Table 4

Summary of Inuit interviewee information and observations of killer whale attacks on narwhals, and observations of dead narwhals that were killed by killer whales.

Observations and information on killer whale attacks on narwhals

Region


Foxe Basin*

Hudson Bay

North Baffin

South Baffin

Total


Interviewees reporting first-hand observations

5

4

13

2

24


Interviewees reporting second-hand observations and stories

1

3

4


Interviewees providing descriptions of attacks and attack methods

3

9

2

14


Killer whales:


...herd narwhal to a suitable location with deep enough water, and circle to keep them stationary and prevent their escape

2

1

3


...tire out the narwhal prior to commencing an attack

1

1

2


...drown narwhal

2

2


...ram narwhal "to break their ribs"

1

5

6


...bite narwhal in the middle of the body, carry them in their mouth

2

3

1

6


...throw narwhal into the air, hit them with their tail and play with them, tear them apart and throw the pieces around

1

4

1

6


...leave lots of oil and scraps of blubber on the water

1

1

2

4


Interviewees reporting dead narwhals that were killed by killer whales

3

7

7

17


Interviewees providing descriptions of dead narwhals

2

6

6

14


Hunters find dead narwhals:


...that are all busted up, with broken ribs

2

1

3

6


...that are covered with bite marks, with chunks and pieces missing

5

3

8


...that are killed but not eaten, killed for fun

2

1

3


...that are being scavenged by birds

1

1


...that meat and maqtaq can be collected from

3

3


* five Foxe Basin interviewees observed attacks on narwhal, but most occurred in other areas (Admiralty Inlet, 1; Pond Inlet, 1; Lyon Inlet, 2)

Ferguson et al. Aquatic Biosystems 2012 8:3   doi:10.1186/2046-9063-8-3

Open Data