After years of pressure to set the Miami Seaquarium orca free, Lolita was scheduled to spend her final days in her natural habitat sometime next year. On Friday, she died of a "renal condition."
New research suggests that vocal fry among toothed whales is what gives them the ability to echolocate, hunting down their prey with the loudest sounds produced by any animal on the planet.
Orca moms spent precious resources feeding their fully grown adult male offspring. A new study finds that this may limit how many more young they produce.
What began as a moment of joy ended in tragedy when the infant died last week. Since then its mother has refused to let go, holding her child tightly in what experts call a moving expression of grief.
The calf was the first to be born in the endangered pod of Pacific Northwest killer whales in three years.
Historical photos show fishermen with chinooks almost as tall as they are. A century's worth of dam-building, overfishing, habitat loss and hatcheries has cut the size of the average fish in half.
Killer whales are one of only three species known to have menopause. Researchers are looking at the conflict and cooperation between older and younger female whales to understand why.
Tilikum was estimated to be 36 years old and had been in declining health for months. In 2010, he killed a SeaWorld trainer; a documentary about the incident led to outcry over orca captivity.
In 2010, Tilikum killed SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau. Her death and SeaWorld's treatment of its orcas were at the center of the 2013 documentary Blackfish.