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Orca born, giving hope to critically endangered species

PORT GAMBLE, Wash. — A new southern resident killer whale was spotted alongside its mother Friday, becoming the first calf born to the critically endangered species and seen alive since 2015.

Scientists with the Center for Whale Research confirmed to Q13 News an orca calf was spotted alongside L77, its mother. The calf appeared healthy, said Center for Whale Research Founder Ken Balcomb.

Balcomb guessed the calf was a few weeks old. The calf and mother were spotted with the L pod traveling north outside of Admiralty Inlet.

L77 is a 31-year-old female with two previous calves. The new calf will be designated L124. It’s sex was not immediately known.

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