Killer Whales Begin Attacking Boats – What Happens After Is Completely Terrifying

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Scientists are searching for answers after a series of attacks on boats off the coast of Spain and Portugal — perpetrated by killer whales.

The animals, also known as orcas, have sunk three different boats off of the Iberian coast since 2020, according to Live Science. They’re believed to have attacked many more vessels.

The orcas have learned how to stop a boat after beginning an attack.

The incidents — which primarily involved sailboats — usually involved the creatures striking a ship’s rudder after approaching from the stern. The whales tended to lose interest after successfully stopping a boat’s movement.

University of Aveiro biologist Alfredo López Fernandez has a theory — that the highly social animals have learned this tactic.

López Fernandez believes that one killer whale that suffered a “critical moment of agony” with a boat learned to become aggressive toward them — and taught this behavior to other animals.

“That traumatized orca is the one that started this behavior of physical contact with the boat,” he said.

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