Ingrid Visser of the Orca Reasearch Trust, has spent twenty years studying and observing orcas in the wild.
And she was responsible for taking this highly detailed picture of Nakai’s wound:
Perhaps the most important detail in this picture is the puncture marks which appear on the lower right margin of the wound, opening up the possibility that Nakai’s wound was caused by a bite from another orca, and not a collision with some part of the pool, as SeaWorld has suggested.
Now Visser has sent me a more detailed analysis of Nakai’s wound. Here it is:
The recent wound on the captive orca Nakai remains an enigma as to how it occurred. When I first viewed (unreleased) photographs taken a week after the graphic injury, I was of the opinion that it was unlikely to have been inflicted by other orca, based on the fact that no orca teeth marks were clearly visible in the photos and the very ‘clean’ edges to the wound.
Regardless of the source of the wound, I didn’t buy the story from SeaWorld that Nakai had ‘come into contact with the pool’ (AP, Sept 28th 2012, press release), as to me such wording implied a light brush past, or perhaps at worst a bump into the side of the tank. Clearly such a striking wound wasn’t from a light brush or even a ‘bump’.