Fictional whale named

Posted: Sunday, April 16, 2000

SITKA (AP) -- A six-year old Sitka boy won a contest to name a whale featured in an upcoming children's book.

Gus Bruhl's entry beat out 600 other entries from around the country from kids who worked from a drawing by illustrator Evon Zerbetz of Ketchikan.

''Gus says he took one look at the whale's fluke, which had sort of spotted things drawn on it, and almost immediately had an idea for its name: Barnacles,'' said Jan Straley, a Sitka whale expert who's helping Washington-based writer Ron Hirschi with research for the book ''Whale Mail.''

Earlier this month, Hirschi notified Heidi Raffaele, Gus' kindergarten teacher at Baranof Elementary School, that he was the big winner.

''The whole class cheered,'' said Raffaele.

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