Biologist: Typical for Southern Residents to spend early summer elsewhere

Orca calf L125 swimming with its mother, Surprise. (Center for Whale Research)

The last few months have been marked by a noticeable disappearance of Southern Residents in the Puget Sound and San Juan Islands.

For more than 100 days — up until a brief sighting this week in the San Juans — the J-pod of orcas was not seen in the area.

But Dr. Michael Weiss, a biologist at the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbor, says this is not as drastic as it sounds — it actually follows the whales’ more recent movements.

“This is pretty typical for their pattern for

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