The Canadian Orca Rescue Society is calling attention to the endangered Southern Resident Orca whale population by holding a 17-day vigil in Victoria’s Inner Harbour area.
The move is symbolically linked to the plight of the grieving orca mother who carried her dead calf on her head in the Salish Sea for 17 days – but it also poses a serious call to action to Members of the Legislature.
The organization asks the public to join them in walking life-sized inflatable orcas around the inner harbour as a message to the government to protect and help the Southern Resident Orcas.
The vigil began on October 1st (and will continue til the 17th), and features activists and guest speakers suggesting the following measures to ensure the survival of the orcas:
- Increased funding for salmon hatcheries and hatchery technology
- Increased funding for salmon habitat rehabilitation
- No increase in toxic material transportation through the Salish Sea
- Orca foraging area closures with no fishing and no whale watching
- Chinook closures
- Rebuilding plans for Chinook salmon
- No increase in shipping traffic
- Slow downs and lateral displacement for ships in Juan de Fuca and Haro Strait
- Regulation of the whale watching industry and private observing vessels
- Take the fish farms out of the ocean.
Participants gather around the inner harbour and in front of the Legislature from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. every day of the vigil.