A strange frenzy by orcas that have a preference for liver resulted in the killing of 17 sharks: report

Marine experts have reported that two killer whales, or orcas, were observed living up to their name by killing and feeding on the livers of 17 broadnose sevengill sharks.

This behavior is not uncommon for orcas, as they have been known to hunt and eat this type of shark for years. In fact, a study conducted in 2015 revealed that these two male orcas had a preference for this species.

Recently, in October of last year, a drone was able to capture footage of them in the act.

Marine experts reported that during the weekend, two orcas known as Port and Starboard due to the slant of their dorsal fins, killed over twelve broadnose sevengill sharks in a single day off the coast of South Africa.

The orcas disemboweled their prey and consumed their livers, leaving the remaining shark carcasses to wash up on the beach. Although these killer whales have a reputation for being dangerous, they pose no threat to humans, as reported by Earthsky.org.

“At least 17 sevengill sharks have been killed by infamous killer whale pair Port & Starboard this week in South Africa,” marine biologist Alison Kock wrote on Twitter. “Only the livers were eaten, with the leftover carcasses washing ashore.”

According to Kock’s written account, she and her research team initially observed the orcas hunting sevengill sharks in 2015 and then progressing to great white sharks two years later. Shockingly, the orcas even consumed two pregnant great white sharks.

Some of the other great white sharks were so frightened that they left their previous gathering spot. EarthSky provided an explanation for why the liver is a favored target – it is a large organ, comprising a third of the shark’s body weight, and is rich in fat and nutrients.

Kock speculated that the orcas likely learned through trial and error how to locate and feed on the liver.

“They likely initially learn by experience when first predating a new species,” she wrote. “Once they know where the liver is, or any other body part they are specifically interested in, they will remember it forever & become more efficient.”