No two killer whales look quite the same. In Nootka Sound, Luna found all the salmon he
wanted for food. L-pod which was his extended family swam far away to the
San Juan Islands.
Orcas or killer whales are highly social animals. That means they
need others of their own kind to make them happy. They hunt together, play
together, and protect each other. The older ones instruct the younger ones in
all the skills they need to survive. When Luna no longer had other whales to
share his time, he became lonely and started looking for attention from
people. He would swim up to boats. If they stopped he would give them a
slight bump. Often he would swim alongside them looking for a friendly
scratch on the back or a belly rub.
When word got out that a killer whale was being friendly to boaters in Nootka Sound, people came from all over to see the wild animal. Luna slowly
was getting tamed. Some person put on a wet suit and tried to ride Luna.
Another time over a hundred persons crowded on a narrow pier in a harbor and
tried to touch Luna as he swam just a few feet away. Luna was a big
sensation with lots of people.
However not everyone was happy about the killer whales interest in humans.
By the end of the first summer he had become so fearless that he was pushing
boats around and had actually broken the rudders of a few of them. He had
also been hurt doing this, getting a big cut over his eye when he bumped
into a sharp propeller.