Investigation says toxin killed the Vancouver aquarium’s beluga whales

Qila and Aurora died just nine days apart in November 2016

The Vancouver Aquarium says a toxin was the cause of death of two beluga whales last November, but the exact substance couldn’t be identified.

The conclusion is the result of a five-month investigation that also determined the toxin was likely introduced by food, water or through human interference.

The aquarium’s head veterinarian, Dr. Martin Haulena, says the investigation has helped them understand what happened and how they can help ensure the safety of the mammals in their care.

The aquarium says that is has taken several steps to protect the remaining animals at the aquarium including enhanced food screening, overhauling its water treatment systems and real-time testing of the circulating water.

The aquarium says in a news release it is also significantly updating its security to monitor perimeter access and reduce potential threats of human interference.

The belugas, 21-year-old Qila and her mother, 30-year-old Aurora, died nine days apart last November from what officials said was a mysterious illness.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

Caps’ Pochipinski locks up scholarship

Forward bound for Colorado College

Duncan man gets jail time for beating puppy to death

Robert Carolan is also banned from owning animals for a decade

Column: Keeping animals off roads is no simple task

Where I originally come from, it’s moose, which can weigh twice as much as an elk

VIDEO: Sweetheart Dance packs the Lake Cowichan 50+ Centre

Seniors team up with Cowichan Women Against Violence for a Valentine’s Day fundraising dance

Coming up in Cowichan: Irrigation; Palestinian children; fun with fungi

The Cowichan Watershed Board is presenting a free efficient irrigation workshop

Virtue and Moir end ice dance careers with Olympic gold

Virtue and Moir’s gold medal win at the Olympics makes them the world’s most decorated figure skaters

Canadians find living in small spaces teaches creativity

Canadian families choosing to live in small spaces to bring closeness to children

Emergency crews rescue pregnant woman after fall on mountain near Victoria

Roughly four-hour-long rescue includes firefighters from two departments

SAR suspends search for missing man at Sun Peaks

RCMP will continue to search for a missing man near Kamloops but SAR has suspended their role

Lottery will help save children’s lives

Each ticket gets you a chance to win a lot of money, while helping a lot of kids

B.C. RCMP officer officially cleared in car wash shooting incident

A report found the Salmon Arm officer fired 14 bullets at the man’s truck

Wounded Warrior Run stops in Port McNeill

For Jacqueline Zweng, the Wounded Warrior Run is a personal matter.

Most Read