October 28, 2016
Abel Tasman Park visitors ran to the beach to get a glimpse of a pod of orca foraging close to shore.
Three orca drew a crowd of around 15 visitors when they came within metres of the beach near the Anchorage Hut on Friday morning.
The pod foraged in Torrent Bay before moving towards Boundary Bay where they surfaced near some kayakers who had a memorable photo opportunity to add to their national park adventure.
The Department of Conservation’s Anchorage Hut warden, Phil Armit, said orca were only seen in the park about four or five times a year.
The killer whales – actually the largest species of dolphin – are attracted to Tasman Bay and its tidal estuaries by the prevalence of stingrays, their favourite food.
A pod of orca drew a big crowd when they entered the Nelson Haven earlier this month.