Killer Whale Facts
- Name: Killer Whale
- Binomial Name: Orcinus orca
- Lifespan: Between 50 and 80 years (wild)
- Diet: Carnivorous
- Range: All Major Oceans
- Length: Between 16 and 26 feet
- Weight: Between 3.3 and 6.6 short tons
19 Killer Whale Facts for Kids
- A killer whale is a member of the Delphinidae (oceanic dolphin) family.
- The killer whale is the largest member of the Delphinidae family.
- The binomial name for a killer whale is Orcinus orca.
- An adult killer whale can live between 50 and 80 years in the wild.
- An adult male killer whale can reach between 20 and 26 feet in length.
- An adult male killer whale can weigh more than 13,200 pounds.
- An adult female killer whale can reach between 16 and 23 feet in length.
- An adult female killer whale can weigh between 6,600 and 8,800 pounds.
- Killer whales are carnivorous and considered an apex predator.
- Killer whales feed on fish, marine mammals and sometimes other smaller whales.
- A male killer whale is called a bull.
- A female killer whale is a called a cow.
- A young killer whale is called a calf.
- A group of killer whales is called a pod or an orca pod.
- Killer whale pods can have up to 40 individuals.
- Killer whales are sometimes called the wolves of the sea.
- Female killer whales give live birth to calves every three to ten years, with a gestation period of about 17 months.
- At birth, a killer whale calf can weigh as much as 350 pounds.
- The Blackfish film documentary showed the psychological damage that happens to killer whales in captivity.
Killer Whale Pictures
A photo of a pod of orcas (killer whales).
A photo of a killer whale breaching.
Credit: Naturaliste Charters
A photo of a killer whale and a calf.
Credit: Center for Whale Research
Additional Resources on Killer Whales
- Killer Whale (Orca) – Oceana – Explore more about killer whales (orcas) on the Oceana website.
- Killer Whale (Orca) – Marine Bio – Learn more about killer whales on the Marine Bio website.
- Killer Whale (Orca) – NOAA Fisheries – Discover more about killer whales on the NOAA Fisheries website.
- Killer Whale (Orca) – Wikipedia – Find more killer whale facts for kids on the Wikipedia website.