When paddle boarder Luke Reilly left his house to hit on Monday, the last thing he would have expected was for him to come face-to-face with one of ocean’s most successful predators.
Yet that is exactly what happened, when a curious killer whale played under Reilly’s board for nearly five minutes.
Boarding about 200m from the coast of Kuaotunu in north of Whitianga, on New Zealand’s North Island, Reilly had been out on the water for only a short period when the inquisitive whale approached.
Watch Reilly's close encounter with the whale by clicking the video below:
Video courtesy of Newsflare
Speaking to local television channel 3 News, Reilly said: “Then this one bee-lined it for me.
“He popped up about 10cm away from the back of my board.
“I was a bit nervous thinking, 'what's this guy going to do?
In the wild, killer whales have a fearsome reputation as one of nature’s most intelligent and effective killers.
They are known for hunting and killing anything from stingrays, to seals, to blue whale calves.
Despite this reputation, they appear to pose no threat to to humans with no deaths involving killer whale attacks on humans in the wild ever being reported.Reuse content