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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Group proposes enclosure for orcas in San Juan Islands

An environmental nonprofit group is hosting a series of public meetings in western Washington to discuss the possibility of creating an enclosure in Washington’s San Juan Islands for orcas retired from theme parks

New calf reportedly born in endangered orca pod

A Canadian whale researcher is reporting that a new calf has been born to the critically endangered southern resident orcas that live in the waters between Washington state and Canada

State budget scrimps on replacing salmon-blocking culverts

Washington faces a federal court order to fix under-roadway pipes that block migrating fish by 2030, but a budget passed by lawmakers puts the state at risk of missing the deadline and could delay salmon recovery even as the Pacific Northwest’s endangered orcas are starving.

The decline of salmon adds to the struggle of Puget Sound’s orcas

The crew of the Bell M. Shimada hauled in the net, long as a football field and teeming with life. Scientists, off the coast of Washington for a week on this June research trip, crowded in for a look. Each tow of the net revealed a changing world for chinook salmon, the Pacific Northwest’s most famous fish – and the most important prey for the killer whales that frequent Puget Sound.

Investigation finds former lawmaker harassed assistant

An outside investigation into improper conduct allegations against former Sen. Kevin Ranker found he sexually harassed a former legislative assistant and created a hostile work environment for her once she left to work for a state agency.

Scientists ID another possible threat to orcas: pink salmon

Over the years, scientists have identified dams, pollution and vessel noise as causes of the troubling decline of the Pacific Northwest’s resident killer whales. Now, they may have found a new and more surprising culprit: pink salmon.

Groups: U.S. must consider how salmon fishing hurts orcas

The federal government is violating the Endangered Species Act by failing to consider how salmon fishing off the West Coast is affecting endangered killer whales, two conservation groups said Tuesday as they threatened a lawsuit.