When hearing the name killer whale, we often associate them entertainment, such as attractions and movies, and we also tend to associate them with whales. The killer whales, also known as orcas, are actually more related to dolphins than they are to whales, since they are in the same family as dolphins. Since not a lot of people know much at the killer whale, we wanted to give some information; after all, they are in the same family as dolphins.


Killer Whales get the name “Killer” because they are the top of their food chain in the water. No animal, besides humans, hunts the killer whale, and everything else is its prey. Orcas are known to feed on anything from fish to squid, octopuses, sharks, sea turtles, and even seabirds. They also eat sea mammals too, like seals and dugongs. There has even been a report that killer whales have eaten moose. Sometimes orcas will even go through the effort of beaching themselves just to catch some mammals that go on land, like seals. Although massively sized, the orca can even jump out of water momentarily to catch birds. The orca like to hunt in a pack, in which they often surround their prey. The massive four inch teeth that orcas can grow make them ready for any prey they are looking for.


The appearance of the orca is much like other sea creatures. While some fish look like they could appear bigger if you looked at the back as their front (as a camouflage to appear much bigger to other fish), the orca has coloration on its side as its appearance perk. The orca has a light colored underside and dark colored topside to appear almost invisible to other sea creatures when looking at it. Being above the orca, you see a dark topside among a dark ocean depth. Being undernathe, you see a light underside amongst a light surface. This coloration makes the killer whale an apt hunter in the sea.


Orcas are known for their long dorsal fin on their back. They can grow up to six tons in weight and over 30 feet in length. They are the most widely distributed mammals in the world, aside from humans, and can adapt really well to almost any climate. Because of this adaptation, Killer Whales can be found near any coastal countries, anywhere between the Arctic and Antarctic circles. Although they are widely distributed throughout the world, they rarely stay in one place and make long travels around the world.


We hoped you enjoyed reading about the Killer Whale. To see the Atlantic Bottlenose dolphin in person in the wild, book an original dolphin cruise with Southern Star Dolphin Cruise today!