All-white killer whale spotted off Russia
Iceberg, an all white adult male killer whale, swims with his pod off the coast of Russia.
April 23rd, 2012
01:53 PM ET

All-white killer whale spotted off Russia

The world's only known all-white male killer whale has been spotted in the Pacific Ocean off Russia, scientists announced Monday.

The orca, dubbed "Iceberg" by the scientists, was spotted swimming with a pod of 12 others. Iceberg has a 6.5-foot-high dorsal fin and is at least 16 years old, according to a blog post by Erich Hoyt, co-director of the Far East Russia Orca Project.

Check out a photo gallery of albino creatures

The pod was spotted by scientists from universities in Moscow and St. Petersburg in the waters around the Commander Islands off the Kamchatka Peninsula. The area is part of a marine reserve.

Hoyt wrote that two other white orcas have been seen in area, but that Iceberg is the first fully grown male.

“In many ways, Iceberg is a symbol of all that is pure, wild and extraordinarily exciting about what is out there in the ocean waiting to be discovered,” Hoyt said in a statement.

Hoyt wrote that researchers will return to the waters where Iceberg was spotted this summer in hopes of finding the creature again and determining whether he is an albino or if there is some other reason for his white color.

The researchers hope the presence of Iceberg will help efforts to expand marine reserves along the Russian coast, they said in the statement.

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Filed under: Animals • Russia • Whales
soundoff (197 Responses)
  1. DJ

    Hast ye seen the White Whale?

    So.... how many Moby Dick references does that make?

    April 23, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Huey

    This is such a psuedo new story. It's obviously a recessive gene that occassionally manifest as an anomaly. The true story is why do some people get so excited about these occurences in nature. Although they know what it is scientifically, a genetic mutation and anomaly, they try to give this occurence some type of esoteric meaning or heightened significance. I suppose the story is that when this usually occurs, the animal either because of it's deficient genetics or because of it's inability to blend into it's environment, doesn't make it to adulthood. Albinism happens all the time in nature. No big deal... right???

    BTW, has anyone noticed how CNN will allow the most ridiculous commentary while censoring others? This will be the second time, I've attempted to post this comment.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  3. choco attack

    Someone save it from China! They are already putting it on the menu at a sick society restaurant!

    April 23, 2012 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  4. SpiderCNN


    April 23, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "Right Wing Insanity"

    Do you honestly think this thing will have to go to court on 2nd degree murder charges and get granted bail, cause it killed someone wading through the water to the marina for a bag of skittles?

    April 23, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Keyser

    For some reason this story seems totally cool to me. I actually like this report. Would like to hear more about it. A first time for everything finally have an interesting story.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. 8jimofohio

    it was & still is great 2 me.. thanks.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  8. pmn

    How cool is that! That is awesome. That is exactly where the Orca belongs in the ocean not a tank.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Steve

    They better kill it so they can find out what made it white.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Tachoman

    Best comment ever!

    April 23, 2012 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
  11. pmn

    Was that suppose to be funny? The albino whale is 16 years old not a baby. Of course, again its about race not a mammal right? not funny.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
  12. MrMailman

    “In many ways, Iceberg is a symbol of all that is pure...." ahh the white mindset..dude this animal has no pigmentation...that is all.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. pmn

    I wish they didn't make it public Digby because that is exactly what will happen. Hopefully, they might think it is bad luck to kill one. Or maybe we can tell them its bad luck...hmmmm.

    April 23, 2012 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. jen

    hope no one tries to kill him! now that he has benn seen can't other Countries that think Whale Huning is FUN(gag)-they would love to slaughter him just because they can! how can we protect him? Wish Jesus would just come back & take ALL the Animals except us Humans....Hurry Jesus

    April 23, 2012 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Nujerzy_Skitzo

    this is photoshoped russians just want attention how the hell do they know its age and info if they didnt catch it they should have a full display of pics if they did

    April 23, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
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