You may have seen this video before. Circulating on the Internet for at least four years, this clip has generated a lot of excitement. Several people have sent it to me by e-mail, and YouTube keeps getting mileage from it. The video shows a killer whale breaching and coming down on top of a nearby kayaker. But things are not always as they seem.
It turns out that the video is the Korean version of a commercial for Poweraid, an energy drink made by Coca Cola, according to Snopes.com, which is a good place to check out Internet rumors and falsehoods.
I have yet to see the English version of this commercial. But the footage of the killer whale breaching without any kayaks around can be seen in the trailer for the movie “Lolita: Slave to Entertainment.”
So it appears that this video has a Northwest connection. As many of you know, Lolita, captured in Puget Sound in 1970, is the last orca from this area to remain alive in an aquarium, and she can be seen doing tricks in Miami.
Meanwhile, opponents of captive orcas continue their effort to return Lolita to Puget Sound, a subject that has been debated in Water Ways over the past year.
Orca Network provides a lot of background information on its Lolita Web page. The organization also holds fundraisers to help in the effort to return Lolita to her native waters.
Since Lolita was captured as a calf, the whale in this video cannot be her. Can anyone can identify the orca that so gracefully crushes a kayaker? Also, if anyone has information about the footage in “Lolita: Slave to Entertainment,” I’d like to hear more.