Paula Luckhoff26 May 2024 | 18:00

VIDEO: Man fined for attempting to 'body slam' orca

The New Zealand Department of Conservation said the man's antics displayed a shocking and stupid attitude to protected marine mammals.

VIDEO: Man fined for attempting to 'body slam' orca

Screebshot of man diving in attemtpt to 'body slam' an orca from video posted by New Zealand's Department of Conservation on X

A man who wanted his antics with an orca in the wild recorded, has fallen foul of New Zealand's Department of Conservation (DOC).

A video shared to Instagram and reported to the DOC, shows the culprit diving from a boat into the water near two orca  off the coast of Devonport.

He's now been slapped with an infringement fine of over R6 000 (600 New Zealand dollars).

Officials said his antics appeared to be a deliberate effort to touch or 'body slam' the adult male orca.

At one point in the video the man yells 'I touched it' to other people on the vessel, before asking 'did you get it?'.

They laugh and cheer as they watch.

The DOC said the man showed 'reckless disregard' for his own safety, and that of the adult male orca with a calf swimming near the boat.

“The video left us genuinely stunned. As well as the initial attempt to dive onto the animal, the man stays in the water and then swims toward it again in a second attempt to touch it."
"This is stupid behaviour and demonstrates a shocking disregard for the welfare of the orca. It is extremely irresponsible".
Hayden Loper, Principal Investigation Officer - New Zealand DOC

The DOC said the incident was a very clear breach of New Zealand's Marine Mammals Protection Act, and thanked people who continue to alert them to potential breaches of wildlife laws.