As I sat contemplating the bisecting of the yin yang circle with its S-curve, the dark and the light sides with their light and dark centers respectively, I saw a Beluga and an Orca. The half mask in the fin of the orca representing birth and death came as I drafted it onto my paper, furthering the dichotomy of the symbol.
The Beluga: Delphinapterus leucas
These are medium sized whales reaching a length of about sixteen feet. In the Pacific they range from the Gulf of Alaska and throughout the Bering and Beaufort Sea. Pregnant cows give birth in shallow warm water and then they feed in the rivers. The calves are gray or brown at birth and only lighten gradually over a five to six year period. These whales are often nicknamed the Ghostly Screamers or Sea Canaries because of their whistles and other vocal sounds. These are made in the air passages of the head and then broadcasted through the forehead, which changes shape as they send and receive sounds. In the tail is a ringed seal pup still in its white baby fur (lunago) in the ice cave his mother built to protect him from the likes of the polar bear and cub pictured in this Beluga’s head.
The Polar Bear: Urus maritimus
This is our only white bear. They are large, weighing from six to eleven hundred pounds with a body length of six feet and a four-foot shoulder height. Ranging from the north coast of Alaska and Canada and on Artic Ocean ice floes and Islands. Polar bear roam widely and are fierce hunters. They are well adapted to their arctic environment with their white camouflaging fur, which is waterproof on their undersides. Their voice is a roar.
The Orca or Killer Whale: (Orcinus orca)
Growing to a length of thirty-one feet males are slightly larger than females but killer whales are matriarchal. Bulls live to around fifty years while females live closer to one hundred. They live in huge pods each with their own dialect. These giant pods dominate the best fishing areas and smaller pods and single bulls driven by hunger use their fifty cone shaped teeth on ferocious attacks against seals, porpoises, dolphins, and even larger baleen whales. There are no reliable records of unprovoked attacks against humans. Within the orca is one of his swimming companions the:
The Pacific White-sided Dolphin
Found in deep temperate waters of the Northern, North Pacific this is a particularly energetic, acrobatic and inquisitive dolphin. They reach lengths of 5 1/2 to 8 ft. (1.7 to 2.4m) and weigh from 185to 330lbs. (85-150kgs.) They are known for producing sprays of water called “rooster tails”. Common group size is 10 to 100 though pods up to 2000 have been recorded. These pods often split up to feed but rejoin to travel.