it can really affect their health." It sank off the west coast of San Juan Island, spilling about 10,000 liters of fuel.

Sixty of the 73 endangered whales were reported to be south of the spill when the ship sank.

On Monday, the US Coast Guard said no whales were identified in the affected area.

A temporary killer whale was spotted several miles from the site on Friday, according to US media reports.

The U.S. Coast Guard said it "has personnel on standby immediately to carry out deterrence measures should whales attempt to approach areas of active beaming."

The southern-dwelling killer whales were last spotted on Sunday in waters served by a ferry between Washington and Victoria, Robinson said. Found heading west away.

But whales can easily change direction, and the area where the ship sank is an important feeding ground for whales, Robinson said.

Killer whales cannot avoid oil slicks and are at high risk of inhaling or ingesting contaminants.Exposure to oil and toxic vapors can result in skin irritation, internal damage and even death.

Robinson said it's important to keep your eyes on the coast. Her plea to report whale sightings isn't just for boaters on the water, she added. Most of the sightings come from people on the coast.

Sightings can be reported in real-time through the Ocean Wise WhaleReport app, which can be downloaded to your smartphone.

The alert system then broadcasts details of the whale sighting to authorities such as the Coast Guard, Transport Canada, and the Canadian Fisheries and Oceans Office (DFO).

If a whale is nearby or in danger of swimming through an oil slick, authorities can use methods such as acoustic noise and underwater firecrackers to distract them.

This is her one of the first instances where an app was used for this purpose, Robinson said. In the past, it was primarily used to signal the location of whales to ships in order to reduce the risk of collisions with ships.

"In the event of an oil spill related to the San Juan shipwreck incident, it is important to know where the marine mammals are in real time," said DFO's Marine Mammal Research Institute. Expert Paul Cottrell released. "This will allow our team to react in real time to mitigate exposure

preventing killer whales from swimming into polluted waters impacts salmon and whales. It is just one of the steps to deal with the consequences of a potential oil spill.' Primary prey, and other marine life.

'Even after the spill has been cleaned up, residual oil, Fuel, hydrocarbons remain and will continue to be a threat," she said. "They are not gone the moment the boat is gone."

  1. Tug boats prepare a oil tanker to go under the Second Narrows bridge in Burrard Inlet, just outside of metro Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, May, 1, 2018.

    BC Ottawa still contested over 'gaps' in oil spill response plans

  2. Salvage/cleanup vessels on the scene. Image from a United States Coast Guard helicopter of the oil slick from a sunken fishing boat on Aug. 14, 2022.

    Concern for endangered killer whales in British Columbia Large scale from sunken US fishing vessel

  3. Baby orca whale is being pushed by her mother, J35, after being born off the coast near Victoria, British Columbia. The new orca died soon after being born. The mother was observed propping the newborn on her forehead and trying to keep it near the surface of the water.

    Are we seeing the real-time extinction of southern populations after a fuel spill? .

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