This dead killer whale was discovered on Nootka Island on Nov. 14, 2018. (Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation)

This dead killer whale was discovered on Nootka Island on Nov. 14, 2018. (Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation)

Orca calf found dead on Vancouver Island coast was only a few days old

Necropsy results show the calf may have died from maternal separation or other factors

The killer whale calf that was found dead on the west coast of Vancouver Island two weeks ago died three to five days after being born, a necropsy reveals.

The results of the procedure, published on the Fisheries and Oceans Canada website on Wednesday, confirmed the transient calf likely died because it was separated from its mother, its mother died, it was neglected, or it failed to thrive.

Further analysis of blood and tissue samples is required to determine cause of death, and could take two to three more weeks.

The whale, also known as Biggs, was found Nov. 14 on Nootka Island

Two days later, a female humpback washed shore near the Tsawwassen Ferry terminal in Delta. Necropsy results are consistent with a “catastrophic ship strike” and injuries from a propeller.

READ MORE: Tsawwassen humpback killed by ship strike, DFO says

The department is investigating.

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