28 Mar '12, 3am

Is the U.S. Navy Accidentally Bombing Killer Whales?

© Cascadia Research Collective Last month, the body of a 3-year-old killer whale washed ashore in Long Beach, Washington, bearing injuries which indicate it had suffered severe trauma. While its exact cause of death may never be known for certain, one biologist who examined the orca says he believes the animal's fatal wounds were the result of an explosion -- leading some to suspect that ongoing training exercises by the U.S. Navy in the orca's critical habitat are inadvertently blowing up endangered killer whales. The dead orca, labeled L112, belongs to a protected killer whale population known as Southern Residents , of which as few as 87 individuals remain in waters off of Washington State and Canada. Yet despite this fact, and their listing as an endangered species, the U.S. and Canadian Navies routinely detonate bombs and use sonar in the orca's narrow habitat, both o...

Full article: http://www.treehugger.com/ocean-conservation/us-navy-acci...

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