Orcas contra tiburones: los aterradores ataques que impresionan a los científicos

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Una autopsia realizada en los cuerpos de tiburones que llegaron con la marea a las playas de Sudáfrica reveló el espeluznante episodio que provocó la muerte de los escualos.

La bióloga marina Alison Towner, quien asistió al procedimiento, compartió algunos detalles impactantes sobre las muertes de los animales en el canal de YouTube Shark Talk.

Towner afirmó que orcas rasgaron la piel de los tiburones debajo de la aleta para poder acceder a los órganos internos del animal. “Allí se encuentra el lugar perfecto para abrir el tiburón, y así acceder y extraer el hígado de manera precisa y refinada”, explicó.

En los últimos meses, la bióloga marina y su equipo examinaron una gran cantidad de ejemplares. Aunque dos de los escualos tenían todavía el hígado intacto, notaron varias marcas que apuntaban hacia un ataque de orcas. “A dos tiburones les sacaron el corazón y a un macho los testículos, que están muy cerca de la cavidad corporal. Creemos que las orcas estaban aprendiendo a agarrar las aletas pectorales”, afirmó Towner.

Los ataques de orcas hacia tiburones frente a las costas de Sudáfrica se remontan hacia 2017, cuando varios escualos, incluidos grandes tiburones blancos, comenzaron a aparecer en la orilla sin sus hígados.

Towner descartó cualquier otra causa de muerte como lesiones causadas por barcos o líneas de pesca. “Cuando el tiburón está tirado allí con su hígado de 60 kilos arrancado, es bastante obvio qué lo causó“, concluyó.

El temor de los tiburones hacia las orcas, un caso de estudio

Según otro estudio que publicó Science Alert, un equipo de científicos marinos descubrió que los grandes tiburones blancos intentan esconderse siempre que sienten la presencia cercana de orcas.

“Cuando se enfrentan a las orcas, los tiburones blancos abandonan de manera inmediata su terreno de caza preferido y no regresan hasta por un año, aunque las orcas solo estén de paso”, dijo el biólogo Salvador Jorgensen, del Acuario de la Bahía de Monterrey.

Para llegar a esas conclusiones, los investigadores recopilaron datos de dos fuentes distintas: los recorridos de 165 tiburones blancos marcados con GPS, entre 2006 y 2013; y 27 años de datos de población de orcas, tiburones y focas recopilados por Point Blue Conservation Science en las costas de San Francisco, en Estados Unidos.

Towner afirmó que las orcas rasgaron la piel de los tiburones debajo de la aleta para poder acceder a los órganos internos del animal
Towner afirmó que las orcas rasgaron la piel de los tiburones debajo de la aleta para poder acceder a los órganos internos del animal Crédito: Twitter

En todos los casos de encuentros entre grandes tiburones blancos y orcas, el escualo fue el que escapó de forma rápida del lugar. Los científicos afirmaron que las orcas se alimentan de tiburones blancos en todo el mundo.

Y aunque todavía es un misterio por qué los tiburones, que llegan muertos a las playas, aparecen mordidos a la altura del hígado, los investigadores creen que la razón podría encontrarse en que ese órgano es rico en aceite y está lleno de vitaminas.

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