Sperm Whales vs. Orcas


"Basically, the sperm whales had huddled together like logs, creating a protective wall
against the orcas."
- Shawn Heinrichs

Photographer Shawn Heinrichs of Blue Sphere Media was on a boat off the southern coast of Sri Lanka when he saw something you don't see every day: a pod of sperm whales battling a pack of killer whales.

“We saw the water churning on the horizon,” said Shawn Heinrichs, a photographer and filmmaker who was in the area looking for blue whales. Heinrichs and his colleagues steered their boat toward the patch of white water. As they got closer, they saw an enormous dorsal fin slicing through the water — a killer whale trademark — and then noticed the group of sperm whales, clustered together in a defensive stance.

At that point, Heinrichs did what many of us would not do: He jumped in.

“I grabbed my camera and slid off the side of the boat,” he said. “There was a frothing, dark pile of shapes ahead of me. When I drifted away from the boat, the largest orca in the pod made a beeline for me but veered off at the last moment and dove deep.”

Nadia Drake of Wired has more: Link


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