Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

August 20, 2007

L-Pod Welcomes a New Arrival!

Baby L-110 comes up for a peak at the world. L-103 (born in 2003) on the far left, and L-7 (born in 1961) in the center.
I'm absolutely over the moon to hear that the above baby orca was born two weeks ago to L-Pod, which is the pod of whales that I got to see when I was in Victoria. I am especially thrilled that he/she was born so close to when I saw his/her family off San Juan Island! The marine biologist identified the whale I saw, below, as "L-41/Mega", who was born in 1977. Maybe he's the new baby's father, cousin or uncle!!I think orcas are adorable; they always look like they are smiling, just like dolphins. Which isn't surprising since the orca whale is actually the largest member of the dolphin group. If you have a moment, check out the Center for Whale Research.

FRIDAY HARBOR, Wash. -- The Center for Whale Research reports a baby orca whale, believed to be about two weeks old, has been sighted off San Juan Island.

The center's director of development and outreach director says the orca's birth was confirmed Sunday when the entire Southern Resident killer whale population swam in to look for food on the west side of San Juan Island on Sunday evening.

Kelley Balcom-Bartok says he was among researchers who went out in a 19-foot boat and saw the new whale.

The new birth puts the Southern Resident population -- the J, K and L pods -- at 87 whales. The new whale belongs to L pod, a family group.

Balcom-Bartok was among researchers who went out in a 19-foot boat and saw the new whale.
The new birth puts the southern resident population -- the J, K and L pods -- at 87 whales. The new whale belongs to L pod, a family group.

The gender of the baby is unknown, but researchers are confident its mother is L83, who was born July 27, 1990. The baby has been named L110.

Balcomb-Bartok said there are 43 orcas in L pod, 25 in J pod and 19 in K pod. The birth had been reported about two weeks ago by reliable observers along the southern coast of Vancouver Island, he said.

The resident orca pods returned to Puget Sound waters in July after being in the Pacific Ocean since late last year. L pod spent most of the winter off the West Coast. Members of K pod were spotted off San Francisco during the winter. J pod can be spotted in the Puget Sound area almost any time of year.


  1. Anonymous9:45 PM


    born in 1962? how long do they live? that is awesome they live long. hee hee a middle aged orca. cool.

  2. Aw, baby orcas, god love 'em! I hate to see them penned up at Marine World. I don't think they live as long in captivity and quality of life is not so hot either. :(

  3. Gotta love baby whales!

  4. We see a lot of whales when we drive home from work. We pass the ocean, but not Orcas, unfortunately! I've always loved Orcas.

    I even had a song called Orca, Bringer of Death, when I was a rock star!!! LOL!!

  5. Can't help but feel sorry for L7, being such a square and all!


    I'd love to see these guys in the wild.

  6. Julie - whales live a surprisingly long time if all goes well for them; I believe the marine biologist told us up to 70 years!!

    Claire - I used to love seeing those shows when I was a kid, but now it just seems cruel to make them perform.

    Brian - "Nebraska please". lol

    Axe - you are lucky you get to see them from shore!!

    Mark - huh????

  7. Anonymous10:46 AM

    JoJo-Once again you have given us a beautiful picture and story to go with it. I love the Orca's also and the baby is adorable. Still think you should do a book with all these interesting things in it as well as your comments. Jean

  8. Jean - Thanks *blush*. :)

  9. jojo...ya know, i think that you missed your real calling in shoulda been a writer for national geographic.
    loved the pix and the explanations

  10. They are adorable, big or small. I just wish humans were kinder and more considerate to all life on the planet.

  11. Anonymous3:25 PM

    How wonderful! I went whale watching when I was in Vancouver, but only got a picture of an apparent large slab of grey in the water that we were assured was a whale. I had to buy a postcard of the Orca's I was longing to see ;0)

  12. Yay for whales!All I have ever seen at my coastal spots are freaking jellyfish!

    But they do have that smiley quality that makes me all gooey inside with happiness,kind of like my dogs who "smile".

  13. Anonymous5:26 PM

    Yes, the orcas are outstanding! I got to touch one at Sea World once--best I could do since the whales were off south the last time I was in Victoria.

  14. jojo... a wonderful post; you always have something so interesting to tell us. I missed out on seeing whales in South Africa and they are hardly a common sight in our waters.

  15. You never heard the expression "Don't be such an L-7!"??

    The Sixties, man...

    Okay. Hold up your thumb and index fingers on one hand in the shape of an L and on the other the shape of a 7. Put them together. Forms a square. Don't be such an L-7, man...

    You dig?

  16. L-7 ahaha!! that is hilarious!

    this is a great post, she's right you should put all your stuff together into a book, and you should sell your beadwork think of all the fun you'd have and still make a living;)

  17. Beautiful post JoJo!

    Just taking (another) break, btw, thanks tho' :-)

  18. I've never seen an Orca in the wild,another thing on my "To Do" list. I do remember seeing one at a safari park when I was a kid though,before I knew any better I guess.

  19. Ya just want to get in and swim with them! (But probably not!)

  20. Anonymous7:08 PM

    Thanks for another great and informative blog!

  21. JoJo, is there an I-pod?