While we were looking for Orcas, we suddenly became aware of a group of sea creatures charging at our boat. Their behavior was extremely unusual: They were springing highly out of the water like porpoises - but seemed to be much bigger than porpoises. As they pursued their frantic course directly toward us, it seemed like a scene out of Schätzing's novel "The Swarm." As they came closer, we began to realize that these were Pilot Whales. Their aggressive intent was palpable. At the same time, though, it was becoming clear to us, that we were not their target. They were after the Orca family, which was now coming into view and traveling fast. They were fleeing from the smaller Pilot Whales! We wanted desperately to film what happened next, but we could hardly keep up with the panicked Orcas, who moved ever farther into the distance.
© Stella Maris Film / Screenshot from the film
Even the Pilot Whales, which were closing in on the Orca family were swimming right past us. What a dramatic moment, as the five massive Bulls moved past us like torpedos shooting out of the water! Pilot Whales are smaller than the killer Orcas, and it astounded us to witness the larger Orcas being pursued to the death by their juniors in size and weight. It would have been fascinating to see what happened, if the Pilot Whales actually caught up with the Orcas. But they all were too far out of sight by now, so we had to cease our pursuit. We simply could not keep up with them.