Nanaimo: Killer Whales Attack Dolphins


B. McPherson
Killer whales herd and kill white-sided dolphins

Monday a pod of transient Killer Whales demonstrated to the public how they got their name. Ferry passengers leaving Departure Bay in Nanaimo witnessed a large pod of the orcas herding a large group of dolphins into shallow water. They then proceeded to slaughter them.

Amateur video footage showed the killer whales leaping into the air and diving. The dolphins were fleeing as best they could. As the scene was being filmed ferry passengers were heard laughing and expressing awe at the movements of the orcas. They probably had no idea what was really happening.

Most people on the coast know only our resident population of orcas. These whales depend on salmon for their diet. They are not usually interested in eating seals or dolphins. There is another population of killer whales that pass through Georgia Strait periodically. They hunt marine mammals.

As efforts to return the Strait to health have begun to pay off, there has been a resurgence in the number of whales, seals, dolphins and California sea lions.

We have much to learn about the marine mammals and their movements. Recently it was discovered that a third group of killer whales live in the open ocean attacking and eating sharks.

For some stunning footage, check out the local CTV video.

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