A series of orca attacks on boats near Gibraltar set off alarm bells and the birth of various theories.
One of them claims that Gladis, a “traumatized” whale whose original name is ‘White Gladis’, could be the leader of a ‘gang’ whose members are ‘taught’ to hit boats or sailboats.
This is his story that became a trend after the spread of a viral video and dozens of incidents on the Spanish and Portuguese coasts.
The newspaper El Comercio of Peru explained that it all started in the port of Barbate, Cádiz (Spain), when since May 2020 a group of orcas in the Iberian Peninsula drew attention by attacking and sinking boats in the area. These animals would throw themselves over the rudders of the sailboats and then move away.
The events have not stopped and that female gained greater notoriety when the ship’s captain, Werner Schaufelberger, indicated that an alleged vengeful attitude on his part was the beginning of everything after the attack on the sailing ship “Champangne” on May 4 where he said that two whales small ones imitated the tactics of a larger orca.
In a report, Nat Geo said that nine orcas participated in the attacks in two groups: a trio or quartet of juveniles and a group of different ages led by a mature female named ‘White Gladis’.
They suggested that Gladis may have suffered an accident with a boat and adopted revenge behavior, which was later imitated by the younger ones.
“When it started happening, I thought maybe a female or her calf had been injured by a ship’s propeller or rudder, because they always seem to go for the rudder. And all on sailboats,” said Dan Olsen, a biologist.
Experts believe that White Gladis may have suffered a “critical moment of agony”, such as colliding with a boat or being trapped during illegal fishing, which altered her behavior in a “defensive” way.