I would hate to say the orca are predictable but just like clockwork we spotted them as our vessel dropped off the shelf! Foraging behaviour meant they were up and down constantly searching the depths below. They were up for only a minute each time and down for five suggesting they meant serious business.
White water a few hundred metres from the boat caught our attention and it wasn’t long before 3, 4 and 5 splashes were seen… they were surging! It was on!!! Predator versus Prey. Orca versus unidentified. We didn’t travel too far and were just pulling in behind the orca when they came in towards each other and began diving on one particular spot!
The birds, GOSH the birds are onto it. Hundreds of them were swirling above the orcas, ranging from our Shearwaters to the almighty Wandering Albatrosses. We were buzzing at the surface eager to see what the Orcas had below when a sub-adult breached! Oh boy! The predators must be winning and they were getting excited!
A small oil slick appeared which confirmed the predators had won the battle. The anticipation of what exactly the prey could have been, was immense! Was it mammal, or squid or maybe even fish!?
Flashes of meat and squabbles from the birds and we are still none the wiser! Tug-o-war between the birds and tug-o-war between the Orca! Whatever they had just shredded was big and they were parading it off around the boat. Although big, it was quickly pulled apart by sky diving birds and before we knew it we only had photographs…
Jury is still out…. although the suggestion of a swordfish is being thrown around!