More than two dozen wildlife experts met in Seattle today to develop plans to compile and keep individual health records for each endangered orca that spends time in the waters off Vancouver Island.
The records would take existing research on the creatures and combine it in one place.
The records would be use to monitor the orcas’ health trends individually and as a population.
Understanding the factors that affect an orca’s health will help pinpoint the key threats and how to reduce them experts say.
Many details are still being worked out, including who will maintain the data and how people will access it but an initial database would be launched this summer using readily available information.
The meeting was sponsored by SeaDoc Society, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries and the National Marine Mammal Foundation.
with files from AP