Witness accounts of bloody battles.
"1900::Swordfish vs. Whale"
Clips: The Province (1955)/Victoria Daily Times (1900)
Imagine sitting on the deck of a BC Ferry and witnessing a most formidable battle between two creatures of the deep sea. Such is a rare sight in the Pacific Northwest, but certainly not undocumented. In fact, in the late 1800s and early 1900s, several accounts of bloody battles were witnessed in the waters around Vancouver Island and reported in the newspapers. Many witnesses believed that thresher sharks were the swordfish's accomplices.
"1910::Threshers: A Swordfish Accomplice"
Clip: Vancouver Daily World (1910)
In the spring of 1910, a ship arrived in Seattle, and its passengers told a tale of a whale that had fought for its life off Cape Flattery. The fifty-foot whale had been fighting long and hard in a battle against a swordfish and thresher sharks. The thresher sharks repeatedly jumped high out of the water and slammed down on the whale, the force of their full weight knocking the creature senseless. Each time the whale dove down to seek safety in deeper water, the swordfish seemed to pierce its underbelly, forcing the leviathan to rise to the surface to meet the threshers again. After an hour of the vicious attack, the exhausted whale, bleeding and likely rendered blind, rammed itself full speed into the side of the passing ship and sank lifelessly to the bottom of the sea. The shocked and helpless passengers believed it to be the whale's last brave act.