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Old 09-17-2019, 02:09 PM   #1
Bob Ballew
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Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

...The spotter plane pilot put the whale watch boat onto a rare sight...In a pod of 8 orcas in the Catalina channel, was one that stood out. The fairly recently born calf was light grey, almost white in comparison to his brethren who were all dark black.
...This pod was identified as a family that ranges from Canada, as far south as Baja. Two new females have joined the group. Only one other albino calf is known to exist, one that is currently off the coast near Vancouver, Canada. It is also a newborn. Scientists are trying to figure out what caused the two variations, whether it was from the same adult parent with a genetics variance or just an odd twist of nature that is unrelated. Unknown if this Catalina channel group is the same as the pod feeding off the west end of San Clemente island a few days ago..
...Good news: The entanglement of whales in fishing gear is down. Due to fewer whales or better designs of gear? Unknown at this time...Is all this, dive related?..No, but interesting anyway, especially if you are in the water when orcas swim up to you and just for fun, decide to start a game of dodgeball with you as the ball....
...

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Old 09-17-2019, 02:38 PM   #2
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Re: Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

Do orcas attack divers like great whites do?
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Old 09-17-2019, 05:30 PM   #3
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Re: Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

...I am aware of at least 3 close-up encounters with only one minor injury. A San Diego diver incurred a slight foot injury when an overly curious orca nipped his foot.
... A commercial ab diver had a fright when a pod came in on him, causing his tender on deck to panic and start pulling his hose in rapidly. He looked back and saw the pod following right behind...Fortunately, they were just curious about the trolled bait and did no harm...Then, a female trainer was drowned at Sea World when an orca grabbed her long hair, pulled her in and swam around the pool, towing her. She drowned before they could rescue her.. But, confining an orca in a small pool could cause unexpected results if they get depressed or angry...Several "X" thrill divers have jumped in with them to get photo ops without injury....not the brightest cupcakes in the box....just don't do it when they are having a bad hair day....
...On the other hand, there are several instances of pilot whales grabbing free divers and taking them down. One female free diver off Hawaii almost drowned as a result of getting too close, which apparently irritated the whale enough to grab her leg and descend about 30'...It finally released her but, it was a close call...Me: I try to stay out of situations wherein I might join the, "Me for Lunch Bunch".....

Last edited by Bob Ballew; 09-18-2019 at 02:58 PM.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:27 AM   #4
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Re: Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

Thanks. My perception was that they were not as aggressive toward divers as GWS, but I would never knowingly go into the water when one (or a pod) was around.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:38 PM   #5
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Re: Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

According to Wikipedia there has never been a recorded human fatality from a wild orca(the same is actually true for hammerhead sharks).

With that statistic in mind I dont think it would be unsafe to dive with them.

And says a lot about what captivity does to their behavior.
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:40 PM   #6
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Re: Rare Baby Orca is a Headscratcher...

Was lucky enough to see some orca on a nitrox cert dive. Pretty cool.
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Originally Posted by Lukebiker View Post
And says a lot about what captivity does to their behavior.
Nah. Just a lot more contact with humans and the odds go up. Think white shark - how many attacks? Negligible in the wild, despite the fact that they appear more aggressive than orca.
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