A year has gone by. And this year, at least for a while Onyx was with the L subpod which consists of several matrlines. Who specifically among those? I think the answer is, 'only he knows for sure.' How would we know since they haven't been in the inland waters much at all this year.
The whales travel is changing, social groupings are changing and social groups are different, more so than in years past... 1) when there were more intact family groups, 2) when there were more whales in the entire community, 3) when they were here on a consistent basis as they 'used to be' in the spring, summer and fall, 4) when they didn't have to spread out for miles in search of food, 5) when there were fewer interruptions to their own personal lives, etc...
We know more of what they aren't doing than what they are doing.
For example, even though he was with that L subpod earlier in the year, word was that recently Onyx showed up with J Pod. HOWEVER, it wasn't clear if he was the ONLY L Pod whale present.
We know that he has 'connections' with each pod, as they all do, but he seems to have a different connection. Could it be from him having switched pods several times that he 'has connections' with each? Could it have anything to do with him having been with Granny J-2 (the matriarch of the SRKW community until her death in 2016) when she was still alive? Did he receive some kind of 'status' from that? (just grasping at straws here.)
Only the whales know for sure.
All I know is that I care and I hope you care and want these whales to survive and to recover from the downfall that has been occurring to their community for the last several years. Actually it's more than just several years. When I first came here in the late 1990's the SRKWs were being referred to as 'like the canary in the coal mine'.
If you don't know what 'like a canary in the coat mine' means then please look it up. It's serious and it matters.
May Onyx live long and keep us wondering. Hopefully enough people will see how important all the whales in the SRKW Community are that they are willing to change what they are doing to help them recover.
Thanks for reading this, if you did.