The Killerwhale tribe can be found in the Gitxsan (though called Fireweed Clan), Nisga'a, Tsimshian, and Tlingit to name a few. The Killerwhale is a very important crest and mythic being to each group and is referenced in our stories and art. The Killerwhale is recognized as clan ancestors and reincarnated chiefs. They are associated with strength, dignity, prosperity, and longevity.
It is believed that Killerwhales inhabit ancient villages deep in the ocean and shed their black and white skins and live as humans there. When a chief dies, the Killerwhale will come close to shore to carry the chief's spirit.
Like the wolf, the Killerwhale are familial and are always seen in pods. The Killerwhale is also known as Protector of the Sea and Sea Wolf. This is why I have a 'watcher' in my killerwhales' dorsal fin and a wolf within its' body.
I love the Killerwhale and love the environment in which it lives. My ancestral name, which was carried by my grandmother and many grandmothers before, is Wihl Buun. It translates to the 'splash made by the whale's tail as it hits the surface of the ocean'. Love and Light.
Photo Credit: Siobhan Rosalie