Orcas are the largest of the dolphin family and are beautiful and elegant creatures. The lady in this wonderful footage is blessed to have experienced a swim in the wild with them. She felt safe the whole time – there are no reports of orcas attacking humans in the wild.

A Magical Swim with Orcas

This lady had a black wetsuit on and was conscious that she looked like a seal. However, the orcas must have sensed that she was something quite different. Orcas eat both sea lions and seals (as well as sharks and rays) but they made no attempt to eat this human swimmer. Her whale companions looked like an adult, a juvenile, and a calf. One got so close that their nose was practically touching her toes at one point.

The footage of swimmer Judie Johnson was shot in New Zealand at a location where she swims every day. On this occasion, her swimming companions had not turned up so she was swimming alone. She noticed a shape beneath her and was excited to think that we would be swimming with dolphins but then she saw the distinctive white markings and realized they were orcas. Amazingly, an Australian tourist was also at the beach and launched his drone so that he could capture the moment from above.

The experience was so amazing that Judie decided to re-enter the water for a second swim and, incredibly, the orca joined her again! They were all just feet beyond the breakers and actually looked into each other’s eyes. It’s no wonder that she describes it as a life-changing experience and better than winning the lotto!

Apex predator: Killer whales
Orcas are considered apex predators, but they’ve never been known to attack humans in the wild.

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Wonderful Orcas

Orcas (killer whales) are found in oceans all over the world – including coastal waters. They can live in cold and warm water. Their distinctive appearance makes them instantly recognizable. They have smooth black backs with a large dorsal fin but their bellies are white and they have a white spot behind their eye sockets.

These guys are also large! An adult orca can grow to 32 feet in length and weigh up to six tons – that’s the same as three adult giraffes! These whales breathe using their blow hole but can stay under the water for 10 minutes at a time. They are very social and live in pods of up to around 100 whales, but smaller pods are common. Orcas also like to hang out with some lucky humans!

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