Orca the dolphin killer

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This is the shocking moment a killer whale leapt from the sea to kill an exhausted dolphin.

The six-ton hunter had chased the female dolphin through the waves before swimming up under her and slamming into her, flipping her 30 feet into the air and breaking her back.

The dolphin died almost instantly and the killer whale, or orca, and the rest of its pod then closed in to devour her and her helpless youngster, turning the sea red.

Orca and dolphin

The six-ton hunter chased the female dolphin through the waves before slamming into her, flipping her 30 feet into the air

What makes this remarkable is that it was witnessed by a group of tourists – experts said a sighting of killer whales hunting a dolphin was ‘almost unheard of’.

The drama happened at a seaside beauty spot called Black Rocks, in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand.

A tour party on a nature cruise were on a boat just 50 yards away when one  of the female whales attacked the dolphin with her young pup.

Orca and dolphin

Astonishing attack: The orca toys with the exhausted dolphin

Rob Hunt, boss of Explore Images, which  arranged the tour, said the killer whale chased its prey after apparently singling it out.

He said: ‘It chased it for several minutes, playing with it before flicking the unfortunate creature about ten metres into the air, breaking its back on her nose. ‘I have never known anything like this before to be captured on film.

‘This is mother nature at its most brutal, a rare occurrence that it was seen by humans, and even more rare that it was captured on camera. It is very real when you see these photos of just how fierce killer whales are.’

Orca

Fatal flip: The orca breaks the dolphins back- killing her almost instantly

The dolphin was a species known as the False Killer Whale or Pseudo Orca, because it shares similar characteristics to killer whales.

Marine mammal scientist Rochelle Constantine said: ‘Pseudo Orca are dolphins with all the characteristics of an orca – except a lot smaller, and no match for the real thing.’

Last month a killer whale killed its trainer at Seaworld in Florida by pulling her into its pool.

www.dailymail.co.uk

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