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orca cam - orcalab base overview cam

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orca cam - orcalab base overview cam

Orca whales, sometimes referred to as killer whales, are apex predators and the largest member of the oceanic dolphin family. Their diet generally consists of sea birds, other whales, sea lions, seals, and fish.

Orcas are found throughout all five of Earth's oceans but prefer cold, coastal waters like those found throughout British Columbia (where our live orca cam is located), the San Juan Islands in the US state of Washington, and Norway.

Orca social habits

Orcas live and hunt in groups called "pods", which can include up to about 35 individual whales. Each pod has its own unique noise that allows the orcas to communicate and recognize each other.

Orcas, like dolphins, use eco-location to hunt their underwater prey. They determine the distance of an object or prey by emitting sound waves and listening to variations in the time it takes for the sounds to echo back.

Female orca whales give birth after about 16 - 17 months of pregnancy and can produce a calf every 3 - 10 years.

Orca whales are extremely social creatures and some pods may travel hundreds of miles to hunt, play, mate and give birth. Beginning in the 1960s, wild orcas were captured in the Pacific Northwest and sold to amusement parks such as Marine Land, and later, SeaWorld. In the 1970s a growing movement of environmentalists pressured the government to protect marine mammals because many of the captive killer whales died due to stress and negligence. In 197s the US congress passed the US Marine Mammal Protection Act. The act made it illegal to capture wild orcas without a special permit. Despite conservation efforts like this, orcas continued to be taken from water arctic waters near Iceland for several decades.

The 1993 film Free Willy sparked an interest in conservation efforts among the mainstream public. Twenty years later, the 2013 documentary film Blackfish raised awareness about the negative effects of captivity on orcas.

Instead of viewing captive orcas like Shamu at SeaWorld, we hope you use our live orca cam to observe these magnificent whales in the wild.

  • topic: whales

  • location: orcalab base

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orca facts and webcam information

orca lab logo

From OrcaLab HQ, this cam brings wide views of Blackney Pass, one of the main travel routes for Northern Resident orca families during the summer and fall. It also monitors humpback whales and steller sea lions. Catch spectacular sunrises all year round from beyond the mountains of Vancouver Island.

OrcaLab’s whale research station is located on Hanson Island in British Columbia’s Johnstone Strait at Blackfish Sound. These waters are the summer home to over 150 orca whales, and an ideal place to study the whales in their natural habitat. To that end, OrcaLab set up a network of remote hydrophones covering 50 sq. km of the surrounding core habitat for Northern Resident orcas. The lab has long shared its library of orca songs with a worldwide audience. It now adds a visual dimension, streaming a series of live cameras in partnership with explore.org.

about

location: Hanson Island, British Columbia

best hours:8:15am - 6:15pm

time zone: Pacific Daylight Time

links: OrcaLab
Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC)
Earth Island Institute
EarthTrust

Orca whales, sometimes referred to as killer whales, are apex predators and the largest member of the oceanic dolphin family. Their diet generally consists of sea birds, other whales, sea lions, seals, and fish.

Orcas are found throughout all five of Earth's oceans but prefer cold, coastal waters like those found throughout British Columbia (where our live orca cam is located), the San Juan Islands in the US state of Washington, and Norway.

Orca social habits

Orcas live and hunt in groups called "pods", which can include up to about 35 individual whales. Each pod has its own unique noise that allows the orcas to communicate and recognize each other.

Orcas, like dolphins, use eco-location to hunt their underwater prey. They determine the distance of an object or prey by emitting sound waves and listening to variations in the time it takes for the sounds to echo back.

Female orca whales give birth after about 16 - 17 months of pregnancy and can produce a calf every 3 - 10 years.

Orca whales are extremely social creatures and some pods may travel hundreds of miles to hunt, play, mate and give birth. Beginning in the 1960s, wild orcas were captured in the Pacific Northwest and sold to amusement parks such as Marine Land, and later, SeaWorld. In the 1970s a growing movement of environmentalists pressured the government to protect marine mammals because many of the captive killer whales died due to stress and negligence. In 197s the US congress passed the US Marine Mammal Protection Act. The act made it illegal to capture wild orcas without a special permit. Despite conservation efforts like this, orcas continued to be taken from water arctic waters near Iceland for several decades.

The 1993 film Free Willy sparked an interest in conservation efforts among the mainstream public. Twenty years later, the 2013 documentary film Blackfish raised awareness about the negative effects of captivity on orcas.

Instead of viewing captive orcas like Shamu at SeaWorld, we hope you use our live orca cam to observe these magnificent whales in the wild.

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