Although two killer whales might have wanted to say hello, two children who were out for a swim on Enclosure Bay in New Zealand didn’t exactly feel the same way, and it’s easy to see why.
Video filmed by Brett Thom just outside of Auckland has been getting a lot of attention on the internet, especially from orca experts who saw it and wanted to clear up a few things about these gigantic creatures.
The good news is, as afraid as these kids were, the killer whales weren’t a real threat to be killers in this situation.
Poppy Halliday told the Sidney Morning Herald that behavior the children saw as menacing was typical “curious” orca activity not much different from people walking through a crowd “down the middle of a footpath.”
Halliday said that the whales probably “echo-located” the children, swam towards them to investigate and determined that they were “two little humans and kept moving.”
Most importantly this whale expert noted that there has “never been an attack by orca on humans in the wild that anyone’s aware of.”
When you watch the video you hear Brett Thom urging the kids from afar not to move and to stay calm. Easy for Thom to say, of course, but he wasn’t wrong.
The crying children were brought to land without incident and the whales carried on with their whale business.