VANCOUVER ISLAND, B.C. — A seal narrowly escaped being eaten by some hungry killer whales on Monday.
The mammal jumped onto the back of a tour boat to escape the swarming pod of orcas.
Nick Templeman, who runs Campbell River Whale and Bear Excursions, captured the moments after the seal took refuge on the boat.
“Once he got a look at the boat, he made a straight beeline for us,” Templeman said.
As if a seal jumping on your tour boat wasn’t exciting enough, things got even more interesting for this sightseeing group. About a dozen orcas started circling the boat trying to find their prey.
“We had four or five orcas all at once sitting at the back of the boat straight up and down sort of looking at the seal,” said Templeman. “They would dive and they would all disappear — about 12 of them — and you can see shape after shape trying to come up from under the boat.”
The tour group was boating off the coast of Vancouver Island, which is off Canada’s Pacific Coast. This area is known for its vast whale watching adventures.
“The seal did get scared during the encounter,” said Templeman. “He would get in the water, swim back up and get back on the boat.”
Templeman, who has been whale watching for 20 years, said he hasn’t seen an orca hunt this extreme.
“This was not one family group but three or four family groups.”
After about 30 minutes, the whales gave up and moved on.
“The seal took a few minutes, went into the water, hesitated around the engines and then left,” said Templeman.
Kirk Fraser, who posted the video on YouTube, wrote about the video: “We were out with the family looking for whales and a pod of 12 transient killer whales where chasing the seal. It ripped towards the boat in a desperate escape and scrambled on the deck. It fell off three times in panic and finally stayed on until the whales gave up after about 30-45 minutes. Most intense epic experience ever. Love you Nature. What a lucky seal”
**For the full YouTube video, see below. WARNING: The video does contain explicit language**