How Diligent Volunteers Kept a Beached Young Orca Alive Until the Tide Returned Eight Hours Later

In July 2015, diligent whale researchers and volunteers in Hartley Bay, on the North Coast of British Columbia kept a crying beached juvenile Orca cool, hydrated and breathing for nearly eight hours until the tide came back. It appeared that the unfortunate whale had gotten her nose stuck behind a rock and was unable to free herself before the tide moved out. Once the water came rushing back in, however, the stubborn little Orca took some time to figure a way out of her predicament and swam happily away, spouting a stream of water in her wake. One of the volunteers described the scene in an interview with CBC News.

She cried often, which tore at our hearts, but as the tide came up there were many cheers as this whale was finally free. …We decided the best thing to do would be to keep her cool, that meant to put water on her body and we used blankets and sheets …At first she was stressed, you could see that her breathing was getting a little faster. I think she knew that we were there to help her.