01-12-2013 Orcas Take down a Common Dolphin

What an amazing orca encounter we had today. We came upon an adult female orca (CA138) with her two offspring hunting on the north ledge of the canyon this afternoon. At first they were just cruising and on the prowl. Suddenly they started what I call “power bursts” which indicate they have located a prey item. Today’s unlucky target was a lone common dolphin. This one was fast, though, and had quite an endurance. The trio of orcas chased this little dolphin in a zig-zag pattern for over fifteen minutes before it finally tired and was caught. The ending was a spectacle as only orcas can provide as they flung the poor porpoise up into the air several times. It is hard to watch one of my favorite marine mammals getting chased and killed, but this is nature and orcas are remarkable animals.

About Michael Sack

Boat Captain, Monterey Bay marine life naturalist and guide. Photographer and Videographer.
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