Thursday, February 19, 2009

Read this headline

(This one)

and see if you agree that using a different word would have avoided a rather unfortunate word juxtaposition.

Yeah... at first glance, I was thinking more "OMG, carnage in the neonate unit" than "nice good-news story".

Update, Feb 25th: the federal government just legislated more protection for these killers murderers orcs beautiful endangered animals.


  1. Thank you for that laugh. I needed it!

  2. Welcome, Tina! I'm glad you liked it!

  3. I have lol for that headline! That will surely catch some attention!

  4. maybe it's because I'm a native westcoaster, but I don't get it. Like "baby killer"? hmm. I guess that is odd.

  5. Albatross, I LOLed at your lol.

    IS, yeah, it's the fact that the first few words are "Two new baby killer...", making me wonder if the next words were going to be "on the loose in metro Vancouver".

  6. I understood that this is good news, but I cannot help myself and think that 2 new baby orcas in a year/season is just not very much. I mean, I know things are not going so well with population densities in the oceans, but I thought there would be like hundreds of orca's, having like tens of babies each year ... And then I realized "oh but this is just the families living at (near) Victoria, but then the article mentioned California, and now I am schocked???
    I guess writing about pop. densities of millions of bacteria changed my perspectives ...

  7. I laughed so loud at that! So loud that Dr. Man came in to see what was so funny!

  8. Nina, yeah, it's not very many. I read a few years ago that while orca populations are coming back up in lots of places, they are going down in areas with intensive whale watching - like off Victoria. Either due to stress causing low fertility, or whales moving away from all the zodiaks. Seriously, when you fly over on the float plane, you can see pods of whales surrounded by dozens of boats. They follow government guidelines blah blah blah... This is the reason why I will never go whale watching (although I have seen orcas from the ferry more than once -always very special. And I would LOVE to see some from a kayak, although I think I'd be pretty scared!).

    Amanda, always happy to raise a smile!

  9. Aha, I KNEW these whalewatching tours were killing them, even when government blabla...
    I once had this nightmare about being in a kayak somewhere out there and this huge whale attacking me ... but yeah, it would be quite spectacular!

  10. Maybe you saw that video (later shown to be fake) of the whale capsizing the kayak!

    (The shark one was real though).

    I have this book, which includes a section on sea mammals. Apparently there are no verified accounts of orcas hurting paddlers. People who have been close to orcas and grey whales report that you get the sense that orcas know exactly what and where you are, to within centimetres, and while they may show curiosity, are highly unlikely to get anywhere near a collision. Greys, though, apparently have less refined sonar, and often give the impression that they're vaguely aware that there are kayaks in the vicinity, but don't know exactly where. In those cases you need to be wary of their tails especially... don't get too close!

    The only local mammal (well, sea mammal, I'm not counting bears in camp sites) that is thought to pose a danger to kayakers is the sea lion. They are really playful, and there's the risk that they'll want to push you out of the cockpit to play with you!

    Having said that, a kayak instructor/guide I used to know told me a story about a group of kayakers rafting up to watch orcas, and suddenly having a terrified seal breach out of the water and land across the front of 2 of the kayaks. The orcas were hunting the seal... they had to sacrifice the seal by pushing it back into the water to avoid having a pod of hungry orcas come looking for their dinner!

    But obviously he might have been full of shit.

  11. old study species! And the J pod. I know someone who was bit in the butt by a sea lion when they were "hanging off the rear" of the boat taking care of some buisness.

  12. Yikes! That sounds incredibly painful, those guys have big teeth.


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