It’s a blow to the Southern Resident Killer Whale population, the matriarch of J pod has died.
Ken Balcomb with the Center for Whale Research says in a statement that “Granny” – known as J2 in her pod – is missing and is presumed dead.
Balcomb writes that it’s believed Granny had been seen thousands of times over the last 40 years and most recently had been the leader.
In fact, Granny was so old, it’s not exactly known how old she was, being at least 45 years old but more likely to have been around 76 when she died.
Her death brings the Southern Resident Killer Whale population to 78, with only two dozen remaining in the J pod that Granny leaves behind.