Support removing the Snake River Dams to Save the SRKWs

Chinook salmon are the killer whales’ primary food. Chinook salmon runs originating in the Columbia/Snake River watershed are the singular most important food source for the killer whales’ survival. Chinook salmon are endangered species themselves. There are not enough Chinook salmon to sustain even the 76 Southern Residents Killer Whales that are alive today.

Each year the Snake River dams kill many millions of Chinook salmon juveniles as they attempt to navigate the dams and migrate down river and out to the ocean. Despite the dams, some Chinook salmon do make it to the ocean and grow to adults. The dams again exact their toll when adult Chinook return to the Columbia/Snake watershed to spawn. The dams finish the killing cycle by impeding the Chinooks return to their spawning grounds.

According to hundreds of scientists, removal of the four Lower Snake River dams is the single most effective way to generate the abundant Columbia Basin salmon that Southern Resident Killer Whales need to survive and recover. Judge Redden, the judge who presided over the decades long Columbia/Snake River legal case involving salmon and hydropower, also believes the dams need to come down. Yet as the orcas spiral towards extinction, the federal government refuses to consider dam removal, and instead spends billions of dollars on unreasonable and speculative mitigations and habitat restoration measures to avoid significant changes to dam operations.

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Voice of the Orcas


Southern Resident Killer Whales at Superpod 3

A group of Southern Resident Blackfish welcome whale watchers at Superpod3 gathering near San Juan Island, WA, USA. Images were captured on iPhone 5 via J. Ventre. Other Superpod members included Lindsey Sorg, Jeff Friedmand, Carol Ray, Michelle Duncan and Jordan Waltz. Boat operator was Spencer Domico on his boat, the Legacy. The other boat was Capt Maya’s Peregrine, operated by David Howitt.

Blackfish Q&A at Superpod 3

Experts, former trainers, & Blackfish enthusiasts gathered for this Q&A at the Superpod 3 gathering.

Salmon Lecture by Dr Chris Caudill at Superpod 3

Chris Caudill is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources at the University of Idaho. His broad interests are in the ecology and evolution of animal movement and the conservation of aquatic resources. He holds a MS from the University of New Hampshire (1995) and Ph.D. from Cornell University (2002). He conducted postdoctoral research at Georgia Tech before joining the Fish Ecology Research Lab at the University of Idaho in 2003 for a second post-doc. He has directed the FERL program since 2008, largely focusing on the migration ecology of adult salmon, Pacific lamprey, and American shad in the Columbia, Snake, and Willamette rivers.

Lolita Update by Howard Garrett at Superpod 3

On July 16, 2014 Howard Garrett updated attendees of #Superpod3 on the status of Lolita, a Southern Resident Killer whale taken into captivity over 40 years ago.

Interview of Ella Van Cleave at Superpod 3

At Superpod 3, young activist Ella Van Cleave is interviewed by Jeffrey Ventre, along with Samantha Berg and John Jett. She talks about the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, activism, & the future of humanity.

Dr Naomi Rose lectures at Superpod 3

Dr Rose lectures on legislation, regulations and agencies associated with regulating the trade and display of marine mammals in the USA.

Lecture on the Resident Orcas

Astrid van Ginneken speaks with best-selling author David Kirby & former trainer Jeffrey Ventre MD.

Brief Scenes from Superpod 2

The Superpod 2 event brought scientists, journalists, movie makers, and former trainers together for the second consecutive year. In this brief video, Jeffrey Ventre interviews Ingrid Visser, and more.