Killer Whale Facts
Below are some of the facts about Killer Whale:
- Killer whales are not actually whales. They belongs to the Dolphin family. They are actually dolphins of huge size, and actually the largest dolphins on earth. They are toothed sea animals and are also called Orca.
- Long ago the killer whale was called the Whale Killer. This name was given to it by sailors who saw them attacking other whales. Gradually the name got reversed to the current form today.
- The largest killer whale caught till date had a length of 32 feet and weight of 22000 pounds.
- Generally the killer whales have a length of 16 to 30 feet, and their weigh varies from 3 to 6 tons. The male whales are larger than the females.
- A juvenile whale at birth only weighs 400 pounds and measures 8 feet.
- The killer whale falls among one of the apex predators on earth and the oceans. It’s huge size and strength helps it hunt. In the ocean it is at the top of the food chain.
- Killer whales feed on a variety of animals in sea. This includes fishes, rays, sharks, other whales including the blue whale, sea birds, dugongs, squids, seals, crabs, sea lions, lobsters, sea turtles, penguins, baby blue whales and baby sperm whales, and also eats moose swimming in water and polar bears if they gets the chance.
- For a big success rate of hunting, killer whales always hunt in groups.
- In case of giant preys, they catch the prey and immobilizes it and this suffocates the prey to death. In case of sea lions, seal and penguins, they somehow drive the animals to water and then attacks. For sea birds they push themselves off to the shore to catch them.
- Killer whales always stay in groups. Their groups are called pods and is led by the most senior female. They are very social.
- A pod can contain whales from five generation together, starting from the babies to their great-great-grandmothers. A group may be formed of minimum 3 members to hundreds of members. Larger pods form clans and sub-pods.
- They hunt together, help each other, sleep and travel together, and when one member of the pod dies, others mourn the death. They communicate with each other.
- Killer whales sense prey through echolocation which uses their excellent sharp sense of hearing. They can hear better than bats and dogs but they cannot smell.
- They have the most complex communication system in the whole animal kingdom.