For more than 10 days, Tahlequah (the mother orca, also called J35) started carrying her dead calf near the San Juan Islands.

We respect Tahlequah’s intelligence, and we believe that she is trying to communicate with us. We must heed the warning from her and her pod; no activist organization has ever spoken with such clarity and urgency as these beings have these past ten days. She is successfully making the invisible visible more effectively than any activist organization ever could. Let’s make sure she is heard.

What can you do?

Happening TODAY:

Local Wenatchee activists have put together a team to mobilize imagery outside the Orca Task Force Meeting early this morning. The Governor’s Task Force on Orca Recovery is meeting today in Wenatchee.

Governor Inslee is responding to pressure for Lower for Snake River dam removal. We need to increase that pressure and expand it to the task force, the AG’s office and elsewhere.

Upcoming Events:

  1. “Prey” Work Group:
    Thursday, August 9th, 10am to 4pm, Puget Sound Energy Wild Horse Wind Farm Renewable Energy Center, 25905 Vantage Highway, Ellensburg
  2. All Working Group Integration Workshop:
    Monday, August 20th, 10am to 3pm, location TBD (in the Seattle/Auburn/Federal Way area)
  3. Task Force meeting #4:
    Tuesday, August 28th, 10am to 5pm, Swinomish Casino and Lodge, 12885 Casino Drive, Anacortes

Organize Your Own Action:

One organizing strategy Backbone is deploying, to build on the incredible courage and spirit of Tahlequah, is the use of human murals. Human Orca Murals are simple to do and they bring people together, earn media attention to keep the movement growing, help people feel their connection to each other, the orca, salmon and this beautiful, precious and fragile place.

An action like this can be significantly aided by the help of a contractor/builder used to staking out a building site and a friend with a drone. (Use the orca grid below to lay out the site.) The image to the left is from 2009 on Maury Island. Invite people to come with black clothes and/or black umbrellas. Cut some white plastic or cloth for the spots. When we did this action we had a small plane fly overhead. These days lots of people have drones that make taking the photo so much easier.

We hope this helps you self organize a solidarity vigil/human mural in your community.  Instructions are here. It is a powerful way to bring people together to organize for yet further action. Let us know you’re organizing an action, and we will provide advice and help promote your gathering and your impact.




In Solidarity with Tahlequah,

Team Backbone