KTUU, Jul 10, 2015 (emphasis added): 5 more dead whales found in Alaska waters since June; total 14 dead; Researchers try to understand mysterious whale deaths… Kate Wynne, a Marine Mammal Specialist for the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program, told Channel 2 News that since the June 18 announcement of the nine dead fin whales, four humpback whales and another fin whale have been found dead. According to Wynne, the five whales appeared to have been dead for the same amount of time as the previously discovered whales… After the first two whales were discovered… it triggered a response from numerous agencies… “The good news is that this has gotten a lot of us to talk to each other, and be alert,” Wynne said… Wynne thinks the whales may have consumed something toxic… Tests on tissue from one of the whales have proven negative for domoic acid, a biotoxin, and results on two other tests, for Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) and Cesium-137 radioactivity, are still pending.
Alaska Dispatch News, Jul 10, 2015: More whales found dead in southern Alaska waters – Scientists investigating the mysterious deaths of nine endangered fin whales… report that the death toll has increased… five additional whales — one fin whale and four humpbacks — have been reported… So far, the only sample taken from any of the dead animals… came back negative for domoic acid, a toxin that is produced by algae… Results from other tests are still pending… [Scientists] have been trying to find an explanation for the unusual event. Wynne said it’s possible the toll could still rise. “The number of now-rotten carcasses may continue to climb as more people travel around the area and submit reports of carcasses they see,” she said.
AP, Jul 11, 2015: More whale carcasses found in Gulf of Alaska… [Wynne] said it’s possible that more carcasses will be reported as people continue to travel around the area.
AP, Jul 11, 2015: Whale deaths in Gulf of Alaska puzzle scientists – More dead whales have been found in the Gulf of Alaska following the sightings of nine fin whale carcasses… five additional dead whales [were reported] over the past several weeks, including four humpbacks and one fin whale… Wynne says it’s possible that more whale carcasses could be reported soon.
CBC, Jul 11, 2015: Reports of whale carcasses off Alaska raise whale death toll to 14; Scientists don’t know what’s been killing humpback and fin whales
See also: 10 giant whales found dead in Pacific off US coast — Victims of ‘mysterious affliction’ — Mass die-off of walruses and seabirds reported nearby — Experts: “Something out of the ordinary is happening” — “Maybe whales ran into a toxin” (AUDIO)
Published: July 12th, 2015 at 11:17 pm ET