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'I just kind of held my breath': Boater in Saanich Inlet has close encounter with orcas

Mosiah Flores was on his way to check prawn traps in the inlet when four orcas approached his boat, and two swam right underneath it, showing their white bellies.

A boater in Saanich Inlet had an “incredible” and “nerve wracking” encounter with orcas last week when they swam right under his boat.

Mosiah Flores was on his way to check prawn traps in the inlet on Thursday morning when he saw four orcas in the distance. He cut his engine and waited for whales to disappear, expecting them to swim away.

Instead, they approached his boat. Two swam right underneath the 22-foot boat, showing their white bellies.

“If I was standing on the bow, I would have been able to touch them,” he said.

Flores captured the whales on video, first in the distance as their dorsal fins cut through the water, and then two large white bellies swimming below his boat.

“I just kind of held my breath. And you know, when they passed me, I was like, the shock was there,” he said.

The largest orca appeared to be about the length of his boat, and the other three were a bit smaller, Flores said.

Flores said he always looks for orcas when he’s on the water, but never expected to have an encounter like this.

“I felt pretty lucky.”

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