A video uploaded to YouTube this week by a Labrador fisherman proves that the sight of killer whales in the wild is enough to amaze and delight even the most seasoned sailors.
The video, posted by user William Larkham Jr. on July 25, shows a small group of orcas hunting among ice pans a short distance away from Larkham's boat off the coast of Labrador. Larkham and his fellow fishermen are entranced, snapping photos and tossing mackerel to the whales. By the end of the video, Larkham estimates there are "50 or 60" orcas swimming in the vicinity of the boat.
Surprisingly little is known about the North Atlantic orca population, though they're believed to be much more abundant than their endangered Pacific cousins. Orca sightings off Canada's Atlantic coast have become increasingly common in the past few years, with tour boat operators and whale researchers speculating that this may be due to the availability of food. Unlike the west coast orcas, which almost exclusively eat Chinook salmon, North Atlantic orcas have been known to feed on various types of fish, seals, and even minke whales.
Check out Larkham's video below: