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Rarely Seen 'Type D' Killer Whales Filmed Off Chilean Coast

Credit: Storyful Studio
Published on March 11, 2019 - Duration: 00:44s

Rarely Seen 'Type D' Killer Whales Filmed Off Chilean Coast

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said a team of scientists sailing off the coast of Cape Horn, Chile, in January, managed to film a rarely seen type of killer whale.This footage, released by the NOAA Fisheries team, offers a glimpse of the Type D killer whales.

According to a NOAA Fisheries press release, the killer whales were previously spotted off the coast of Paraparaumui, New Zealand, in 1955, and their unusual appearance was speculated to be a genetic mutation.A photograph of similar-looking creatures taken in the Indian Ocean in 2005 made NOAA Fisheries researcher Bob Pitman realize that the whales might be an entirely new species – potentially “the largest undescribed animal left on the planet,” the statement said.Once Pitman heard that the whales had been spotted once again off the coast of Cape Horn, he assembled a team and finally caught the animals on camera.DNA samples from Type D killer whales were being studied to determine how far removed the mammals are from their more typically-seen counterparts.

Credit: NOAA Fisheries via Storyful

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