Half the World’s Orcas Could Soon Disappear

They live in chatty groups, and can hunt in teams—sometimes working in tandem to create waves that dump unlucky prey off floating ice. Savvy orcas, with their splotchy two-tone flesh and rich family lives, have survived mass slaughter, being captured with nets and lassos, and being trucked and airlifted to marine theme parks.

But new research published Thursday in the journal Science suggests more than half of the world’s killer whale populations could face complete collapse in 30 to 50 years, thanks to a suite of toxic chemicals the world has already banned.

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