Within the 34 years since Shark Week first launched, the Discovery community has proven footage of sharks leaping, sharks combating, sharks migrating, sharks attacking, sharks being invented (keep in mind the Megalodon?), sharks racing Michael Phelps, sharks sparring with Mike Tyson, and sharks biting a solid member from Jackass.
Suffice it to say, it is exceptional—after three many years and 1000’s of hours of programming—for there to be one thing fully new to indicate viewers who’re ravenous every summer season for shark content material.
Throughout Shark Week filming earlier this 12 months, a drone digicam captured footage of a pack of orca whales (killer whales) killing an amazing white shark. Nothing like this has been captured for Shark Week earlier than, and it’s essential video proof to assist scientists’ theories that nice whites are migrating—or reasonably fleeing—from their regular habitats as a result of they’re being hunted by orcas, a brand new phenomenon.
The beautiful footage will debut on Thursday within the particular Shark Homehowever you’ll be able to see the unique clip right here on the Every day Beast beneath:
Alison Towner, a scientist primarily based in South Africa, has been finding out the motion ecology of nice white sharks for 15 years and has printed a current paper on the orcas’ stunning predation of nice whites.
This footage, she reiterates a number of instances as we communicate over the telephone, is not simply astonishing—it is historic. “It is most likely one of the lovely items of pure historical past ever filmed.”
“I actually do assume as soon as that footage airs, it should go viral,” she tells the Every day Beast. “The entire world goes to enter a frenzy about it as a result of it is simply so distinctive.”
The clip exhibits three orcas in South Africa’s Mossel Bay, an space that had famously been an aggregation website for excellent whites, however has seen them disappearing. The whale within the center involves the floor clenching a lifeless shark in its jaws. The nice white is about nine-feet-long—“so not a tiny animal,” Towner quips—and the orca is biting it round its liver space. You start to see a considerable amount of blood pool across the two different whales whereas the unique dives again down into the water with it.
“We have had all of the proof for killer whales being liable for killing white sharks,” Towner says. Carcasses have washed up on the seaside with their livers lacking. Knowledge revealing a change within the whales’ biking habits and revealing that the white sharks have fled the coasts the place they used to habituate, suggesting a correlation. “However that is the world’s first drone footage of killer whales predating on a white shark. It is the primary time in South Africa it is ever been documented as direct proof.”
Towner’s article within the African Journal of Marine Science goes into extra depth about how these killer whales’ current predation is liable for nice whites fleeing the areas of South Africa the place they as soon as thrived.
Shark Home airs Thursday evening on Discovery and Discovery+. And if you would like to take a look at some extra nice Shark Week footage, try this clip beneath from Air Jaws: High Guna particular about high-flying sharks captured breaching with new state-of-the-art footage.