A northern Canada community is seeking help in freeing about a dozen killer whales - or Orcas - trapped under a vast stretch of sea ice in the eastern Hudson Bay.
Locals in the village of Inukjuak in the Canadian province of Quebec say the mammals have gathered around a single hole in the ice, slightly bigger than a pickup truck, in a desperate bid to get oxygen.
Mayor Peter Inukpuk urged the Canadian government on Wednesday to send an icebreaker as soon as possible to crack open the ice and help them find open water.
The French news agency AFP reports the Canadian government is sending a team of experts Thursday to investigate whether and how the whales can be saved.
A hunter first spotted the pod of about a dozen trapped whales at the hole on Tuesday.
Dozens of villagers have made the one-hour snowmobile ride to see the unusual spectacle.
Inukpuk believes the recent sudden drop in temperature caught the Orcas off guard, leaving them boxed in under the ice.