July 18, 2017
A group of fishermen were filmed screaming in fear as a pod of killer whales rammed into the side of their small boat in the sea.
In the footage, recorded by the men onboard the vessel, the huge mammals can be seen swimming to the surface of the water.
They then head towards the boat as it floats in the Pacific Ocean.
The pod rises and falls in the water as the men, who are speaking Russian, start laughing and joking about whether they should attempt to catch one of the orcas in the net.
But as the killer whales get much closer, with their huge fins breaking the surface, the men suddenly become quiet.
One of the animals starts pushing the boat with its nose, shocking the fishermen, who begin to shout.
For a few moments it seems as if one of the other orcas has joined in too.
Fortunately, the incident was over in seconds and after passing underneath the boat, the pod of whales swam away.
After the footage was posted online, one viewer suggested the killer whales were simply playing with the fishermen.
One man said: “Wonderful fishing day, wonderful catch, killer whales, nature, active recreation with family and friends.”
There are few recorded cases of killer whales threatening humans, but captive orcas have been known to kill.
The most infamous was Tilikum the killer whale who was involved in the death of three people.
On February 2, 1991, 21-year-old Keltie Byrne was drowned after falling into the killer whale pool, containing Tilikum, at Sealand of the Pacific in British Columbia, Canada.
Daniel Dukes, 27, was found dead over the whale’s back on July 6, 1999 after apparently sneaking into the enclosure at SeaWorld, Orlando, Florida, USA.
And on February 24, 2010, 40-year-old Dawn Brancheau was killed while working as a SeaWorld trainer.