The New York Times – Susan Casey.
To learn the orcas’ natural and cultural history is to understand how closely connected a mother and calf are, how tight-knit their bond. Like us, orcas are self-aware, cognitively skilled individuals that communicate using their pod’s signature dialect. Unlike us, their core identity is communal: It encompasses not just themselves, but their family group. The idea that Tahlequah is grieving her dead calf is not some sentimental projection. Science strongly backs it up.