Coast Guard: 'Canoe' in Coos Bay was orca whales

Coast Guard: 'Canoe' in Coos Bay was orca whales »Play Video
Jane Hodder with the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology

COOS BAY, Ore. - What started as a report of a man in a capsized canoe ended with the discovery of orca whales in Coos Bay on Tuesday.

According to the Coast Guard, what looked like a canoe accident was actually killer whales swimming in the Barview area.

Marine experts say orcas that travel through Coos Bay are most likely "transient" killer whales.

"We are not sure why they travel here, but we believe it is because they eat mammals, like seals, sea lions, other whales," said Jane Hodder with the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology. "So maybe that's why they come here, because of the seal in the bay."

Hodder said the whales are rarely seen in the bay because they move so fast and they never stay for long.