White Killer Whale Spotted Off Alaska

Hudson

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White Killer Whale Spotted Off Alaska
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (March 7) - The white killer whale spotted in Alaska's Aleutian Islands sent researchers and the ship's crew scrambling for their cameras.

The nearly mythic creature was real after all.
"I had heard about this whale, but we had never been able to find it," said Holly Fearnbach, a research biologist with the National Marine Mammal Laboratory in Seattle who photographed the rarity. "It was quite neat to find it."

The whale was spotted last month while scientists aboard the Oscar Dyson, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration research ship, were conducting an acoustic survey of pollock near Steller sea lion haulout sites.

It had been spotted once in the Aleutians years ago but had eluded researchers since, even though they had seen many of the more classic black and white whales over the years.

Fearnbach said the white whale stood out.

"When you first looked at it, it was very white," she said Thursday.

Further observation showed that while the whale's saddle area was white, other parts of its body had a subtle yellowish or brownish color.

It likely is not a true albino given the coloration, said John Durban, a research biologist at NOAA's Alaska Fisheries Science Center in Seattle. That's probably a good thing - true albinos usually don't live long and can have health problems.

Durban said white killer whales have been spotted elsewhere in the area twice before: in 1993 in the northern Bering Sea around St. Lawrence Island and in 2001 near Adak in the central Aleutians. There have also been sightings along the Russian coast.

While Alaska researchers have documented thousands of black and white killer whales in the Bering Sea and the Aleutians during summer surveys, this was something new and exciting, Durban said.

"This is the first time we came across a white killer whale," he said.

The scientists observed several pods over a two-week period. The white whale was in a family group of 12 on a day when the seas were fairly rough. It was spotted about 2 miles off Kanaga Volcano on Feb. 23.

The ship stayed with the whale for about 30 minutes.
http://news.aol.com/story/_a/white-...a/20080307090209990001?ncid=NWS00010000000001
Wonder if there was an Ishmael aboard.
 

TheDrip

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Jan 9, 2006
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This just in: Mulatto killer whales demand it pays reparations.
 
Feb 20, 2006
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Exhibiting a behavior never before seen, it was accompanied by it's children.
 

Schmed

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Nov 4, 2002
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#11
Must be the serial killer whale, since he is white. The others are the Killa Whales.
 

Butter Nuggets

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May 29, 2006
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They are notoriously hard to spot because they can't jump as high.
 

Cunt Smasher

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Aug 26, 2005
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Update-(AP) It's been reported today by scientists in Alaska the white killer whale spotted March 7 is, after closer observation,a fat unattractive white female Killer Whale,that being the cause of being sighted in a pod of the more common black killer whales.
 

Stormrider666

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Mar 19, 2005
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Update-(AP) It's been reported today by scientists in Alaska the white killer whale spotted March 7 is, after closer observation,a fat unattractive white female Killer Whale,that being the cause of being sighted in a pod of the more common black killer whales.
Researchers have also discovered, that the white killer whales will move in large droves, whenever a pod of black killer whales move into their part of the ocean.





On a serious note, this a pretty cool discovery. Last year it was the corpse of the colossal squid, that was discovered. This year, its the white killer whale.