Though boaters are advised to stay away at least whales.org/watching-whales/whale-watching-guidelines/">100 meters away from whales, boats still regularly strike aquatic wildlife such as whales, sea turtles and manatees.
Apparently boat strikes run in Fern's family, according to NOAA research biologist Meghan Moore: "Twelve years ago, A95's great uncle A60 (Fife) was spotted with a series of deep, parallel cuts on and just below the right side of his dorsal fin; we believe they were caused by a boat propeller. They've since healed and Fife is alive and doing well today."
Despite the whale's bloody appearance, researchers noted that Fern's spirit wasn't shaken by the injury. The statement referred to the whale's demeanor as "vigorous, engaged in social activity and apparently behaving normally."
With all the dangers posed to whales and wildlife, Fern demonstrates the orca's strength and resilience.
Check out The Vancouver Aquarium's animated video for tips on sharing the ocean with whales.