Ten-year-old Lucas Nielsen presented false killer whale Chester to the Vanderhoof community over two sessions at the Vanderhoof Public Library on May 11.
To an audience of over 30 people of all ages, Nielsen explained that the false killer whale began to recognize him after over 10 visits to the Vancouver Aquarium in the past year, when he travelled to the city for medical appointments.
For Nielsen’s mother Claire, the friendship that developed between Nielsen and Chester was not as unusual as the fact that the false killer whale was the only one of its species that survived a rescue from beaching, as she learned from Chester’s rescue team.
“They made the call to not euthanize him…he opened his eyes and there’s something about him that they need to save,” she recounted.
Homeschool Grade 7 student Campbell Schneider found the story amazing, he said. “I’ve never really seen anything like that, haven’t heard of false killer whales before.”