Shock follows 'Jaws' scare

By Chloe Johnson

A diver says he was shaking and in shock for days after being surprised by a pair of orca whales.

Last week the Herald on Sunday published a story about interplay between diver Johnny Eade, the whales and a dog. Since then, the online clip has been viewed by nearly 1.5 million people at YouTube and nzherald.co.nz.

Eade, 47, said he was spearfishing about 12m from the shore at Matheson Bay, north of Auckland, when he saw a large dark-grey fin swimming towards him.

The whale was about 20m away when Eade "bolted" towards the shoreline, he said.

He only just made it to a jagged rock before the whales - believed to be a mother and her calf - caught up with him.

"They reminded me of Russian nuclear submarines emerging from the depths," Eade said. "As you can imagine, I soiled my wetsuit. Even though they're orcas it's not like Seaworld, so you don't know them and you don't take your chances.

"It felt like the movie Jaws."

He climbed on to the rock and whipped off his goggles to see what was going on.

Eade said he sat on the rock in shock and shaking for about 10 minutes before the curious whales turned towards a black labrador.

The keen fisherman says he has since researched orca and is coming to terms with the once-in-a-lifetime experience.

"Now I need to do research on sharks in case that happens one day."

- Herald on Sunday

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