Animalia > Chordata > Mammalia > Cetacea > Delphinidae > Orcinus > Orcinus orca

Orcinus orca (Killer Whale; orca)

Synonyms: Delphinus gladiator; Delphinus orca; Orca ater; Orca capensis; Orca rectipinna; Orcinus glacialis; Orcinus nanus
Language: French; Spanish

Wikipedia Abstract

The killer whale (Orcinus orca), also referred to as the orca whale or orca, and less commonly as the blackfish or grampus, is a toothed whale belonging to the oceanic dolphin family, of which it is the largest member. Killer whales are found in all oceans, from Arctic and Antarctic regions to tropical seas. Killer whales have a diverse diet, although individual populations often specialize in particular types of prey.
View Wikipedia Record: Orcinus orca

EDGE Analysis

Uniqueness Scale: Similiar (0) 
 Unique (100)
Uniqueness & Vulnerability Scale: Not determined do to incomplete vulnerability data.
ED Score: 7.44


Adult Weight [2]  4.40 tons (3,987.50 kg)
Birth Weight [2]  396.83 lbs (180.00 kg)
Female Maturity [2]  10 years 4 months
Male Maturity [2]  13 years 6 months
Diet [1]  Carnivore
Gestation [2]  1 year 2 months
Litter Size [2]  1
Litters / Year [2]  0
Maximum Longevity [2]  90 years
Speed [3]  30.00 MPH (13.41 m/s)
Water Biome [1]  Pelagic, Coastal
Weaning [2]  1 year 3 months

Protected Areas

Name IUCN Category Area acres Location Species Website Climate Land Use
Alto Golfo de California y Delta del Rio Colorado Biosphere Reserve VI 2320468 Sonora, Mexico  
Archipelago de Colon Biosphere Reserve 34336011 Galapagos Islands, Ecuador  
Bañados del Este Wetland Reserve 986054 Uruguay  
California Coast Ranges Biosphere Reserve 153447 California, United States  
Cape Cod National Seashore II 21724 Massachusetts, United States
Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary   California, United States
Channel Islands National Park II 139010 California, United States
Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve 864738 British Columbia, Canada  
Croajingolong National Park II 217067 Victoria, Australia
Everglades and Dry Tortugas Biosphere Reserve   Florida, United States  
Farallon National Wildlife Refuge IV 352 California, United States
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary IV 2387149 Florida, United States
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve Ib 591068 Alaska, United States
Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve II 366714 British Columbia, Canada
Isla Mujeres, Punta Cancun y Punta Nizuc National Park II 21428 Quintana Roo, Mexico    
Kronotskiy Biosphere Reserve 361480 Russia  
Luce Bay and Sands 120487 Scotland, United Kingdom
Macquarie Island Nature Reserve Ia 233540 Tasmania, Australia  
Morecambe Bay 151985 England, United Kingdom
Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Reserve 293047 British Columbia, Canada  
North Bull Island Nature Reserve IV 3544 Ireland  
Ostrov Vrangelya (Wrangel Island) Zapovednik Nature Monument III 180 Russia    
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve II 137900 British Columbia, Canada
Palmer LTER Site Long Term Ecological Research   Antarctica    
Pembrokeshire Marine/ Sir Benfro Forol 341177 Wales, United Kingdom  
Point Reyes National Seashore II 27068 California, United States
Redwood National Park II 77867 California, United States
Reserva de la Biosfera El Vizcaino Biosphere Reserve VI 6176727 Mexico  
Sanday 27112 Scotland, United Kingdom    
Sirmilik National Park II 5475284 Canada
Solway Firth 107829 England/Scotland, United Kingdom
Tsitsikamma National Park II 34343 Southern Cape, South Africa  


Prey / Diet

Alle alle (Little Auk)[4]
Anarhichas lupus (Wolffish)[4]
Anoplopoma fimbria (Skil)[4]
Aptenodytes forsteri (Emperor Penguin)[5]
Aptenodytes patagonicus (King Penguin)[1]
Arctocephalus australis (South American Fur Seal)[4]
Arctocephalus philippii (Juan Fernández Fur Seal)[4]
Arctocephalus townsendi (Guadalupe Fur Seal)[6]
Arctocephalus tropicalis (Subantarctic Fur Seal)[4]
Balaena mysticetus (bowhead whale)[4]
Balaenoptera acutorostrata (Minke Whale)[7]
Boreogadus saida (Polar cod)[4]
Brachyramphus marmoratus (Marbled Murrelet)[4]
Branta bernicla nigricans (Lawrence's brant goose)[7]
Callorhinus ursinus (Northern Fur Seal)[7]
Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos (Blacktail reef shark)[4]
Clupea harengus (Yawling)[4]
Clupea pallasii (Pacific herring)[4]
Delphinapterus leucas (Beluga)[8]
Dermochelys coriacea (Leatherback Sea Turtle)[7]
Dissostichus mawsoni (Antarctic blenny)[9]
Doryteuthis pleii (arrow squid)[10]
Doryteuthis sanpaulensis[10]
Eleginus gracilis (Wachna cod)[4]
Enhydra lutris (Sea Otter)[4]
Erignathus barbatus (Bearded Seal)[7]
Eschrichtius robustus (Gray Whale)[4]
Eubalaena glacialis (Northern Right Whale)[4]
Eudyptes chrysolophus (Macaroni Penguin)[1]
Eumetopias jubatus (Steller Sea Lion)[7]
Fulmarus glacialis (Northern Fulmar)[4]
Gadus chalcogrammus (Whiting)[4]
Gadus macrocephalus (Pacific cod)[4]
Gadus morhua (rock cod)[4]
Gadus ogac (White sea nonmigratory cod)[4]
Glyptocephalus zachirus (Witch)[4]
Gonatus fabricii (boreoatlantic armhook squid)[4]
Hippoglossoides elassodon (Paper sole)[4]
Hippoglossoides platessoides (American dab)[4]
Hippoglossus stenolepis (Pacific halibut)[4]
Homo sapiens (man)[4]
Hydrurga leptonyx (Leopard seal)[4]
Hyperoglyphe antarctica (Trevalla)[4]
Istiompax indica (Marlin)[4]
Istiophorus platypterus (Atlantic sailfish)[4]
Lagenorhynchus cruciger (Hourglass Dolphin)[4]
Lepidopsetta bilineata (Rock sole)[4]
Leptocottus armatus (Cabezon)[4]
Limanda limanda (Sand dab)[4]
Lobodon carcinophaga (Crabeater Seal)[5]
Lontra felina (Marine Otter)[11]
Makaira mazara (black spearfish)[4]
Mallotus villosus (Capelin)[12]
Manta birostris (Skeete)[4]
Megaptera novaeangliae (Humpback Whale)[4]
Melanitta fusca (White-winged Scoter)[4]
Melanitta perspicillata (Surf Scoter)[4]
Merluccius productus (Whiting)[13]
Mesoplodon europaeus (Gervais's Beaked Whale)[4]
Mesoplodon layardii (Strap-toothed Whale)[4]
Microstomus pacificus (Slippery sole)[4]
Mirounga angustirostris (Northern Elephant Seal)[7]
Mola mola (Sun-fish)[4]
Monodon monoceros (Narwhal)[4]
Neophocaena phocaenoides (Finless Porpoise)[14]
Neotrygon kuhlii (Kuhl's stingray)[4]
Ocythoe tuberculata (Tuberculate Pelagic Octopus)[10]
Odobenus rosmarus (Walrus)[7]
Odobenus rosmarus divergens (Pacific walrus)[15]
Ommastrephes bartramii (red flying squid)[10]
Oncorhynchus gorbuscha (humpbacked salmon)[4]
Oncorhynchus keta (Calico salmon)[4]
Oncorhynchus kisutch (coho salmon or silver salmon)[7]
Oncorhynchus mykiss (redband trout)[7]
Oncorhynchus nerka (sockeye salmon or kokanee)[7]
Oncorhynchus tshawytscha (chinook salmon or king salmon)[7]
Onykia robsoni (Rugose Hooked Squid)[10]
Ophiodon elongatus (Lingcod)[4]
Ornithoteuthis antillarum (Atlantic bird squid)[10]
Pagophilus groenlandicus (Harp Seal)[4]
Parophrys vetulus (English sole)[4]
Phoca largha (Spotted Seal)[4]
Phoca vitulina (Harbor Seal)[15]
Phocoena phocoena (Harbor Porpoise)[7]
Phocoenoides dalli (Dall's Porpoise)[7]
Pholis gunnellus (Tissy)[4]
Pleurogrammus monopterygius (Atka mackerel)[4]
Pleuronectes platessa (European plaice)[4]
Pollachius virens (Sillock)[4]
Pusa hispida (Ringed Seal)[4]
Pygoscelis adeliae (Adelie Penguin)[5]
Pygoscelis antarcticus (Chinstrap Penguin)[4]
Pygoscelis papua (Gentoo Penguin)[4]
Rhincodon typus (Whale-shark)[4]
Salvelinus alpinus (Arctic charr)[4]
Scomber scombrus (Split)[4]
Sebastes maliger (Rockfish)[4]
Sebastes ruberrimus (Yelloweye rockfish)[4]
Sphyrna lewini (Southern hammerhead shark)[4]
Stenella attenuata (Pantropical Spotted Dolphin)[16]
Stenella frontalis (Atlantic Spotted Dolphin)[17]
Stenella longirostris (Spinner Dolphin)[4]
Thunnus albacares (Yellowfin-tuna)[4]
Thunnus thynnus (horse mackerel)[4]
Uria aalge (Common Murre)[4]
Xiphias gladius (Swordfish)[4]
Zalophus californianus (California Sealion)[7]
Ziphius cavirostris (Cuvier's Beaked Whale)[4]

Prey / Diet Overlap

Competing SpeciesCommon Prey Count
Arctocephalus gazella (Antarctic Fur Seal)2
Arctocephalus tropicalis (Subantarctic Fur Seal)5
Callorhinus ursinus (Northern Fur Seal)5
Carcharhinus signatus (Shark)2
Carcharodon carcharias (Maneater shark)2
Cerorhinca monocerata (Rhinoceros Auklet)2
Feresa attenuata (Pygmy Killer Whale)3
Hydrurga leptonyx (Leopard seal)4
Isistius brasiliensis (Smooth cookiecutter shark)2
Kogia breviceps (Pygmy Sperm Whale)2
Kogia sima (Dwarf Sperm Whale)2
Lagenorhynchus obliquidens (Pacific White-sided Dolphin)2
Lamna ditropis (Salmon shark)3
Megaptera novaeangliae (Humpback Whale)2
Physeter macrocephalus (Sperm Whale)2
Pontoporia blainvillei (Franciscana)2
Pseudorca crassidens (False Killer Whale)2
Somniosus microcephalus (gray shark)2
Thunnus alalunga (longfinned albacore)3
Thunnus thynnus (horse mackerel)2
Ursus maritimus (Polar Bear)4
Xiphias gladius (Swordfish)2


Homo sapiens (man)[4]


Parasitized by 
Anisakis pacificus <Unverified Name>[18]
Anisakis simplex[18]
Bolbosoma capitatum[18]
Bolbosoma nipponicum[18]
Diphyllobothrium orcini[18]
Diphyllobothrium polyrugosum[18]
Fasciola skrjabini <Unverified Name>[18]
Hadwenius subtilis[18]
Monorygma grimaldii[18]
Odhneriella subtila <Unverified Name>[18]
Orthosplanchnus albamarinus <Unverified Name>[18]
Oschmarinella albamarina[18]
Phyllobothrium delphini[18]
Trigonocotyle spasskyi <Unverified Name>[18]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Institution Infraspecies / Breed 
Kamogawa Sea World

Range Map

Antarctica/Southern Ocean; Croajingolong; East Pacific; Eastern Atlantic Ocean; Indo-West Pacific; Western Atlantic Ocean;


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Attributes / relations provided by 1Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at 2de Magalhaes, J. P., and Costa, J. (2009) A database of vertebrate longevity records and their relation to other life-history traits. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 22(8):1770-1774 3Wikipedia licensed under a Creative Commons License 4Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics. 5Who's Eating Who 6Arctocephalus townsendi, Rebecca L. Belcher and Thomas E. Lee, Jr., MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 700, pp. 1–5 (2002) 7Food Web Relationships of Northern Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca : a Synthesis of the Available Knowledge, Charles A. Simenstad, Bruce S. Miller, Carl F. Nyblade, Kathleen Thornburgh, and Lewis J. Bledsoe, EPA-600 7-29-259 September 1979 8Delphinapterus leucas, Barbara E. Stewart and Robert E. A. Stewart, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 336, pp. 1-8 (1989) 9The role of notothenioid fish in the food web of the Ross Sea shelf waters: a review, M. La Mesa, J. T. Eastman, M. Vacchi, Polar Biol (2004) 27: 321–338 10CephBase - Cephalopod (Octopus, Squid, Cuttlefish and Nautilus) Database 11Lontra felina, Serge Larivière, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 575, pp. 1-5 (1998) 12The role of capelin (Mallotus villosus) in the foodweb of the Barents Sea, A. V. Dolgov, ICES Journal of Marine Science, 59: 1034–1045. 2002 13Trophic Role of the Pacific Whiting, Merluccius productus, P. A. LIVINGSTON and K. M. BAILEY, Marine Fisheries Review 47(2), 1985, p. 16-22 14Neophocaena phocaenoides, Thomas A. Jefferson and Samuel K. Hung, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 746, pp. 1–12 (2004) 15Alaska Wildlife Notebook Series, Alaska Department of Fish and Game 16Stenella attenuata, William F. Perrin, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 683, pp. 1–8 (2001) 17Stenella frontalis, William F. Perrin, MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 702, pp. 1–6 (2002) 18Gibson, D. I., Bray, R. A., & Harris, E. A. (Compilers) (2005). Host-Parasite Database of the Natural History Museum, London
Protected Areas provided by Biological Inventories of the World's Protected Areas in cooperation between the Information Center for the Environment at the University of California, Davis and numerous collaborators. Natura 2000, UK data: © Crown copyright and database right [2010] All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100017955 GBIF Global Biodiversity Information Facility
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