This diver comes face to face with a hungry killer whale — but the frightening encounter doesn’t go as planned

Joe Parker

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A man came face to face with a killer whale. The encounter was immortalized on video and posted on social networks by a diver who witnessed the scene.

The snorkeler, Aidan Bedford, thought the encounter was going to end very badly. On Instagram, the diver recounted this funny day in the middle of the ocean. The man who goes by wandering.westerner on the social network regularly shares his adventures at sea with his 171,000 followers.

Three days ago, Aidan Bedford had a close encounter with a killer whale. The moment was captured on video by one of his drones. But as he points out in the caption to his video posted on Instagram, Aidan Bedford wasn’t in the water at the time. The diver was safe on his boat, but he thought he was about to witness a violent orca attack.

“This morning, we went out on the water in search of mobula rays and ended up catching many more. First we saw a beautiful blue whale (pictures to come), then we received a message that orcas were about 3 miles north of us. We decided to check it out and when we arrived there were only 3 other boats. From what I could see from our boat, it looked like the orcas were eating food from a recent kill, so I took the drone out to have a look,” writes the diver.

Orcas: dangerous animals?

According to Aidan Bedford’s testimony, the orca seemed disappointed to find a group of humans. The marine mammal was probably expecting to come across turtles or other prey to feed on.
Despite the killer whale’s hunger, a man from one of the other two boats saw fit to jump into the water next to the animal. That’s when Aidan Bedford turned on his drone.

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One of the other boats had swimmers ready to try and slide into the water to see if they could catch a glimpse below the surface… As the swimmers entered the water, the huge male turned to see what was going on. He was probably disappointed to see that it was just silly humans and not another turtle or ray (which, I think, is what they were hunting),” details the diver.

Then, against all expectations, as the man in the water approached the orca, the encounter went very well. While orcas have a reputation for being dangerous predators, they never intentionally attack humans. In this case, the animal passed very close to the diver without harming him.

Aiden Bedford, who witnessed the scene from his drone, offers an explanation. “I think it’s also worth mentioning (…) from my personal experiences and what I’ve witnessed in my many encounters with these animals, I don’t think at any point this orca showed anything other than curiosity. It simply had to investigate. Sometimes orcas turn around and come towards you, they get close and take a good look at you but never touch you. As long as you don’t try to touch them! We humans have bacteria on our hands that can be dangerous for marine mammals, fish, sharks and so on.”

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