Killer whales, also known as Orcas, are the largest member of the dolphin family.
So how much do killer whales weigh?
Males are larger than females, weighing in at between 8,000 to 12,000 pounds (3,628 to 5,443 kg). There have been instances of males weighing as much as 22,000 pounds (9,979 kg).
Females weigh between 3,000 to 8,000 pounds (1,360 to 3,628 kg).
Newborn killer whale calves are large too, tipping the weighing scales at 300 to 400 pounds (136 to 181 kg).
Interesting Killer Whale Information:
These huge predators are immediately recognizable. This is due not only to their huge size, but their distinctive black and white coloring.
Large, fast, and fearsome, these carnivores are the ultimate predators. They are at the top of the food chain in the underwater environment they live in.
Sharks, whales, seals, squid, sea lions, and a range of other marine life are no match for these huge sea mammals.
To make matters worse for their prey, killer whales are intelligent hunters. They often hunt in packs, also known as ‘pods’, which is why they are often given the nickname the ‘wolves of the sea’.
Are Killer Whales Endangered?
Killer whales are not currently an endangered species.
However, there were concerns for killer whales in the twentieth century, when they were targeted by commercial fishing companies.
Do Killer Whales Eat Humans?
Just like humans, killer whales are very sociable. They do eat other mammals, but there have been very few instances where they have attacked humans.
In situations where this happens, it’s usually because of a misunderstanding; as in, a killer whale mistakes a human for another sea creature.
~ Fun Fact ~
You may not realize that killer whales are fast swimmers. They are known to swim as fast as 30 mph (48 kph) when necessary, in order to catch their prey. That’s as quick as a giraffe!