The first orca to be catalogued in New Zealand is known officially as ‘NZ1’. She also has the nickname of ‘A1’, which results from an early alphanumeric system of cataloguing groups of orca and individuals within the group. The ‘A’ stands for the first group catalogued, and the ‘1’ indicates she was the first identified animal. She was first photographed in 1977, when she was already an adult. This would make her born around 1966 (and around 47 years old at the moment).
Recently photographed off the coast near the Orca Research & Education Centre, Tutukaka, A1 was seen with part of her distinctive fin missing. Comparison photographs clearly show that she can be matched to earlier images allow us to confirm that her fin has changed recently.