- Pod of relentless orcas can be seen hunting down helpless whale
- The orcas surround the whale before attacking and mauling it on video
- A charter boat full of tourists witnessed the shocking scene off the coast of WA
A pod of relentless orcas have been filmed pursuing and devouring a helpless whale off the coast of Australia.
A charter boat with dozens of tourists on board watched the scene off Bremer Bay on the south coast of Western Australia on Saturday.
The pod of orcas can be seen hunting down a Cuvier’s beaked whale – the first documented attack on this whale species by orcas, Yahoo7 reported.
A pod of relentless orcas have been filmed pursuing and devouring a helpless whale off the coast of Western Australia
By the end of the footage two groups of orcas have closed in on the whale before it is ripped apart.
The water around the whale turns red as the orcas feast on it.
Naturaliste Charters marine biologist Bianca Uyen said the attack was the first she had seen involving such a large number of orcas.
‘This predation involved about 40 to 50 orcas, which is a lot. It’s not only one of the things we rarely see, but also just the sheer amount that were involved,’ she said.
The boat’s skipper Jamie Huxtable told The West Australian he thought the orcas were on the hunt when he noticed their speed had increased.
By the end of the footage two groups of orcas have closed in on the whale before it is ripped apart
‘They don’t just work together within their pod, they communicate and work with other pods in the area,’ he said.
Ms Uyen said orcas are intelligent animals, and she believed they would have been communicating about the whale.
‘Orcas have strong social bonds and structures, and are continuously communicating.’
She said those on board the boat who witnessed the mauling had ‘mixed feelings’ about it – some appreciated the spectacle but others found the attack disturbing.