Sign up for our Free email Newsletter
and get all the latest wildlife news!
Choose:

Browse Old Articles


BROCHURE RACK

Rare White Killer Whale Spotted in Alaskan Waters

13/03/2008 14:43:29 news/white-orca[1]
March 2008. Scientists conducting research in the North Pacific have sighted a very rare white Killer whale, or Orca. The white killer whale was spotted with its pod about two miles off Kanaga Volcano, part of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands. At the time, Kodiak-based ship Oscar Dyson was on a research expedition for The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), assessing pollock fish stocks near Steller sea lion haulout sites.
 
White killer whale with pod off Alaska's Aleutian Islands. © NOAA.
Holly Fearnbach, a research biologist from NOAA was able to photograph the whale’s white fin and back. ‘With hundreds of killer whales documented around the Aleutian Islands, this was equivalent to finding a needle in a haystack,’ she said.

Few white killer whales have ever been seen, much less scientifically documented. This whale is likely not a true albino because it still has signs of darker pigmented areas on its body. However, because of its prominent colouring, the white whale serves as an indicator for movements of killer whales in the North Pacific.
 
 
 
 
White killer whale with pod off Alaska's Aleutian Islands. © NOAA.
Previous Sightings
White killer whales have been sighted previously in the Aleutian Islands as well as in the Bering Sea and off the Russian coast. Scientists are working to confirm whether or not this whale is the same animal as any of those previous seen.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 70 countries and the European Commission to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects.

Read the comments about this article and leave your own comment

Rare White Killer Whale Spotted in Alaskan Waters

Please correct your headline and article. Orcas are NOT and never have been whales no matter what colour or colours they show up wearing. An Orca is the largest species of dolphin.
It really behooves a website like this to correctly identify the wildlife being written about.

Thank you for your attention to this.

Posted by: Lani | 14 Nov 2013 00:12:39

rare whit killer whale spotted in alaskan waters

i think its wierd to see a white orca but it might not be and orca its probally a differant type of whale judging by the fin it it most likely to be an orca whale

Posted by: orcawatcher | 23 Aug 2009 15:40:06

SUPER WHALE.

Posted by: KIRAN | 06 Apr 2009 13:50:50

To post a comment you must be logged in.
CLICK HERE TO LOG IN AND POST A COMMENT

New user? Register here

 

Click join and we will email you with your password. You can then sign on and join the discussions right away.