Gasping for Breath

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From source: Two mammal-eating "transient...

From source: Two mammal-eating “transient” killer whales photographed off the south side of Unimak Island, eastern Aleutian Islands, Alaska. Magyar: Kardszárnyú delfin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As a wildlife artist, nature and wildlife are extremely important to me. I’m one of these “bleeding heart,” “tree-hugger-y” types that cannot leave a wounded or injured animal unattended. I’ve rescued or found professionals who can rehabilitate a number of animals, including a Red Necked Grebe, a Mourning Dove, a Cooper’s Hawk, a Turkey Vulture – the list goes on. Something my mom and I had very much in common. I briefly heard a part of this story yesterday in my groggy, half-sleep ear. Unfortunately, that was the last I heard of it…I also wasn’t sure what I really heard in my slumbered state. Today the story has reached a world-wide audience. It is the story of a pod of a dozen orcas or killer whales that have become stuck under the ice in a part of the Hudson’s Bay in Northern Quebec. Seeing them in this area is extremely rare at this time of year as it is mostly covered in ice. It is believed that they may have been drawn to the area during an unseasonally warm spell while they were hunting seals. As all mammals do, they need to breathe air, just like you or me, however, there is only a small hole in the ever changing arctic ice that they take turns surfacing in to breathe. This story broke only because of the advent of technology. In years past, when this would happen, it would go virtually unknown. Now, the ability to capture a story in video and post it for the world to see…bringing awareness and hopefully, aid, to these animals is at our fingertips. The virility of the amateur video posted by someone at the scene is now putting pressure on our government to take action. I’m hoping that as more people become aware of it, the increased pressure will spur them to do more. I hope that as readers, you can post this blog post or the link below to grow the collective voice that is calling for help for these animals.

The full story can be read at the Montreal Gazette.

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