Kayakers' unexpected encounter

Last updated 14:00 11/12/2013

A large orca came close numerous times to Rob Boyle on his 4.1m ocean kayak.

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A quiet morning's kayak fishing with my friend Rob Boyle near Glenduan, Nelson, yesterday took an unexpected but pleasant turn with the arrival of a small pod of orca.

We had anchored our kayaks in about 15 metres of water off the boulder bank between the marine reserve and the aquaculture park when the first one arrived, cruising up and down the area we were in.

They came very close to the kayaks a number of times, rolling on their side to inspect us, or sitting in place poking their heads out.

I had the distinct impression we were being scrutinised closely. It was an incredible experience to have these gentle giants come so close. They basically just hung out with us for a couple of hours.

At no point did they show any signs of aggression, but we felt very privileged to have them around. A day to be remembered for sure.

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