Did the killer whale get its infamous nickname by flinging innocent seals through the air?
An amazing video shows a Superman-esque seal flying through the sky after an orca's splashing tail flings it up to the heavens. A witness heard in the video suggests the seal could have been at least 80 feet high at its apex.
Videographer Mike Walker was shooting for Eagle Wing Tours, a company that provides whale watching tours, when he caught the footage on Oct. 25 off the coast of Victoria, Canada.
"We do a ton of whale watching, but this is fairly rare. Brett Soberg, owner of Eagle Wing, mentioned to us that it’s only the fourth time he’s seen an orca do that in about 20 years. It was spectacular. You can hear me yelling, ‘Yes!’ over and over in the video," he told HuffPost Canada.
Named T69C, the whale was born in 1995 and was the lone male in his group, according to information on the YouTube video blurb.
The whale chased the seal prior to flinging it out of the water.
Orcas prey on seals, but cetacean researcher Chris Parsons told Earth Touch News Network the video more likely captures a form of practice.
"They don't often eat the seals [after hitting them]," Parsons said.
"But when they hit Dall's porpoises, they do it to eviscerate them. They hit them so hard that their entrails pop out, which they leave behind after eating the muscle and blubber."