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Was killer whale hit by boat _ or is she pregnant?

Associated Press Modified: August 26, 2011 at 8:30 pm •  Published: August 26, 2011

FRIDAY HARBOR, Wash. (AP) — Is a killer whale in northwest Washington's San Juan Islands behaving lethargically because she was hit by a boat — or is she just pregnant?

National Marine Fisheries Service spokesman Brian Gorman said his agency was investigating a report that the whale had been hit by a private boat Friday.

However, senior scientist Ken Balcomb of the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbor says he carefully looked over the 18-year-old female whale and saw no evidence of any new injury. He also says she's been acting "mopey" for days — "actually much of the summer." He thinks it's possible she's pregnant and soon to give birth.

Washington fisheries officials also were reportedly investigating the boat strike report. They did not immediately return calls for comment Friday evening.


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