A sperm whale is spotted in Johnstone Strait. (Jared Towers).

First sighting of sperm whale in B.C. strait

DFO scientist says whale may have been exploring new waters or looking for more food sources

A sperm whale has been spotted for the first time in Johnstone Strait off Vancouver Island.

Jared Towers, a cetologist with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, says Lisa Larsson from Orcalab, a whale research station in the Inside Passage, first heard and recorded the animal in the strait on Monday.

“We knew the sperm whale was there before we saw it because we were listening to it,” Towers says.

“They are unmistakable,” he says. “They are probably the most unique-looking of all the whales.”

Towers says it’s possible the sperm whale was exploring new waters or looking for additional food sources.

“One has to remember that the species was heavily hit by whalers in the early 1900s.”

Sperm whales were detected in Johnstone Strait in February 1984 by researcher John Ford, who had acoustic recordings of the mammal, but this is the first time the animal has been seen.

READ MORE: Orcas off B.C. coast surprise prawn fishermen

READ MORE: B.C. man captures images of large orca pod near Sechelt

Just Posted

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

Penticton sucker punch will net 1-2 years in jail

Joshua Mcbride punched a man out of nowhere in downtown Penticton in August 2016

Summerland man facing 1-3 years for fight with neighbour

Joshua James Doell, facing one count of aggravated assault, is awaiting a judge’s decision

South Okanagan-Similkameen athletes geared up for B.C. Games

Kamloops 2018 BC Winter Games kick off this Thursday and 27 athletes from the region will compete

Tax dollars down the toilet

Penticton joins coalition to wipe-out flushable wipes

Hope raises thousands for two Kelowna charities

The event Hope in Her Eyes managed to raise more than $17,000 for two Kelowna non-profits

Trudeau announces two-way $1 billion investment deal with India

Some of India’s biggest companies say they will invest more than $1 billion in Canada in the coming years

’60s Scoop group educates survivors, pushes rejection of federal settlement

Federal government’s compensation proposal includes $50 million for an Indigenous Healing Foundation

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

As ‘Black Panther’ shows, inclusion pays at the box office

At the box office, inclusion is paying — and often, it’s paying off big time

Washington senator wants B.C. to follow suit and phase out net-pen fish farms

An American ban will be less effective in the shared ecosystem of the Salish Sea, senator says

Virtue and Moir end ice dance careers with Olympic gold

Virtue and Moir’s gold medal win at the Olympics makes them the world’s most decorated figure skaters

Canadians find living in small spaces teaches creativity

Canadian families choosing to live in small spaces to bring closeness to children

Most Read