Thursday, April 12, 2012

K is for Killer Whale

Since G was dedicated to great white shark, I thought it'd be appropriate to make K for killer whales.
                                                           

Also referred to as Orca, the Killer Whale, is considered one of the worlds most powerful predators. The name "Killer Whale" isn't derived from killing humans. Instead, it stems from the orca killing other whales.
                                                                      

These mammals are carnivores and hunt in deadly pods that use effective hunting techniques parallel to wolf packs. They use sound to communicate within their pod.  In my opinion, it would seem, the orcas living in the wild in the pods is key to their survival, not just physically, but mentally, too.

                                                     

Unlike great white sharks, killer whales are extremely protective of their young. In fact, other female adolescent whales assist the mother in taking care of her young. Mothers give birth every 3 to 10 years after a 17-month pregnancy. Holy cow! That's a LONG time to be preggers.

                                                                 

Killer whales breathe through a single blowhole on top of their head and hold their breath under water. The average orca eats 500 pounds of food a day and have up to 45 teeth, shaped for ripping bigger prey while they usually swallow smaller prey whole. Talk about a belly ache!

                                                               

Technically, killer whales are considered dolphins. They can grow up to 30 feet in length and weigh six to eight tons. Their size can be compared to a bus. In the wild, the average life span ranges 50 to 60 years for males and up to 90 years for females.

                                                                        



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24 comments:

  1. Interesting stuff! I just think of Free Willy every time Orca whales are mentioned! :)

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  2. Okay, these a beautiful shots. And seeing them live must be thrilling. :)

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    1. The photographers are lucky for sure!

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  3. I love Killer Whales... though I'd never want to swim with them. They are just fine from a distance. :)

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    1. From a distance is cool, to watch them in their own environment.

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  4. I feel really bad for the whales at Sea World. As much as I love seeing them perform, they've got such small aquariums to live in. Proportionally, my cat has more free roaming space in our house than they do--and I know more than anything he wants to go outside and explore further.

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    1. I agree, which is why I didn't use photos of them held in captivity.
      They tend to live longer in the wild than in some small tank away from their pods. It's so sad.

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  5. *shudder* my fear of whales just kicked in. Tho they are beautiful; I feel my lungs closing in just thinking about them.

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    1. Aw. I didn't know you had that fear. :(

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  6. wonderful info---they are so beautiful!

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  7. Classic! I liked all the photos - hope to one day see one in the wild.

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  8. These are some great photos. I really like your blog and this post.

    www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

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  9. Great photos---I love orcas.

    Hope you’re enjoying the challenge so far!
    --Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z
    #atozchallenge

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  10. Wow! Lots of stuff I didn't know. 17-month pregnancy? Ouch. They're very pretty, those whales.

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  11. wow I love this information. They are gorgeous creatures. I truly hope to see them in the wild one day, I have seen them in a water park, not the same :)

    Greetings from the A to Z trail,
    Sylvia @ Playful Creative

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    1. It would be awesome to see them in their environment.
      thanks for stopping by!

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Comments make me happy. So do photos of Adam Levine... <3