Fake Whale Capsizes Instead of Scaring Sea Lions on Oregon Coast
Sea Lions 1, fake whale, 0.
Port of Astoria officials on the Oregon coast got a sliver of success from a life-size fake orca, or killer whale, that was dispatched into the harbor area in the hopes of scaring off a large group of predatory sea lions.
However, it's inaugural voyage ended up like the SS Minnow on Gilligans Island. After a brief smooth sail into the designated area, the orca capsized, and ended up looking like a dead goldfish in a family aquarium.
Turns out the creature, named "Island", was swamped by the wake of a passing ship. But officials plan to resend Island into the area crowded with the lions. Officials say when the orca came into plain view just before capsizing, the lions got "deathly quiet." They saw it, say officials, and a successful voyage will likely accomplish it's goal.
Sea Lions have few natural enemies, but they greatly fear the killer whale, who's diet is made up large of the big, plump sea creatures.
Astoria officials have been plagued by the large group of lions, which prevent people form using the docks, eat too much salmon and otherwise disrupt harbor procedures.
The orca, made of fiberglass and painted every bit like a real killer whale, is actually registered as a boat, and has a driver. It was brought to the Astoria area from Bellingham.