There Is A New Orca On The Block

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For decades, on occasion, in the southern oceans near Chile to Antarctica, people have spotted these killer whales. For many years it was believed they were an offspring of an orca that had genetic differences. Now scientists say they are possibly a new species of orca and are calling them Type D. They are also known as the New Zealand Killer Whales, a pod washed up on the beach there in 1955, and scientists have been baffled and looking for them ever since. On occasion photos will show these elusive whales but no more evidence.

The new orcas are smaller, with a distinctly different white patch near the eye. They also have rounder heads and pointier fins. For years scientists have been looking for proof these whales exist. By the way orcas are not acutally whales but the largest of the dolphins.

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Rare photo of “type D” killer whales off South Georgia island, the whales have distinct tiny white eye patches … Courtesy of J.P. Sylvestre
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Now that they have discovered these new orcas, scientists are taking tissue samples to classify their DNA. They are either a new species or a subtype.
When they went searching for the whales, their boat was stuck at anchor for days due to weather. Once they were underway, the next morning they woke up and were surrounded by the very orcas they were looking for, the legendary “New Zealand Killer whales”.

Fish On!
Rich King

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