Marine Mammal Science & Conservation

Killer whale

Killer whale (Orcinus orca)

Group formation: Matrifocal groups (size 3-10)

Size: males 6-10m, females 5-8m, calf 2.2m

Weight: males 5-6tons, females 3-4tons, calf 180kg

Age: males 30 (60)yrs, females 50 (80-103)yrs

Sexual maturity: males 15-20 yrs, females 15 yrs

Physical maturity: males 20-25 yrs, females 15 yrs

Gestation: 16-17mths, birth every 3-4 yrs, menopause around 40yrs of age

Diet: Marine mammals mostly dolphins, manta rays

Distribution: Toothed whale, largest dolphin, distributed all over the world.

Raja Ampat: Orcas are distribution all along the coast, but low in numbers, can be seen solitary or in small groups.

Population: min. 50 000

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

Threats: whaling (Indonesia, Greenland), plastic pollution, man-made noise impacts (seismic surveys, military sonar), entanglement in fishing gear, over fishing, captivity.

Cooperation: Georgina Gemmell, Lead Administrator, Orca Project Sri Lanka
Orca Project Sri Lanka


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