Although most don’t know it, the sperm whale is generally considered to be the largest predator in the entire world. These toothed whales don’t simply filter water and eat small crustaceans, but actively hunt in the deepest depths searching for their favorite prey. This behavior is rarely seen, although scientists are hoping to learn more. As one video shows, the battles that take place thousands of feet down in the oceanic depths are epic in proportion. Let’s watch a real-life sperm whale battle a giant squid in the deep!

In a short documentary, we get to witness scientists and researchers doing something incredible: attaching a camera to a sperm whale before they go down to hunt. If you know anything about Moby-Dick, you know that catching a sperm whale is a lot easier said than done!

Sperm Whale
Sperm whales are the world’s largest predators.


The crew first starts with a quick overview of what they are going to be doing. The mission: attach a video camera to a sperm whale so they can study how it hunts when it dives to the bottom of the ocean. As cool as the mission is, they first need to find a whale, then they need to attach a camera to it.

Using sonar, the team ends up tracking a pod of whales, hoping to see one breach. When a whale breaches, it comes out of the water, giving the researchers a chance to attach their cameras. In a place as big as the Caribbean Sea, however, it is going to take a while!

Seeking Sperm Whales

After spotting pilot whales, dolphins, and a plethora of other sea creatures, they finally have their sighting. Although it isn’t a great white whale, it IS a sperm whale, the thing they are after. With a heading, the team sets out in their little boat.

Using math and a lot of technology, they finally predict when the whales are going to reach the surface. Once the whales breach, the team acts fast. Using a specially designed suction cup, the researchers try and attach a deep-sea camera to the outside of the whales. Although a suction cup is much harder to attach than something that penetrates the skin, the team knew they didn’t want to harm the animals.

Finally, they had a hit. Placing the suction-cupped camera on the top of the whale, they finally tagged their target (even if their boat took a little damage in the process)! Once the camera were finally attached, the team was able to watch and listen in on the life of these sperm whales. Truthfully, it’s one of the most astounding things ever to be recorded.

Eventually, we get to see what we all want: a hunt. Sperm whales love to eat giant squid and will dive thousands of feet to the pitch-black ocean floor to find them. In the clip, we see the whale diving further and further until finally, it’s silent. Finally, we see it. A sudden rush of movement and everything goes silent as a tentacle drifts into the camera’s view. For the first time ever, a video of a sperm whale hunting a giant squid has been officially documented!

Make sure you check out the video clip below to see it for yourself!

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