Orca versus Great White: when “news” is actually really old

An incident which occurred at the Farallon Islands, on October 4, 1997, involving an orca attack on a white shark has somehow become “news” this weekend, at least on the ABC News website. The incident which was documented on video (and has been available on YouTube for years) is currently being featured on National Geographic Channel’s Wild series in an episode titled “The Whale That Ate Jaws.”

I have no idea why this story is back in the news this weekend (except for the fact that there’s a NatGeo show about it), although it is an interesting story, nonetheless. Also of interest was the resultant observed behavior of white sharks around the Farallon Islands after the predation occurred. According to a National Wildlife Magazine article the white sharks typically found around the Farallon Islands from September to December simply “vanished” after the orca attack on the white shark. The sharks did not return until the next fall. For a more in-depth discussion of the October 1997 event, as well as information about the “L.A. pod” of orcas and a possible second orca attack in 2000, check out the Showdown at Sea from National Wildlife Magazine.


  1. Jeremy W. says:

    I was unaware that the White and the Megaladon shared the oceans until I read the Showdown at Sea piece from National Wildlife Magazine.

    Very interesting post, seems that it is likely that the shark with the 2 large bite wounds from October may have have been the victim of an Orca attack.

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