Orca capital's latest marine visitors

01:08, Jan 11 2013
Orca in Shelly Bay
A pair of orca off Shelly Bay in Wellington.

A Wellington angler witnessed the best free show in town when a pod of orca swam right past him as he fished off the rocks in Evans Bay this morning. 

Doug Quirk said a pod of about five orca - "with a big bull in the middle" - swam past him as he fished from the shore about 1km south of Shelly Bay. 

The orcas passed his fishing spot about 8am and headed down towards Miramar Wharf and the airport.

They frolicked in Evans Bay for about an hour. 

"They headed back out past Shelly Bay about 9 o'clock. They were just doing their normal rounds," Quirk said.

Quirk hit the headlines early last year when he caught a 24kg kingfish off Oriental Bay, and said he had seen orca in Wellington Harbour on many occasions.

"About six months ago they came up past us as we fished off Oriental Bay. I was quite surprised to see them back in the harbour so soon," Quirk said.

Orca generally do not present a threat to humans, although there have been cases of orca in captivity injuring or killing their trainers.

Meanwhile, on Monday a 1.8-metre shark surprised early-morning beach-goers at Oriental Bay as it languished in the shallows before heading back out into the harbour.


The Dominion Post