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Twelve Killer Whales Trapped Under Quebec Sea Ice as Community Prays for Help

***UPDATE***

The mayor’s office in Inukjuak reports that the killer whales trapped under a sheet up ice seemed have reached safety. The whales vanished this morning from the hole they used for air. Winds shifted overnight creating a passageway to open water six miles away. Though, locals still fear that the whales might get caught elsewhere. To help ease their minds, locals hired a helicopter to scan the area for signs of the pod. The whales have so far not been spotted and it is believed that the whales safely escaped harm.

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Twelve killer whales have been trapped under a bed of ice in Quebec’s Far North and have gathered around a single opening in the water about the size of a pickup truck in a desperately attempt to get oxygen, reports the Montreal Gazette.

Mayor Peter Inukpuk pleaded with the Canadian government to send an icebreaker as soon as possible to help the whales, who have been trapped since Tuesday, find their way back to open waters. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans is sending officials to evaluate the situation.

“Fisheries and Oceans Canada is assessing the situation and are exploring every possible option, but will only be in a position to determine what – if anything – can be done once our specialists arrive on site,” spokesman Frank Stanek said in a statement.

The community is praying that Mother Nature will get the whales out safely if it is impossible for the government to help. An icebreaker could cost the federal government millions and there is no guarantee that it will make it to the whales in time.

A hunter first spotted the pod of killer’s at the hole on the eastern shore of the Hudson Bay. Authorities believe that the whales got trapped in the ice as temperatures dropped in the area and boxed them in and as temperatures continue to decrease, their breathing hole is getting smaller.

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