Hawaiian Island Cetaceans

Killer Whale

Scientific Name - Orcinus orca

Average Length - Male: 8m, Female: 6.5

Photo Credit: © Robin W. Baird/Cascadia Research Collective

 

Killer Whales are a species of dolphin that is well known from productive waters found in temperate climates. The Hawaiian stock of killer whales is estimated to have an abundance of 101. These whales are known for diverse dietary preferences that are often specific to individual populations. Killer whales from different parts of the world have been reported to eat fish, squid, sea turtles, sharks, rays, and even other cetaceans. They are known to hunt cooperatively. Females reach sexual maturity and can have their first calf at approximately 15 years of age with a lifespan of 80-90 years. Pregnancy lasts almost a year and a half and calves then nurse for 1-2 years.  No life history information specific to the small Hawaiian stock of killer whales is known.

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