10 Interesting Facts About Killer Whales, or Orcas

Orca breaching

Killer Whale breaching photo by NOAA

With the documentary out about captive Killer Whales (referred below as Orcas) called “Blackfish,” I thought I would list 10 interesting facts about Orcas:

1. Orcas are found in all the world’s oceans.

2. Orcas are apex predators and lack any natural predators.

3. Most males never leave their mothers.

4. Orcas have culture since their hunting techniques and vocalizations are passed down generations.

5. Orcas generate 3 types of sounds: clicks, whistles, and pulsed calls.

6. Each pod has its own dialect of calls (that only they use).

7. Orcas and pilot whales are the only non-human species in which females undergo menopause (around age 40 years) and live decades after.

8. There may be up to 4 generations of Orcas in a traveling group.

9. Orcas have the 2nd heaviest brain among marine mammals (sperm whales have the heaviest brain)

10. A female Orca gives birth to 1 calf every five years, and she averages 5 calves per lifetime.

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10 Responses to 10 Interesting Facts About Killer Whales, or Orcas

  1. Ibrahim Saleh says:

    Good Facts

  2. orcas are awsome says:


  3. Elaina Moore says:

    This was a very interesting website! Thank you for the great facts. I will refer my friends to this site.

  4. Piper says:

    Great website! I will for sure recommend to someone else. Great facts will be referencing again.

  5. Jacob Owens says:

    The Killer whale is super fascinating.

  6. Abokaliya says:

    For school project. Helps alot, thanks!

  7. anonymous says:

    For assignment thanks, great facts, and help out with my assignment and my knowledge. Thanks a whole bunch!

  8. Maya says:

    Thank you! Great facts! I needed them for an assignment at school. I will recommend this website to my friends.

  9. Shannon says:

    This article made me want to know more! Can you recommend any books on orca whales or blue whales? I really enjoy how you explain marine life.

    • Cherilyn Jose says:

      My favorite book on Orcas is “Orca: The Whale Called Killer” by Erich Hoyt. “Death at Sea World: Shamu and the Dark Side of Killer Whales in Captivity” by David Kirby really opened up my eyes to the plight of captive cetaceans. I just read a cute children’s book called “The Blue Whale” by Jenni Desmond from the library. I also have an earlier post called “10 Cool Facts About Blue Whales.”

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