Whales are only a text away

With only your phone and internet access, you could be seeing live pictures of whales in the wild at a moment's notice.

Recently announced through the Vancouver Sun, Vancouver based OrcaLab will notify subscribers via text message when a whale comes into view of one of their five cameras.

OrcaLab was founded in 1970 by Paul Spong with the goal of tracking the behavior of killer whale's in the Johnstone Strait. The company recently deployed five cameras in the area — at their home base on Hanson Island, on Parson Island, at Rubbing Beach and two at Cracroft Point, one of which is underwater.

Spong told the Sun that they use underwater listening devices to initially locate whales.

"When we hear orcas in the area we start looking for them with our cameras," he said.

From there, OrcaLab staff members will monitor the cameras and attempt to track the whale. They will often rotate and zoom them to try and get a better look. Once a whale has been found, a text will be sent out notifying subscribers of the siting and which camera to view it on.

The cameras are a joint venture between OrcaLab and Explore.org, a  multimedia company with the goal of educating through film and video.

OrcaLab is one of six companies who currently partner with Explore.org to live stream cameras. Each is geared around a specific animal. They include bears in Katmai, Alaska, sharks off the coast of the Cape Fear area in North Carolina, a kitten rescue service and two companies who train service dogs, one specializing in great Danes and the other in yellow labs.

SMS service alerts are available for all of the different cameras.