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Protecting Orca by Restoring Salmon

Restoring Columbia Basin salmon is a key to orca survival

The tremendous salmon recovery potential in the Snake and Columbia Rivers and their tributaries makes this basin a top priority for rebuilding the Chinook salmon populations our endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales need to survive and recover.

With just 78 whales remaining in the wild, the Northwest’s Southern Resident Killer Whales are among our nation’s most endangered species. The leading cause of decline: lack of sufficient prey resources – Chinook salmon. With its historic productivity, low human population, and remaining pockets of large, high, pristine and well protected habitat, the Columbia and Snake River Basin represents our nation’s best opportunity to restore the large numbers of Chinook salmon that endangered, hungry orcas need to survive and recover.



Protecting Orca by Restoring Salmon Articles

November 17, 2019

Seattle Times: New drone, underwater footage of orcas stuns researchers, gives…

in News
New drone, underwater footage of orcas stuns researchers, gives intimate look at killer whales’ family life. By Lynda V. Mapes, Seattle Times environment reporterNov. 5, 2019 Who knew orcas were so playful, so full of affection, so constantly touching one… Read More
September 19, 2019

CBB: NOAA Fisheries proposes expanding critical habitat for killer whales from…

in News
September 19, 2019 NOAA Fisheries is proposing to expand critical habitat for Southern Resident killer whales along the West Coast, based on information about their coastal range and habitat use. The proposal would extend critical habitat for the whales along… Read More

Sep 16, 2019 - NY Times: How Long Before These Salmon Are Gone? ‘Maybe 20 Years’

Sep 10, 2019 - Chinook Observer: Editorial - Only smart, honest policies stand in the way of extinction

Sep 4, 2019 - Daily Kos: Endangered orcas' fate is tied to a series of dams 400 miles inland

Sep 4, 2019 - Daily Kos: The politics of starving orcas - Why human folly is killing off an endangered population

Aug 26, 2019 - Action Alert - Contact Washington State leaders today - "Salmon and orca need help today!"

Aug 15, 2019 - Seattle Times: Both orca babies are alive, and all 3 southern resident pods have been spotted in Canadian waters

Aug 13, 2019 - Crosscut: A new film argues Lower Snake dams make life worse for salmon, orcas and everyone in the PNW

Aug 7, 2019 - Seattle Times: Three southern resident orcas missing, presumed dead

Aug 7, 2019 - KUOW: Orca population drops as 3 more killer whales presumed dead

Aug 7, 2019 - Seattle Times: Where are the salmon and the orcas? Tribe, scientists grapple with unprecedented disappearance in Washington waters  

Jul 31, 2019 - Gazette-Tribune: In support of salmon recovery, Ecology seeks feedback on proposed rule changes

Jul 31, 2019 - Lewiston Morning Tribune: Study, Breaching dams would pay off

Jul 26, 2019 - Wild Salmon & Steelhead News - July 2019

Jul 16, 2019 - Seattle Times: Mother orca Tahlequah and her dead calf, one year later. How did she change the conversation?

Jul 15, 2019 - KOMO News: Two southern resident orcas are missing, feared dead

Jul 14, 2019 - Seattle Times: The great salmon mystery, Scientists go to unprecedented lengths to find out where chinook go

Jul 11, 2019 - Crosscut: Flush with cash, WA should invest in orcas now

Jun 11, 2019 - Union Bulletin: With or without dams, we are in this together

Jun 4, 2019 - Mountain Journal: Collapse of Salmon And Steelhead A Dam Shame

May 20, 2019 - Q13 Fox: Endangered orca J17’s health in dramatic decline

May 14, 2019 - Seattle Times: Canada’s new protections for orcas go a little further than new legislation in Washington state    

May 5, 2019 - GiveBIG 2019 is on Wednesday, May 8 - make your pledge today!

Apr 22, 2019 - Crosscut: Will limits on fishing free up salmon for starving orcas?

Apr 22, 2019 - Seattle Times: Gov. Jay Inslee’s orca-recovery agenda advancing, but billion-dollar funding yet to be seen

Apr 17, 2019 - Chinook Observer Editorial: Orcas should be allies not enemies in salmon efforts

Apr 9, 2019 - Seattle Times: Groups sue to restrict salmon fishing, help Northwest orcas

Apr 9, 2019 - Crosscut: WA lawmakers pass on whale-watching ban aimed at helping orcas

Mar 18, 2019 - Everett Herald Editorial: What look at Snake dams can mean for orcas and us

Mar 15, 2019 - CBB: More Salmon/Steelhead To Columbia River Than Last Year, But Forecasts Mixed Among Species 

Mar 15, 2019 - CBB: Salmon Fishing Rules Off NW Coast To Be Guided By Need To Protect Low Numbers Of Chinook 

Mar 15, 2019 - CBB: Ocean Conditions Appear To Be Heading In Right Direction For Improving Salmon-Steelhead Runs 

Mar 13, 2019 - InvestigateWest: Legislature, Inslee Struggle to Fix Roads that Block Salmon, Help Starving Orca

Mar 8, 2019 - Seattle Times: Feds could restrict Pacific Ocean fishing over endangered orcas, NOAA letter says

Feb 24, 2019 - Seattle Times: Hunger, the Decline of Salmon Adds to the Struggle of Puget Sound’s Orca

Feb 22, 2019 - CBB: Very Low Spring Chinook Forecasted Return Prompts Limits on Recreational Fishing 

Feb 22, 2019 - CBB: NW Power/Conservation Council Hears Details On Flexible Spill Agreement To Aid Juvenile Salmonids 

Feb 22, 2019 - Q13 Fox: To help salmon migrate, state looks to spill more over dams

Feb 13, 2019 - The Spokesman-Review: Diverse group of outdoor enthusiasts urges Legislature to fully fund the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

Feb 1, 2019 - Seattle Times: Washington state to regulate federal dams on Columbia, Snake to cool hot water, aid salmon

Feb 1, 2019 - Seattle PI: 'Fish flush' could be part of orca and salmon recovery

Feb 1, 2019 - OPB: To Help Orcas Catch More Salmon, Washington Plans To Increase Spill At Dams

Jan 30, 2019 - The Spokesman Review: Salmon and orcas linked, Legislature told

Jan 30, 2019 - Outside Magazine: Washington's Bold Plan to Save Its Orcas

Jan 30, 2019 - National Wildlife Federation Blog - Can We All Agree? A Baby Orca Needs to Eat

Jan 25, 2019 - Lewiston Morning Tribune: Dam issues reach both sides of the river

Jan 23, 2019 - CTV News: Scientists suggest new threat to endangered B.C. orcas: pink salmon

Jan 3, 2019 - Seattle Times: 2 more Puget Sound orcas predicted to die in critically endangered population

Dec 23, 2018 - Save Our wild Salmon's 2018 year-in-review - and look ahead!

Dec 23, 2018 - Spokesman-Review Guest Opinion: Time for BPA to act on dams

Dec 23, 2018 - Yakima-Herald Saturday soapbox: To help the orcas, and improve salmon runs, remove the dams

Dec 20, 2018 - Tri-City Herald:  Opponents call new dam agreement to help salmon ‘worse than useless’

Dec 20, 2018 - Lewiston Tribune: Salmon deal to add more spillage at region’s dams. Oregon, Washington and Nez Perce Tribe reach agreement over fish passage operations

Dec 20, 2018 - Seattle Times: Changes to dams on Columbia, Snake rivers to benefit salmon, hydropower and orcas

Dec 20, 2018 - OPB: Dam Agreement Aims To Help More Salmon Survive Columbia River Journey

Dec 20, 2018 - Tri-City Herald: If Snake River dams are breached, what would happen? We must get our message out

Dec 14, 2018 - Spokesman-Review: Inslee task force would study possible dam breaching to help salmon, orcas

Nov 25, 2018 - Lewiston Morning Tribune: For endangered orcas, it's the hunger games

Nov 19, 2018 - Q13 Fox: Orca task force finalizes plan to save endangered southern resident killer whales

Nov 19, 2018 - Tri-City Herald: State task force names 36 ways to save orcas. What does that mean for tearing down the dams?

Nov 19, 2018 - Seattle PI: Urgent, controversial orca whale recovery steps go to Inslee

Nov 19, 2018 - Seattle Time: Orca task force recommends whale-watching moratorium, studying dam removal to help endangered mammals

Nov 19, 2018 - Everett Herald Editorial: Solutions for saving our salmon and orcas

Nov 19, 2018 - Crosscut - The Orca Task Force finally has a plan. Will it work?

Nov 18, 2018 - Call Governor Inslee Today: "Secure funding for the lower Snake River stakeholder forum!"

Nov 16, 2018 - For Immediate Release: Orca Recovery Task Force calls for urgent action to increase Columbia-Snake river chinook salmon populations, among its recommendations for Governor Inslee to protect critically endangered orcas from extinction.

Nov 13, 2018 - Seattle Times Special Report: Orcas thrive in waters to the north. Why are Puget Sound’s dying?

Nov 13, 2018 - An update on orca and salmon protection efforts (11.11.18)

Nov 9, 2018 - KOMO News: Suspending whale-watching tours, breaching dams recommended to save orcas

Nov 9, 2018 - The Daily Astorian: Guest column - Orcas, fishermen are both endangered species, four low-value Snake River dams should be removed

Nov 2, 2018 - The Columbia Basin Bulletin: Independent Science Review off Salmon Survival Study Shows Concern Over Low Smolt-To-Adult Returns 

Oct 25, 2018 - Orca/Salmon Alert - 5-day comment period closes TODAY (Oct. 29) - Act now!

Oct 22, 2018 - Q13 Fox: Calls to breach Snake River dams to save Northwest orcas grow louder

Oct 15, 2018 - Seattle Times: Southern resident orcas that frequent Puget Sound may not survive without breaching the Lower Snake River dams to help the salmon the orcas live on, scientists say.

Oct 15, 2018 - Q13-FOX: Snake River dams drive wedge between farmers and orca champions

Oct 15, 2018 - Street Root News: Save the orcas: Protesters want Snake River dams breached

Oct 1, 2018 - SIGN THE PETITION: Endangered orca and salmon need bold action now!

Sep 26, 2018 - The Seattle Times: Another southern resident orca is ailing — and at least three whales are pregnant

Sep 17, 2018 - Seattle Times: Attendees criticized NOAA for coordinating the now-canceled rescue effort of the orca J50 with SeaWorld, the entertainment park that had for decades profited from capturing the animals for use in its aquariums.

Sep 14, 2018 - Seattle Times: Orca J50 presumed dead but NOAA continues search

Sep 9, 2018 - Spokesman Review: More than 600 turn out for Snake River protest Saturday

Sep 4, 2018 - Seattle Times: Concern over endangered orcas blows up approval of Trans Mountain pipeline in Canada

Aug 28, 2018 - The Stranger: Giving up Chinook Is a Nice Idea but It Will Not Save the Orcas

Aug 28, 2018 - HCN Opinion: Orcas need more than sympathy and prayers

Aug 27, 2018 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Orca Salmon Alliance distributes ribbons urging unity and #BoldActionNow; creates wreath honoring J35 and her daughter.

Aug 11, 2018 - Seattle Times: ‘I am sobbing’: Mother orca still carrying her dead calf — 16 days later

Aug 11, 2018 - Ailing orca J50 looking better than expected, but still in ‘critical’ condition as rescue operation continues

Aug 6, 2018 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Orca Salmon Alliance delivers 43,000+ public comments to Governor Inslee and the Southern Resident Recovery Task Force

Aug 6, 2018 - For Immediate Release: SOS Statement on the Southern Resident orcas, Orca Task Force and Governor Inslee

Aug 2, 2018 - NYT: Grieving Orca Carries Dead Calf for More Than 3 Days: ‘She’s Just Not Letting Go’

Aug 2, 2018 - Washington Post: An orca calf died shortly after being born. Her grieving mother has carried her body for days.

Jul 31, 2018 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Orca Salmon Alliance Mourns Recent Orca Losses – Calls for Urgent Action

Jul 30, 2018 - Seattle Times: Grieving mother orca falling behind family as she carries dead calf for a seventh day

Jul 30, 2018 - Seattle Times: We won't give up as long as she doesn't—Orca mother carries dead calf for fourth day

Jul 30, 2018 - Q13 Fox: Inslee voices support for short-term action on orcas as long-term decisions loom

Jul 30, 2018 - Seattle Times: For third day, grieving orca carries dead calf in water

Jul 30, 2018 - Huffington Post: Grieving Mother Orca Whale Carries Dead Calf For Days

Jul 25, 2018 - Seattle Times: Southern-resident killer whales lose newborn calf, and another youngster is ailing

Jul 24, 2018 - NOAA Fisheries & WDFW: Prioritizing West Coast Chinook salmon stocks for Southern Resident killer whale recovery

Jul 24, 2018 - Seattle Times: Struggling orcas heavily rely on urban chinook from Seattle-area rivers, new analysis shows

Jul 9, 2018 - New York Times: Orcas of the Pacific Northwest are Starving and Disappearing

Jun 28, 2018 - Puget Sound Recovery Caucus: Puget Sound Recovery Caucus introduces “National Orca Protection Month” resolution

Jun 28, 2018 - Alison Morrow: What wildlife need from us—awareness 

Jun 25, 2018 - Crosscut: Why do we keep loving our orcas — to death?

Jun 18, 2018 - Seattle Times: Orca death brings southern resident whale population to lowest level in 34 years

Jun 1, 2018 - Seattle Times: Inslee calls Canada pipeline ‘profoundly damaging,’ fears for orcas in surprise deal

Jun 1, 2018 - Seattle Times: Gov. Inslee: Canada’s unneighborly pipeline deal threatens orcas and climate

May 16, 2018 - Wild Salmon & Steelhead News – May/June 2018 issue

Apr 19, 2018 - Seattle Times: Southern-resident killer whales’ inbreeding may devastate the population

Mar 29, 2018 - For Immediate Release: 

Washington Voters Value Wild Salmon Over Lower Snake River Dams

Mar 14, 2018 - For Immediate Release: Orca and salmon advocates welcome Governor Inslee’s creation of an emergency orca task force

Mar 14, 2018 - Seattle Times: Critically endangered orcas have governor’s, tribe’s attention

Mar 3, 2018 - Wild Salmon & Steelhead News - February/March 2018

Mar 1, 2018 - Tri- City Herald: Decision on Snake dam removal has Murray and Newhouse at odds

Feb 4, 2018 - US News and World Report: State Bills Tackle Threats to Endangered Puget Sound Orcas

Feb 4, 2018 - OPB: Endangered Orcas Are Starving. Should We Start Feeding Them?

Jan 27, 2018 - Seattle Times: Environmental impact of salmon decline: This isn’t just about fish

Jan 4, 2018 - Could Slower Ships Help the Orcas?

Dec 10, 2017 - Associated Press: Washington governor opposes House bill on Columbia, Snake River dams

Dec 10, 2017 - CBB: Agencies Outline NEPA/EIS Progress Evaluating Columbia/Snake River Uses, Improvements For Fish

Dec 5, 2017 - December 5, 2017: Governor Inslee issues statement opposing harmful HR 3144

Nov 14, 2017 - Where have all Puget Sound’s orcas gone?

Nov 9, 2017 - Defenders of Wildlife: Wild Without End - Orcas in a Tight Spot

Nov 5, 2017 - Seattle PI: Orca whales need Chinook salmon, losing same

Nov 2, 2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Twenty-five conservation organizations and business associations call on Governor Inslee to act quickly to help salmon and orca

Oct 27, 2017 - Seattle Times: Orcas headed to extinction unless we get them more chinook and quieter waters, report says

Oct 8, 2017 - NWPR: Puget Sound's Southern Resident Orca Population Drops To 30-Year Low

Sep 25, 2017 - NRDC: New Study Offers Way Out of Hot Water & Salmon Crisis

Jul 20, 2017 - South Whidbey Record: UW study pins orca pregnancy problems on lack of salmon

Jul 17, 2017 - Oceana: Study: endangered orcas are losing their unborn babies because they’re starving

Jul 10, 2017 - Idaho Statesman: Fate of Pacific Northwest orcas tied to having enough Columbia River salmon

Jun 29, 2017 - Seattle Times: A new study nails dearth of chinook salmon as the primary cause of the endangered resident orca whale’s failure to rebound.

Apr 26, 2017 - AP: Tribes sue Coast Guard over tanker-traffic risk to orcas

Mar 24, 2017 - The Stranger: Is Anyone Going to Save the Endangered Killer Whales in Puget Sound Before It's Too Late?

Jan 25, 2017 - Hawaii Magazine, Coastal Science and Societies: What Happens When an Endangered Whale Pod Loses its Wise Old Grandma?

Jan 2, 2017 - Tri-Cities Herard Letter to the Editor: On orcas, ask an expert

Jan 2, 2017 - KING5-TV: Vigils Held for Southern Resident Orcas

Dec 22, 2016 - KOMO NEWS: Endangered southern resident orca found dead off Canadian coast

Dec 13, 2016 - Oil tankers could doom Puget Sound’s orcas

Nov 30, 2016 - Truthout Report: Without Major Interventions, the Orca's Days Are Numbered

Oct 30, 2016 - KOMO News: 'It's a sad day:' Researchers claim Puget Sound orcas are starving and dying

Oct 28, 2016 - Seattle Times: Another Puget Sound orca dies; hope dim for her calf

Jun 25, 2016 - The orcas are starving

Jun 6, 2016 - Orca and Salmon - An Evening of Storytelling

Jun 2, 2016 - NRDC Blog: To Save Orcas, First Save Salmon

Jun 2, 2016 - Defenders Magazine: Looking for a Sound Solution

May 31, 2016 - Orca Month 2016 Calendar of Events

May 31, 2016 - Orca Month 2016

Mar 31, 2016 - Seattle Times Guest Opinion: Hungry killer whales waiting for Columbia River salmon

Jan 24, 2016 - Seattle Times: Puget Sound orca numbers rise fast after 30-year low in 2014

Dec 7, 2015 - CBC: Orca baby boom: 7th calf born to endangered southern resident population

Nov 16, 2015 - To save the orcas, do we need to demolish dams?

Nov 4, 2015 - Huff Post: Newborn Orca 'Baby Boom' Depends Upon Our Breaching Deadbeat Dams

Oct 27, 2015 - Daily Astorian Editorial: Orcas growing factor in Columbia River salmon management

Oct 22, 2015 - Skagit Valley Herald: New alliance has big goals for salmon, orca recovery

Oct 22, 2015 - KOMO TV: Interview with Dr. Carl Safina on the Orca-Salmon Connection

Oct 22, 2015 - Seattle Times: Puget Sound’s killer whales looking good

Sep 16, 2015 - Intertwined Fates: The Orca-Salmon Connection in the Northwest

Aug 21, 2015 - Patagonia's The Cleanest Line: Save Money, Save Salmon, Save Mike: Free the Snake

Jun 17, 2015 - Nat Geo Guest Blog: Breach the Snake River Dams

Jun 5, 2015 - The Daily Astorian: Orcas back at Columbia River as 2015 tracking ends

May 21, 2015 - WDC Guest Blog: Southern Resident Orcas and the Snake River

Apr 1, 2015 - Seattle Times: Orca baby boom continues with discovery of fourth calf

Mar 4, 2015 - Seattle Times: Researchers tracking killer whales took this video of a new calf from the endangered orca population

Mar 4, 2015 - Chinook Observer: Animal roundup: Baby orca leads a parade of returning species

Mar 4, 2015 - Chinook Observer: Baby orca in the Columbia River plume this week

Feb 28, 2015 - Guest Opinion: Survival of endangered orcas in the Salish Sea depends on restoring chinook

Feb 23, 2015 - Lewiston Tribune: Whale concerns prompt dam petition

Feb 20, 2015 - Kitsap Sun: K and L pods under observation as they travel south in ocean

Feb 18, 2015 - Islander Weekly: Dam removal initiative finds footing in DC

Dec 20, 2014 - Seattle Times: Ten years after ESA listing, killer whale numbers falling

Dec 16, 2014 - CBS News: Pregnant killer whale J-32 was starving, necropsy reveals

Oct 22, 2014 - Seattle Times: 7-week-old baby orca missing, presumed dead

Sep 2, 2014 - Associated Press: Orca population in Puget Sound falling

Jul 7, 2014 - KING 5 TV: Orca expert's dire warning about Puget Sound orcas

Feb 2, 2014 - New study connects Puget Sound orcas and Columbia Basin salmon

Jan 15, 2014 - Orca advocates, businesses and scientists call on Governor Inslee to take action to rebuild endangered chinook salmon stocks

Apr 10, 2013 - Watching Our Waterways: Orca tracking project comes to an end for now

Mar 5, 2013 - Revealing new data shows killer whales' affinity for the Columbia River mouth

Jun 28, 2012 - Saving Salmon to Save Orcas

Jun 21, 2010 - June is Orca Month - Check out the new video on salmon and orcas

Dec 29, 2009 - Orcas and Salmon Roundup by Howard Garrett: Will The Present Administration Act In Behalf Of Orcas And Salmon?

Dec 1, 2009 - "Commercial Fisheries, Salmon, and Orcas" - by Candace Calloway Whiting in the Seattle PI's City Brights

Nov 17, 2009 - "River of Renewal"- Salmon, Dams, Orcas, and You

Jun 10, 2009 - June is Orca Awareness Month!

Mar 2, 2009 - Saving Snake River salmon will save Puget Sound killer whales

May 2, 2008 - Seattle Times Guest columnists: Connect the dots to save orcas, salmon

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