Incredible, unprecedented footage captures the moment a pod of orcas hunted a humpback whale calf and consumed its tongue.
The amazing moment was filmed off the coast of the Baja California peninsula in Mexico.
Adult humpback whales have little to fear from orcas, and have even been documented protecting other species from killer whales. However, a young humpback calf is vulnerable to attacks from transient killer whales.
Humpback calves seem to be one of their favorite foods. Often, they will only eat the tongue and leave the rest of the carcass for scavengers.
In this case, the hunt when on for over an hour, with the mother humpback whale fighting off the killer whales in vain. When the orcas prevailed, something “truly incredible” — the largest male in the pod spent over an hour circling the boat, holding the young whale in his mouth “almost as if showing off their prize,” according to the description by Whale Watch Cabo.
“It was a bittersweet experience. We love all Cetaceans and animals and were heartbroken as well as in awe as we watched these scenes unfold.”
Watch the video: