© The Orca Ocean
   In the Mid 1940's, a white killer whale was being reported around Vancover Island, BC regularly. The sightings were arranged by Cliffard Carol who named the whale 'Alice.' She was usually reported seen with whales of normal color. It was rumored, around 1950 another white killer whale was spotted in the group and the origional Alice had seen to have dissapeared.
    Durring the 1950's, only a single white calf was reported. In January of 1958, a group of killer whales was photographed close to shore in Victoria. The photos showed a white killer whale swimming with the others.
     There were no records of Alice's pod in the 1960's, but in 1970 a pod was netted at Pedder Bay, including a single white whale. The adult female of the pod was identified as T2 (Pointed-Nose Cow), her son identified as T1 (CharlieChin),
                                                                                 another adult female indentified as T3(Scarred-Jaw Cow), her
                                                                                 white daughter T4 (Chimo), and another female as T5 (Nootka).
                                                                                      The photographs from 1958 were studdied along with the
                                                                                 ones of the new white whale. They were determined not to be the
                                                                                 same white whale in the photos. It was likely Alice died after 1958
                                                                                 and Chimo was born in the mid 1960's. Then again, what are the
                                                                                 odds of one pod having two seperate white orcas?
                                                                                      Chimo, as the white killer whale was named, was also called
                                                                                 the "Million Dollar Whale" and wrongfully called "Moby Dick" in
                                                                                 some books. Record crouds came to see the amazing white
                                                                                 whale. Aquariums offered a million dollars for her and shortly
                                                                                 after capture, Chimo was moved to an aquarium in Victoria.
                                                                                 Nookta was also moved to many aquariums and eventually ended
                                                                                 up at Sea World, California where she died in 1990.
     Chimo's fame was to be shorter lived then that of her family. She died two and one-half years after her capture. She had Chediak-Higashi Syndrome. This inherited syndrome is also known to be in humans. It causes albinism, susceptibility of infections, feavers, and a short life expectancy.
      Want to know how getting a white killer whale is possible on a genetic level? Visit the Orca Information section and click on Orca Biology II: Genetics.
© T.Sinclair
Orca Information | Orca Media | Orcas in Captivity

Reports & Essays | Web Links | Awards | E-Mail