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NOAA and partners capture footage of what might be new species of killer whale

Scientists think they’ve made a rare discovery near Antarctica
March 7, 2019
International scientists encountered unique pod of orcas similar to the unidentified animals seen in this 2011 photograph.

It’s not every day that scientists get an up close and personal look at what might be a new species.

But that’s exactly what happened this past January. NOAA Fisheries and an international team of scientists encountered what they thought was a unique a pod of orcas off the Southern tip of Chile. Now they’re waiting on laboratory confirmation that the genetic samples they collected prove this is a rare find, indeed. It’s a story that could solve a decades old mystery.

See the video below, and find more video and images inside this story from NOAA Fisheries.

Select footage from an expedition off Cape Horn, Chile that documented a new type of killer whale with different appearance. Researchers obtained a tiny bit of tissue/blubber that will allow them to determine if the “Type D” whales are a new species.
Select footage from an expedition off Cape Horn, Chile that documented a new type of killer whale with different appearance. Researchers obtained a tiny bit of tissue/blubber that will allow them to determine if the “Type D” whales are a new species. (NOAA)