Cousins says he was ejected for using big-man fundamentals

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. Westbrook complained that when he was struck in the head during a game, he didn’t receive the same treatment Nurkic did. And Donovan sarcastically said at the time that he “probably didn’t ask Russell to stay down on the court long enough to get it reviewed.”Cousins, meanwhile, said he was aware of how his ejection following contact with Westbrook fit into the Thunder’s own recent history with disputed flagrant fouls.“It shows that Russ is coachable,” Cousins said. “He listens and they got what they’ve been working on.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SPORTSBack on the throneCousins, who has a history of on-court emotional outbursts that draw a relatively high number of technical fouls, said he knew officials would not give him the benefit of the doubt when they reviewed the play on a video monitor before ejecting him.“I’m DeMarcus. I expected the ejection. I knew,” said Cousins, who was assessed a league-high 18 technical fouls last season.Cousins added that he’s not sure what he can do differently going forward other than “send the refs a Christmas card — I don’t know — the league, too. Send Christmas cards, stuff like that.”The play occurred under the Pelicans’ basket in the third quarter after Cousins had secured a rebound. When Cousins raised his elbows near Westbrook’s face, the Thunder guard went down.It wasn’t clear from replays showed to the crowd whether Cousins caught Westbrook in the head or shoulder, or if the contact was significant. Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Gymnastics doctor facing at least 25 years in prison The league office reviews such plays before deciding on fines or additional punishment.Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry agreed with Cousins’ comment about rebounding fundamentals, saying that Pelicans coaches also tell their big men to use the positioning of their elbows to help secure rebounds.“I don’t think he had any intent on hurting anyone,” Gentry said. “I don’t think there’s anything that was done from a malicious or intentional standpoint.”Hard contact is not necessarily required for a flagrant-two foul. Only contact deemed “unnecessary and excessive,” according to the NBA rule book, which also employs the term “unsportsmanlike” in the section pertaining to flagrant fouls.In some ways, the play appeared to be an extension of recent Thunder protests about officiating that drew $15,000 fines.Westbrook, Paul George and coach Billy Donovan all were fined for comments about a flagrant foul called against Carmelo Anthony, whose elbow made contact with Jusuf Nurkic’s head while Anthony was shooting the ball. Nurkic fell demonstratively to the floor and Anthony was ejected.ADVERTISEMENT New Orleans Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins (0) elbows Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) in the head, drawing an ejection from the game, in the second half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017. (AP Photo/Scott Threlkeld)METAIRIE, La. — New Orleans center DeMarcus Cousins says he was protecting a rebound the way all big men are taught when he was ejected for a flagrant foul during a game against Oklahoma City.Cousins was called for a flagrant-two foul when he raised his right elbow near Thunder guard Russell Westbrook’s head during the third quarter of the Pelicans’ 114-107 victory Monday night.ADVERTISEMENT It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson LATEST STORIES Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scenecenter_img Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funny Cousins, who did not speak about the play until after Tuesday’s practice, said Westbrook “did a good job of selling” the foul in the way he fell to the floor, holding his head.“It’s crazy. When you start playing the game of basketball as a big man, they tell you, ‘When you get a rebound, keep your elbows high and out,’ you know, to protect the ball from guards coming in stripping,” Cousins said. “All I did was use my fundamentals and I got punished for it.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’ MOST READ Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Kiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award View commentslast_img read more

Blizzard Bike Club back for 30th season

first_img Club memberships cost $40 for the season, and for more information, either call Ferris Fast Cycles at 250-785-3711 or visit the club’s official website. This year, the season highlight will take place the weekend of June 9, as the club will be celebrating its 30 year in existence, as it was started back in 1983. This season will include 23 time trials, 10 Cyclo cross races, 24 mountain bike races, 5 duathlons, 1 triathlon, 2 hill climbs and 20 massed start road events. Rides with the club’s coaches will begin in June, and will take place during 10 weekly sessions.- Advertisement – Winter turbo training will continue twice a week until the end of March. This year, the mountain bike races were substantially expanded to 24 events, which will be raced on the Club’s expanded “Beatton Cactus” circuit.  Advertisementlast_img read more

Minor Hockey Week begins on Monday

first_imgPhoto: Kids from the Fort St. John Minor Hockey Association brave City Council on Monday night, to request that next week be deemed ‘Minor Hockey Week’ – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.caIt’s hockey mania for the next week in Fort St. John. The City proclaimed January 13th to 23rd as Minor Hockey Week. – Advertisement -Kids decked out in their hockey jerseys approached City Council on Monday, to request the proclamation that would coincide with BC Minor Hockey Week. Theresa Hipkiss is the Publicity Chairperson for the Fort St. John Minor Hockey Association. She says there are a couple of events planned to celebrate the week. The Minor Hockey Association is participating in a ‘penalty-free challenge’ that is sponsored by the Canucks Centre for B.C. Hockey. So, whenever a team goes penalty free in a regularly scheduled game, the team can enter to win prizes from the Canucks Centre. Meanwhile, the Fort St. John Senior Flyers are offering free admission to minor hockey players on Saturday the 23rd. All minor hockey players who wear their jersey will get free admission, when the Flyers host the Dawson Creek Senior Canucks.Advertisement Photo: Mayor Bruce Lantz (middle) presents the Fort St. John Minor Hockey Association with the proclamation on Monday night – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.calast_img read more

Hugo Lloris ‘to start Man United clash despite drink driving charge’

first_img predicted SORRY How Everton could look in January under Ancelotti with new signings silverware Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update whoops Did Mahrez just accidentally reveal Fernandinho is leaving Man City this summer? possible standings Spurs visit Old Trafford on Monday evening hoping to continue their 100 per cent start to the season, which has already seen them win at Newcastle and against Fulham at Wembley. 2 England’s most successful clubs of the past decade, according to trophies won Lloris was charged in the early hours of Friday morning The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 gameday cracker revealed Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Every current Premier League club’s best kit from the past decade He spent around seven hours in custody before being charged and released on bail, with the 31-year-old later apologising for his actions.There had been suggestions Pochettino, the Tottenham manager, would drop Lloris for Monday’s Premier League fixture against Man United, though the Daily Mail say the Argentine coach will stand by his glovesman for the encounter. Lloris captained France to World Cup success over the summer latest smart causal Lloris will still face an internal disciplinary process at Spurs, while it is believed the former Lyon star could lose the Tottenham captaincy to Harry Kane, who is current vice-captain.Lloris, who is in his seventh season with the Lilywhites, has a close relationship with Pochettino, which is why the latter is expected to keep faith in the keeper. Mauricio Pochettino is set to name Hugo Lloris as Tottenham’s starting goalkeeper for Monday’s clash vs Manchester United despite the World Cup winning captain being charged with drink driving.Lloris, the France international, was arrested at around 2:20am on Friday morning for failing a roadside breathalyser test. Most read in Premier League Green reveals how he confronted Sarri after Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat at Man City Sky Sports presenter apologises for remarks made during Neville’s racism discussion tense How the Premier League table could change after the Boxing Day fixtures 2last_img read more

Chelsea midfielder gives update on his future amid January exit rumours

first_imgCesc Fabregas expects to stay at Chelsea until the end of the season.The Blues midfielder, whose five-year contract expires next summer, has been linked with a January move to AC Milan. Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ ‘I’ll get him’ – Robertson further endears himself to fans with revenge vow to Mane LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS PAYBACK scrap “I play at Stamford Bridge, I’m happy. That’s the most important thing. But of course every player wants to play more.”Fabregas was a key component of Jose Mourinho’s title-winning team in the 2014/15 campaign, but has become more of a peripheral figure since.The £50million summer arrival of Jorginho has limited the Spaniard’s playing time at Stamford Bridge.However, Fabregas expects to have a bigger role during Chelsea’s busy Christmas period. Sunday’s clash with Fulham is the first of three Premier League games in six days, with Wednesday’s match at Wolves and next Saturday’s game against Manchester City.The 32-year-old added: “I already know which games I will play and I am ready for it.“I have spoken to the coach. He has been straightforward with me and I need to be ready for when the opportunity comes. That’s it.” REPLY LATEST Cesc Fabregas won the Premier League title with Chelsea in 2015 gameday cracker 2 The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 2 He is yet to start a Premier League game under Maurizio Sarri this season, with most of his appearances coming in cup games.It has led to transfer speculation, which Fabregas was quick to dismiss after Chelsea’s 4-0 Europa League win over PAOK on Thursday night.He said: “I haven’t spoken to anyone.“Obviously in January I can sign (a pre-contract agreement) with whoever I want and probably this will attract many clubs.“But so far, from what I can say right now, yes I will stay here until the end of the season. Cesc Fabregas assisted two of Chelsea’s four goals in their Europa League win over PAOK last night BEST OF Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Sky Sports presenter apologises for remarks made during Neville’s racism discussion Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade revealed Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ RANKED Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update latest SORRY Gerrard launches furious touchline outburst as horror tackle on Barisic sparks chaos last_img read more


first_imgRTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta is currently running an online listenership survey, and they are calling on listeners to fill in the survey at by 9 May.Raidió na Gaeltachta is celebrating 40 years on air this year, and as part of the work in hand they are carrying out a comprehensive review of their current role and approach.They are interested in learning from listeners about their listening habits, and also hearing their opinions on programmes, standards, satisfaction levels, and any other recommendations on the station’s work. The information provided with help management in planning for the future of the service. Rónán Mac Con Iomaire, Leascheannaire of the station, said “As we celebrate 40 years on air, we are taking the opportunity to review all aspects of the service we provide. To that effect, we would like to hear from listeners about their opinions on how to provide the very best and most relevant service for them, and we would be very grateful if they would share their opinions with us in the survey.”The survey can be found at and needs to be filled in by 9 May. RnaG ASKS DONEGAL LISTENERS TO TAKE PART IN SURVEY was last modified: April 27th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:RnaGlast_img read more

Drug gang members from Donegal sentenced after £500K haul

first_imgTwo Donegal men stopped by police in Belfast in possession of more than an estimated half a million pounds worth of cocaine and herbal cannabis were sentenced at Laganside Crown Court today. Dominic Porter, aged 32, from Lifford in County Donegal and Conrad Clarke, aged 29, from St Johnston, County Donegal received a six year sentence for Possession of Class A controlled drugs (cocaine) with intent to supply – three years in custody and three years on licence. They also received a three year sentence for Possession of Class B drugs (cannabis) with intent to supply – 18 months in custody and 18 months on licence. The sentences will run concurrently.The two men, travelling in a Vauxhall Insignia, were stopped by police in the Whitla Street area of Belfast city centre on 8 February of this year as part of a proactive investigation into a Derry-based organised crime gang involved in major drugs supply and money laundering.Police searched the vehicle and found a bin bag in the front of the vehicle containing a number of packages containing high purity Class A cocaine and herbal cannabis with an estimated street value in excess of half a million pounds.Images: PSNIDetective Inspector Tom McClure welcomed the sentence and said: “This was a significant and large haul of drugs recovered by our officers as part of a proactive operation targeting criminals intent on making money from illicit drugs.“There is no doubt that this operation, which resulted in these two men being brought before the courts today, struck a blow to the activities of an organised gang involved in serious drug criminality.“The PSNI is committed to making Northern Ireland a hostile environment for those in our community who are involved in serious drug crimes and those involved are warned that we will seek to identify them, arrest them and place them before the courts. There will be no hiding place for them.Images: PSNIDetective Inspector McClure continued: “I want to thank our colleagues in An Garda Siochana for their assistance during the course of this investigation.“We are committed to tackling illegal drugs and other criminal activities and in keeping communities safe. I continue to appeal to members of the public to come forward with any information about the supply or use of illegal drugs or criminal activity. Anyone with any information can call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”Drug gang members from Donegal sentenced after £500K haul was last modified: December 14th, 2017 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

South Africa pays R2.9m for Dewani transfer

first_img9 April 2014 South Africa’s Department of Justice and Constitutional Development took no chances on Tuesday, forking out R2.9-million to transfer honeymoon murder accused Shrien Dewani from Bristol Airport in the UK to Cape Town International Airport. Dewani arrived at the Cape Town International in a private chartered jet, accompanied by a South African medical doctor, nurse and members of the South African Police Service and Interpol, shortly after 9am on Tuesday. He was then whisked off to the Western Cape High Court, where he was charged with kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, conspiracy to commit murder and defeating the ends of justice. The case was postponed to 12 May pending a medical examination to determine whether or not he is fit to stand trial. Dewani has been accused of orchestrating the murder of his bride, Anni Hindocha. He allegedly ordered local men to carry out a hit and make it look like a fatal carjacking incident. A substantial amount of money was paid for the hit, which occurred in Khayelitsha in November 2010. Three men have already been imprisoned for the same offence. Xolile Mngeni, Mziwamadoda Qwabe and Zola Tongo were convicted of murder between 2010 and 2012. The men were sentenced to life imprisonment, 25 years’ imprisonment and 18 years’ imprisonment respectively. Dewani has been fighting removal from the UK, citing mental health problems, including severe depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Department of Justice spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga said the choice of a private aircraft was informed by the fact that Dewani’s medical condition needed to be constantly monitored and attended to. A commercial flight would have had the potential of compromising Dewani, which could have had an adverse effect on his pending medical examination. “We took into account the fact that there was undisputed evidence during the extradition hearing that he had displayed suicidal tendencies, and the South African government did not want to take chances,” Mhaga said. “It was therefore paramount that his return to the country was hazard-free, in order to ensure that he eventually makes that court appearance without hindrance.” Lieutenant Anwa Dramat, national head of the police’s Hawks special investigating unit, said: “We wish Dewani well as far as his health his concerned, in order for him to be able to tell his side of the story. Our investigating team is ready to resume with the trial. We hope the trial will bring closure to both the Hindocha and Dewani families.” Dewani is being detained at Valkenberg Hospital in Cape Town, where he will receive psychiatric treatment pending his trial. Source: read more

Facebook Fund REV Graduation Day: Backlight, Thread and More

first_imgTags:#Facebook#web dana oshiro After a summer of hard work, Facebook’s 24 fbFund REV incubator companies presented their products to a room full of investors, entrepreneurs and journalists. Created by Accel Partners and Founders Fund, the fbFund REV program is meant to foster innovation and test the boundaries of app development on the Facebook platform. The groups have certainly come a long way from concept to creation, below are just a few of our favorites:Backlight: Backlight is a community that allows members to share inspirational digital assets from across the web. The community puts art into context by illuminating upon it with a background narrative. Backlight offers a StumbleUpon-style bookmarklet, Facebook Connect integration through page updates and notes, and the group plans on developing a point-based credit system entitled “social currency.”Thread: Thread is a tool that allows Facebook friends to leverage their social graphs and make romantic connections. Formerly Frinto, the company recently raised $1.2 million dollars from Sequoia Capital. It is perhaps best described as Linkedin for dating as friends search each others contacts and request introductions. GeckoGo: GeckoGo is a tool that leverages Facebook data and pushes it back to sites like Expedia and Voyij. Users add their travel information to maps and travel wish lists, receive a snapshot of their destinations as well as a quick look at their friends who’ve also traveled to these locations. FriendRadio: FriendRadio is a Facebook application that allows users to rank and listen to their friends’ music playlists. The tool lets you set favorites, vote on tracks and even assigns music matching scores – a music compatibility rank for your friends. The group is exploring revenue strategies including “song gifting” and the artist-to-fan appreciation model popularized by sites like Bandcamp and Topspin Media. RentMineOnline: RentMineOnline is a resident referral program that offers property managers a chance to leverage social networks to secure better tenants. Managers create campaigns and pass the info on to their favorite residents. From here, residents distribute rental openings to their friends via Facebook Connect. Given the nature of the Facebook platform, social startup presentations were no surprise; however, this year, the fund chose to work with 2 nonprofit organizations – Samasource and Vittana. Interestingly enough, both companies work to help individuals in developing countries. Vittana: Vittana is best described as Kiva for student loans. While financial aid programs are well established in countries like Canada and the US, few programs exist for education in the developing world. Vittana offers 6-24 month student loans to students interested in pursuing advanced education. The project hopes to raise $650,000 in philanthropic venture donations. The majority of loans are awarded to vocational students and amounts range between $500 – $1500. Loan recipients are screened by on-the-ground microloan organizations and preference is given to students who are the children of microloan recipients. Visit Vittana for more information. Samasource: In Sanskrit, Samasource means “equal”. The company works with men and women in developing countries to provide work-related activities via the internet. Similar to Mechanical Turk, Samasource connects corporations, nonprofit organizations and small businesses to complete “microwork” tasks. The group launched App Test early this morning before the fbFundREV demo. Available at Apps.Facebook/Samasource, the product allows Facebook application developers to outsource their QA testing to those in need. The company has helped more than 500 individuals in Kenya, Uganda, Cameroon, Ghana and Pakistan. To find out more about this program, visit Samasource. Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… Related Posts center_img The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Auditlast_img read more

North Atlantic Killer Whales May Be Branching Into Two Species

first_imgKiller whales (Orcinus orca) can be surprisingly finicky eaters. In the North Pacific and Antarctic, some feed only on fish; others, only on mammals—dietary preferences that seem to have led to new species of orcas. Some researchers think that a similar process is occurring in the killer whale populations of the Northeast Atlantic. But speciation there may be a long time in coming. A new paper examining these orcas’ diets over the last 10,000 years reveals that most are not as picky as their relatives; those eating herring today may be feasting on baby seals tomorrow. The study shows that the Northeast Atlantic whales may only be at the beginning of the speciation process.       Evolutionary biologists have long argued about whether it’s possible for a new species to arise in a population that isn’t separated by geographic barriers, such as an ocean or a mountain range—a process called sympatric speciation. “Killer whales have been thought of by some as something like the poster child” for the process, “because there are multiple genetically distinct populations [which have not yet been formally described as separate species] with different prey preferences in the North Pacific and Antarctic,” says Phillip Morin, a cetacean biologist at the Southwest Fisheries Science Center in San Diego, California, who was not involved in the new study. Scientists have suggested that the orcas separated into distinct species because of what they chose to eat. In this scenario, fish-eaters would mate only with other fish-eaters, and mammal-eaters only with other mammal-eaters. Given enough time, the two populations would become genetically distinct and unable to reproduce.Some killer whale observers have proposed that the orcas in the Northeast Atlantic also likely comprise two species, because some pods appear to be fish specialists, while others prefer marine mammals. They point out that the orcas’ hunting tactics for the two types of prey differ dramatically and are learned behaviors—cultural differences that may also help drive populations apart.  Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)“When hunting herring, the whales travel in large groups and vocalize a lot,” says Andrew Foote, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Copenhagen, and lead author of the new study. “But they travel in small groups, three to five animals, and hunt in complete silence when going after seals,” because of the seals’ acute hearing.To find out if differences in diet and culture have also led to two species of killer whales in the Northeast Atlantic, Foote and his colleagues studied the dietary choices and genetic relationships of orcas from Greenland to Norway. They compared 20 tissue samples taken from modern (1865 to 1995) whale bones and teeth with 23 more ancient samples, dating from 2800 to 6800 years ago, that were collected from archaeological sites and dredging operations. The scientists analyzed the samples’ isotopic ratios—a telltale chemical signature of what the animals ate during their lifetimes. They also extracted DNA from the specimens, and from skin samples of living orcas to reconstruct the whales’ genetic lineages. And they examined the wear-patterns on the animals’ teeth; killer whales that feed heavily on herring have badly worn teeth.The scientists’ analysis revealed a mixed picture. Although two of the orca populations eat only fish, there was no genetic evidence that they have diverged from those that dine on seals, the team reports online this week in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. “It might be that the whales are at the beginning of what is a very slow process, since all the ecological ingredients are there for a speciation event,” Foote says. He points out that only 10,000 years ago these waters were under ice, and no orcas were to be found, so it may not be a surprise that most of the orcas haven’t differentiated as they have in the North Pacific and Antarctic, where they’ve lived far longer.Some of the study populations that previously were considered fish-only diners also feast on mammals, the team’s research shows. For instance, the scientists collected samples from a family pod of six orcas that aboriginal hunters in East Greenland had killed. “Each whale had a seal pup in its stomach,” Foote says, “yet their teeth were worn like those of the herring-hunting whales” seen off Iceland. In fact, the researchers’ subsequent analysis showed that these orcas belonged to the population of animals previously considered strictly fish-eaters. Tilikum, SeaWorld’s notorious orca that has killed three people, including one of his trainers, was captured as a youngster in these same waters, Foote notes; while he is fed only fish at SeaWorld, in the wild, he may have eaten marine mammals, too.“Their data indicate that prey preferences are less fixed in North Atlantic killer whales than in those in the North Pacific and Antarctic,” Morin says. So, in these waters “prey preferences alone don’t appear to be sufficient to cause genetic divergence,” leading to distinct species. The populations may need to be physically separated, too. Still, that may be happening, Foote says. “If the strict fish-eaters stick to their diet, and the groups hunting fish and seals become specialized on mammals, in time, they’ll have fewer encounters with each other, and that could lead to speciation.” And if that’s the case, then Foote and his team have documented one of the rarest of biological events: a population at the very beginning of becoming two species.last_img read more