Marine Battle Captured: Rare Footage Reveals Harbour Seal’s Remarkable Feat of Snacking on a Giant Pacific Octopus

It’s also easy to think of the plump little harbour seal as a prey animal: an almost bitesized morsel for orcas and white sharks – and even, at or around haul-outs, vulnerable to coastal grey wolves and brown bears.

But give this wee sea-beastie its due. Harbour seals aren’t just sluglike nappers, great-white popcorn, and orca footballs: They’re also versatile and efficient marine predators, active hunters of a whole array of fishes as well as crustaceans and mollusks.

And while it well outsizes most of its own prey, the seal also sometimes sets its sights on pretty hefty quarry.

Pretty hefty multi-armed quarry, in the case of some rare footage nabbed on January 21st in the coastal brine of British Columbia. Divers off Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island found themselves with front-row seats to a harbour seal’s vigorous attacks upon a giant Pacific octopus:

The giant Pacific octopus is, along with the seven-arm octopus, the biggest of its kind: Large specimens can well exceed 45 kilograms (100 pounds) and, exceptionally, span close to six metres (20 feet) across. We’re talking about as close to the mythical kraken as you can get (if you take that sea monster to be a gargantuan octopus rather than squid).

One of the two divers who witnessed the attack, Maxime Veilleux, a marine biologist, told Victoria, British Columbia’s Times Colonist that this seal-harried octopus was a male roughly two metres (6.6 feet) long. It discharged ink in its attempt to elude the marine mammal, which nonetheless was able to grab and ultimately tear off one of its eight arms.

This isn’t the first seal attack on giant Pacific octopuses caught on camera: In 2015, a harbour seal was photographed dispatching one off Victoria’s Ogden Point, where a couple of years before onlookers had filmed another seal/octopus encounter that didn’t end well for the cephalopod:

Sia

Related Posts

Battle for the Feast: Lion Defends Buffalo Kill Against Hyenas, Ultimately Overwhelmed by Pack’s Sheer Numbers

A lion realised he had bitten off more than he could chew when he briefly battled with a large hyena clan over a freshly killed buffalo in…

Savannah Showdown: Wildebeest’s Brave Resistance Throws Attacking Lion, Achieves Victory Over Two Predatory Big Cats in Epic Stand

These are the amazing scenes as a wildebeest fights off a pair of lionesses who were planning to dine upon the large animal. This is the moment…

Intense Wildlife Duel: Two Bull Elk Lock Horns in a Battle, While Cow Elk Nearby Remains Unfazed

Anyone want to try and break up the fight between these two bull elk? No? Didn’t think so. You’d have to be the perfect mixture of courageous…

Fearless Encounter: Small Grizzly Bear Stands its Ground Against Aggressive Wolves in Yellowstone National Park

Usually having the high ground in a battle is beneficial, but it didn’t work out like that in this Yellowstone National Park standoff. The grizzly bear in…

A tense standoff unfolds: Lioness retreats to a tree as protective elephant defends her territory in the Central Serengeti.

The lioness made the potentially fatal mistake of entering the elephant’s territory, and when she was discovered the grey beast was, quite literally, hot on her tail….

Epic Video: Mother Rhino’s Heroic Stand Against Massive African Elephant to Safeguard Her Baby in Heart-Pounding Jungle Encounter

This is the incredible moment a mother rhino took on a much bigger elephant that tried to chase the pair away from a waterhole. The footage was…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *