I haven’t written about sea monsters for a while so when I found this article I just had to share it with you.
In 1922 a ship steaming along the west coast of Africa found itself entering and area where a terrific battle seemed to have taken place.
Captain Poole described what he saw;
“The sea was for miles blood-red; it took over an hour to get through the battle area. On the surface were some hundreds of whales all of them having suffered in the struggle. Some were just able to move slowly along; few, if any, could move quickly.”
None of the sailors knew what had caused the carnage, but suspected that the whales had been attacked by swordfish.
Can you imagine what it would take to cause such a massive and terrible scene? Miles of blood-red sea and hundreds of dead whales is certainly a sight that would be hard to forget.
I am not sure if whales and swordfish are usually deadly enemies though, I thought that only sharks or killer whales attacked whales.
A little more looking around and I found an article from the Wanganui Chronicle in New Zealand from 1908 about a battle witnessed by sailors between a swordfish and a whale with a calf.
After much thrashing about the whale managed to use its tail to stun the huge swordfish who was then hauled on board the nearby boat and taken off to Auckland to be frozen.
I wonder what kind of horrific battle (sharks, Orcas, swordfish….?) there was to have left such carnage in the path of Captain Poole’s ship. Imagine if they had sailed through the area a little earlier and been caught up in it. Perhaps there would have been no-one left to tell the tale…..