> Question: I work on a offshore platform and on 6-24-98 "about"" I saw a whale that had half of its tail cut off! It looked like someone had taken a knife and went right down his spine then cut his tail off!! But it was still swimming and jumping with the other whales it was with.. It still looked healthy, like it had been done awhile ago. I was working off Point Conception in California then, and was wondering if you or someone has heard of this whale? Reply: I know of right whales off Argentina and humpback whales off the east coast of the US that function fine even though they are missing part of their tails or flukes. Usually the cause of these injuries is from the propellors of large boats and ships expecially when the injury is straight in nature as you described. Orca or killer whales also attack young whales and can cause permanent injuries. It is amazing that the whales can adapt but they do. I do not know of the whale you are referring to but I do not know individual whales that are studies when they are off the west coast. I suggest surfing WhaleNet's pages to try to link to a research organization on the west coast that may know this paticular whale. Try searching by clicking on http://whale.wheelock.edu/howtofind.html for an appropriate link. Good luck!! Kim Kim Marshall-Tilas (781) 259-0423 Whale Conservation Institute fax: 259-0288 191 Weston Road website: http://www.whale.org/ Lincoln, MA 01773 WCI is a member funded and focused organization. Membership has its privileges . . .