Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW) are listed as endangered under both Canada’s Species At Risk Act (SARA) and the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA). Recovery plans have been in place in the US and Canada since 2008. Despite the endangered listings and the recovery plans, both the U.S. and Canadian governments are failing in their obligations to protect and rebuild this population.
The failure of both governments to implement threat reduction actions or take precautionary measures has resulted in the current critical condition in which there is a higher probability that the population faces extinction. This failure has now placed the region in the position of having to undertake drastic actions to arrest the decline in population numbers and preserve the possibility of recovery.
Herein, Wild Fish Conservancy and Raincoast Conservation Foundation propose a suite of critical actions to be taken immediately to achieve the goal of halting the decline and preserving the possibility for recovery of these iconic whales that are so emblematic of the Salish Sea.