Kayak the humpback whale was found dead on a Haida Gwaii beach on Saturday, May 15, 2021. (Marine Education and Research Society)

Kayak the humpback whale was found dead on a Haida Gwaii beach on Saturday, May 15, 2021. (Marine Education and Research Society)

Kayak the humpback whale found dead on Haida Gwaii beach

Whale was estimated to be only 18 years old

A humpback whale has been found dead on a Haida Gwaii beach, according to the Marine Education and Research Society.

In a social media post Saturday (May 15), the society said that the whale, named Kayak, was found dead that day near the mouth of the Tlell River.

Kayak, otherwise known as BCX0977, was given her nickname after a society member noticed a distinctive marking on her side that looked like a person in a kayak.

Kayak had been sighted in many places previously; around northeast Vancouver Island, southeast Alaska, the Salish Sea, the Central Coast and around southwest Vancouver Island. She even went as far as Hawaii.

Sightings of the whale, believed to be around 18 years old, have been recorded as far back as 2004. She measured 14 metres at the time of her death, and had a calf in 2014 and possibly in 2020. While the average of lifespan of a humpback whale isn’t known, the society said some have been known to live as long as 80 years.

“What killed her? We don’t know. If a necropsy is done, it could reveal if there was blunt force trauma from collision, or an infection, and/or if she was pregnant. But it could be that she is too decayed for a necropsy to lead to any useful observations,” the society said.

“That is all we know of Kayak’s story. May we think of whales as individuals who have journeyed far, who have histories, and whose lineage has been impacted by human values.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Haida GwaiiWhales

Just Posted

Victoria Truth Centre and Long-term Inmates Now in the Community (L.I.N.C.) Society are hoping to replicate in Langford the format used on Emma’s Farm in Mission, pictured here. (Patrick Penner/Black Press Media)
Victoria Truth Centre hopes to grow transformative justice in Langford

Purchase proposal would see offenders, survivors and families work on organic vegetable farm

Improving safety at Keating Cross Road and the Pat Bay Highway is the goal of the flyover project currently in the works. The province aims to reveal the final cost and design this fall. (Screencap/Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)
Final budget, design of Keating flyover in Central Saanich still in the works

Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure says information coming by this fall

Tyson Muzzillo, regional manager of BC Cannabis Store, welcomes shoppers to their Uptown location, opening on June 16. (Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)
Government-run cannabis store opening at Saanich’s Uptown

BC Cannabis Store the first for government in Greater Victoria, 27th in province

Mural artist Paul Archer will soon begin work on a piece on the rear of a building at 100 Burnside Road West. (Gorge Tillicum Community Association)
Back of Burnside building in Saanich to feature mural of hope and positivity

Artist Paul Archer says subject will inspire memories, depict children’s future, sunshine, flowers

The stretch of trail north of Royal Bay Secondary connecting to Painters Trail at Murray’s Pond will be closed temporarily this week for invasive species removal. (Black Press Media file photo)
Colwood trail behind Royal Bay Secondary temporarily closed for invasive species removal

Cloure in effect from 9 a.m. Wednesday to 10 a.m. Friday this week

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

Graeme Roberts, who was mayor of Nanaimo from 1984-86, died this month at age 89. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Community Archives)
City of Nanaimo flags at half-mast as former mayor Graeme Roberts dies at 89

‘Giant-killer’ beat out Frank Ney in mayoral election in 1984

Most Read