Killer Whales Take Down Tiger Shark

BarcroftAnimalsPublished: December 6, 2016399,168 views
Published: December 6, 2016

A pod of killer whales have been filmed for the first time hunting and killing a tiger shark. The footage, which is believed to be a world-first, was captured off the coast of Costa Rica by underwater photographer Caroline Power and British marine biologist Nicholas Bach.

It shows three killer whales working as a team to force the panicked shark to the surface, wearing it down and taking opportunistic bites at its fins. Eventually, a large bull moves in to deliver the death blow while flipping the shark onto its back in the process - which induces a state of paralysis known as “tonic immobility". The pod then takes turns at eating and stripping the seven-foot shark down to its bare bones before disappearing back into the ocean.

Ms Power, 26, who filmed the footage from a dive boat, said: "I have been lucky enough to witness some amazing things in and on the ocean, but this was unbelievable. I believe this is the first time orcas hunting tiger sharks has been documented - we were all fairly awestruck." The two photographers had previously seen the same pod dismember a hammerhead shark just a few days earlier.

The attack took place at Chatham Bay on Cocos Island, Costa Rica, on September 8.

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    Comments

    5 comments

    • 2 rumbles
      MadddDoggg · 34 weeks ago

      Diving in the open ocean with wild orcas... was Darwin taking the day off?

    • 1 rumble
      IMD_one · 32 weeks ago

      I know that it's just how nature works and that the shark probably would have attempted to have a driver snack but you could actually see fear and panic in the sharks body language. Something I'm all too familiar with so I kinda feel sad for the shark. Ya I know. I'm as dumb as a pageant queen and wish there was no suffering in the world. World peace. LOL Like that's going to happen.

    • 1 rumble
      tkanderson · 32 weeks ago

      Kind-a rough treatment..

    • 1 rumble
      trace63 · 26 weeks ago

      Wow!

    • 1 rumble
      ZenGeekDad · 6 weeks ago

      I'm fascinated at how we humans struggle with our strong instincts as social-animals: applying empathy and in-tribe standards of behavior to other creatures. So orcas are sympathetic to us when they are victims of SeaWorld, and are horrid monsters when they hunt and kill schools of Narwhal for sport (killing vastly more than they could ever eat). This video is another example: who is hero and who is villain? The problem lies in misapplying our instincts where they don't fit. Yet we are built to feel these instincts as surely as the orcas are built with theirs. We can't help it, no matter how out of place those perceptions are.