Orcas off Tasmania’s East Coast

Lots of Killer Whale sightings in Tasmania early 2017

Killer Whale Fluke
This young Killer Whale slapped it’s tail only a few meters away from our boat.

We couldn’t have asked for a better start into the new year! A pod of Orcas was sighted off the east and southeast coast of Tasmania several times early this month. We had the pleasure to spend an hour with a male, a female and a juvenile killer whale on our Seal & Ocean Expedition on 2nd January. Yes, we had to extend our trip slightly… 😉

Orca playing off Tasmania's east coast
Wild Orca frolicking in Tasmania’s temperate waters.

The teenage Orca was very inquisitive. He came over and played beside our boat. We watched him roll around upside down, checking us out from underneath. Then he accelerated to grab and bite a jelly fish in half, what he then celebrated with lots of tail slapping. All within meters of our boat.

Underwater video of wild Orcas in Tasmania

The fact that the Orca came so close to our boat allowed us to film him underwater. Here you can watch our underwater footage of a young Killer Whale in the wild, where he belongs! Enjoy 🙂

Orca research in Tasmania

Researchers still don’t know much about the behaviour of Killer Whales in the wild. Their aim is to identify individual animals and to find out more about their diet and distribution. We work closely together with Killer Whales Australia, an organisation dedicated to the conservation of Orcas in Australian waters. Killer Whales can be identified due to their dorsal fins (distinctive shape, nicks and scratches) and their saddle patch (the area just behind the dorsal fin). We try to get high resolution photos of these areas to send off to the Australian Orca Database for their ID catalogue. Researchers are also hoping to collect skin and tissue samples of the Orcas from aboard our vessel, using a modern biopsy method, which can help in identifying their precise diet.

If you would like to be a part of what we do and support ocean conservation whilst enjoying the spectacular coastline of the Tasman National Park, check out our 2-hour Coastal Adventure or half-day Seal & Ocean Expedition and reserve your seat today!