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Sept 14: Reducing Vessel Impacts on Southern Resident orcas

Join us on September 14 at 7 p.m. for a virtual lecture presented by Julie Watson. FREE and open to the public.  (Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87435865523). 
The critically endangered Southern Resident Orca (also known as Southern Resident Killer Whales or SRKW) population stands at just 73 members as of the 2022 census, and they face several major threats including availability of their preferred food (Chinook salmon), contaminants in their food and environment and noise and disturbance from vessels.
Following recommendations from Governor Inslee’s Orca Task Force and major legislation in 2019, the Washington State Legislature tasked the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) with management of commercial whale watching licensing, development of rules for commercial viewing of SRKW and adaptive management of measures aimed to reduce the impact of recreational and commercial whale watching vessels on SRKW’s ability to successfully forage, communicate and rest.
This presentation describes the Department’s process for adaptive management of Washington State’s vessel regulations to better support the recovery of SRKW.
It also tells the story of the 2023 bill (SB 5371) implementing the Department’s recommendation to increase the distance buffer around SRKW, next steps to implement the bill, and the ongoing adaptive management effort.
Last modified onWednesday, 13 September 2023 01:44