Marine Mammal Science & Conservation

False killer whale

False killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens)

Group formation: Social groups 20-30 (over 100)

Size: males 6 m, females 5 m, calf 2 m

Weight: males 2200 kg, females 1200 kg, calf unknown

Age: 63 yrs

Sexual maturity: 12 yrs

Gestation: 14-16mths, with 7 yrs in between

Weaning: 1.5-2.5 yrs

Diet: mostly fish (e.g. tuna, sailfish) and squid (cephalopods), but do attack small cetaceans, humpback whales, and sperm whales.

Distribution: Oceanic dolphin family (Delphinidae) that lives in tropical and semitropical oceanic deep (>1000m) waters throughout the world. Common habitat is the open ocean, but they travel through more coastal areas as well.

Raja Ampat: they have been sighted regularly but nothing is known about them.

Population size: ca. 60.000, eastern tropical Pacific 39.800.

Conservation Status: Data Deficient ver 3.1, Pop. trend: unknown

Threats: Whaling (Japan, Indonesia, West Indies), chemical and plastic pollution, man-made noise impacts (seismic surveys, military sonar), entanglement in fishing gear, over fishing, captivity.


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