Since the original killer whale necropsy and disease testing protocol was drafted 2004, considerable advances have been made in defining pathologic processes in stranded killer whales and assessing their potential impact on individual and population health.  Case definitions for forensic investigations have been refined and special studies to assess the impact of sound on ear ultrastructural anatomy have been developed.  These protocols will be invaluable with suspect blast or sonar related strandings.  The killer whale necropsy and tissue sampling protocol was updated to reflect these scientific advancements, further refine and standardize tissue sample collection and identify research personal who may assist with stranding incidents.  

The protocol is available for download at: