It turns out that great white sharks aren’t always the hunter – the feared killers of the ocean are prey for orcas.
Autopsies were performed on six bodies of the monster predators that washed up on the South African coast over the years. The results show that the sharks were attacked by killer whales for their nutrient-rich organs.
Marine biologist Alison Towner helped conduct autopsies on six sharks that washed up on the banks of Gansbaai and said orca pods “physically ripped open” the sharks during an appearance on Gemma Care-hosted Shark Talk YouTube channel . Skin just under the throat in a “precise and subtle” way so that the organs slide out. This story was first reported by Newsweek.
There have been reports of killer whales attacking several species of shark off the South African coast since 201
Towner said the autopsies on the great whites took hours, and the team meticulously taken measurements on every part of the shark. “Then we go in to see if there is any sign of trauma that means you can rule out orca predators,” she told Care. “Any boat injuries, fishing lines … trauma that could have caused death. If the animal is lying there with its sixty-pound liver torn out, that’s pretty obvious. “
The attacks on the great white sharks were identical to similar attacks on seven gill sharks in the area, and Towner added, “Just under the surface of the skin is the perfect place to open the shark and access and extract the liver,” so Towner said. “I think two of the animals both had their hearts removed and one man had their testicles removed. Because they are very close there in the body cavity.
“We think the two killer whales have learned to get their pectoral fins. We don’t know for sure. It’s like a tearing movement. The liver … it’s oily, very slippery, it would of course slide out for them to come along and share. “