Killer Whales Are Killing Great White Sharks To Eat Their Livers | 22 Words

Killer whales and great white sharks are two of the strongest creatures to live in the ocean. Both pray on other creatures for food, but it turns out killer whales don't just go for those smaller and weaker than themselves.

Read on to find out why great white sharks are now on the menu for these majestic whales...

Killer whales are truly a remarkable species...

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But sadly, there is a horrible misconception surrounding these beautiful creatures.

These whales, who are commonly known as orcas, are very popular in captivity.

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Since the 1960's when the world's first-ever killer whale was captured and placed into captivity in California, the species has become one of the most popular and high-demand marine mammals for aquariums.

Their high intelligence made them easy to train...

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And it didn't take long for organizations such as SeaWorld to start using them in live performative shows.

Over the years, SeaWorld have built their brand based on killer whales...

And Shamu the orca is now world-famous.

But things behind the scenes most certainly aren't as happy as they look.

The proclaimed 2013 documentary Blackfish outlined the horrors that go on behind the captivity of killer whales and other marine life... and SeaWorld certainly has a lot to answer for.

Killer whales and other marine mammals should not be kept in captivity.

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These poor whales spend their entire lives in huge tanks which causes them great stress and frustration. Just imagine spending decades in a bathtub. That's exactly how it feels for these unfortunate killer whales.

And even though killer whales are known for their gentle and intelligent natures...

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Being cooped up in captivity has caused them to lash out over the years and numerous SeaWorld trainers have been severely injured.

In February 2010, SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by Tilikum - one of the park's largest killer whales.

Dawn's death not only sparked outrage over the captivity of killer whales, but it also created a sense of fear over these "unpredictable" and "terrifying" animals.

It's important to note that there aren't any recorded killer whale attacks on humans out in the wild...

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And this alarming behavior simply comes from being kept in a plastic tank for their entire lives.

Killer whales are actually very emotional and social animals...

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Who show very little danger to humans.

But, they do show danger to other creatures.

Even those just as big.

Killer whales off the coast of South Africa are thought to now be hunting and killing great white sharks.

Yep, you heard that right. Great white sharks. The information comes from a new government report that claims the great whites are being killed for their livers.

Orcas are actually top of the food chain, suggesting that great whites could be a fairly easy target...

And the whales are thought to be ripping out the fatty livers with their teeth. Ouch.

False Bay, which is off of the coast of Cape Town, has seen at least 7 great white shark carcasses washed ashore since 2017.

All with teeth marks suggesting they were savaged by killer whales.

Great whites are a big tourist attraction in Cape Town and sadly, the decrease has put this at risk.

Many visitors opt to see the creatures from tour boats and those brave enough can even go view them from protective shark cages.

Some believe the decrease in numbers is down to many reasons, of course...

Among them are climate change, hunters and over population.

But, a panel of experts gathered by South Africa's Minister of Environment Barbara Creecy have found otherwise.

The Daily Mail reported that they found the decrease in numbers is "more likely a shift in distribution ... as a result of recent orca occurrence and predation, rather than being related to the fishing activity."

Between 2010 to 2016, great whites were spotted at False Bay more than 200 times per year, according to conservation organization Shark Spotters.

But in 2019, there was no sighting all year.

Experts have even suggested that the killer whales have developed a taste for squalene, an organic chemical compound found in shark liver oil.

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Sadly though, while the great whites might be in danger of predators, it was also said that "most of that loss is due to habitat degradation and illicit fishing practices".

Barbara Creecy said, "The impact of fishing on the ocean's biodiversity is undeniable and sharks are no exception. Many shark species produce few, live young and cannot withstand unregulated fishing pressure."

Let's hope they find a solution soon, as the lack of great whites could have a big impact on Cape Towns' tourism industry. Keep on scrolling to read about Canada passing the “Free Willy" bill that bans dolphin and whale captivity…