Animal Fats #7: Killer Whale/ Orca

16 days ago


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The killer whale is a toothed whale with a diverse diet. These animals are highly social that have sophisticated hunting techniques and vocal behaviors. These are often tied to a specific group and are passed across generations. Killer whales are able to live long lives, females average lifespan is 50 years while the males average lifespan is only 29 years. Captive killer whales are significantly shorter with the average being under 25 years but there have been a few whales who have survived until their 40s.

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Killer whales are apex predators, meaning that they have no natural predators. They have been called the wolves of the sea as they hunt in groups like wolf packs. There is a variety of what these whales eat, different populations tend to specialize. Diets range from small fish up to marine mammals. Fish eating orcas prey on about 30 species of fish, such as salmon, herring, chinook, and pink salmon. These fish eating beasts must eat a average of 227 kg (500 lb) per day. In New Zealand, killer whales have been documented to eat sharks and rays , such as eagle rays, hammerhead sharks, mako sharks, and tiger sharks. In July 1992, two killer whales attacked, killed and fed on a 8 m (26 ft) long whale shark in the waters of Baja California.

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While some killer whales feed on marine mammals, such as grey whales, blue whales, minke whales, seals, and sea lions. Hunting large whales takes several hours. A group of five or more may attack a healthy adult but they prefer preying upon the weak and sick. They chase their whale prey until the mother and its calf wears out. Eventually the killer whales separate the pair then surround them so it cant go up for air. So their whale prey will suffocate and die. The killer whale is a powerful beast that gives off a menacing beauty.

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This concludes today's day of animal facts. Every day I will try my best to make a post on a animal. Feel free to comment what animal to do for tomorrow and follow. Thanks for reading.

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