Orcas have attacked and sunk a third boat off the Iberian coast of Europe, and experts now believe the behavior is being copied by the rest of the population.
"There were two smaller and one larger orca," skipper Werner Schaufelberger told the German publication Yacht .
"The two little orcas observed the bigger one's technique and, with a slight run-up, they too slammed into the boat."
Spanish coast guards rescued the crew and towed the boat to Barbate, but it sank at the port entrance.
Orcas are social creatures that can easily learn and reproduce behaviors performed by others, according to the 2022 study.
In the majority of reported cases , orcas have made a beeline for a boat's rudder and either bitten, bent or broken it.
Orcas appear to perceive the behavior as advantageous, despite the risk they run by slamming into moving boat structures, López Fernandez added. »