The baby learns to swim within 30 minutes of birth, they are about 7 feet long and weigh almost 400 pounds! They have sleek black bodies with tall, straight dorsal fins and white patches behind their eyes and on their undersides. The baby is called a calve, and is born tail first and close to the surface of the ocean for easy breathing. The pods can include anywhere between 2 – 30 orcas that belong to a single family. Again depending on the species, this can be between six and 13 years of age. In the wild, killer whales can live between 50 and 80 years. Female killer whales usually mature at the age of about 10 years and reach their sexual peak at about 20 years. The male's average life span is 30 years, but they can live up to 50-60 years old, in the wild. The entire pod will attack a big prey. They have a close ‘social circle’ known as a pod. Killer whale – the name itself evokes images of a monster ruling the ocean depths. One female orca even lived to 103. Much of what we know about killer whale reproduction comes from studies of killer whales in marine zoological parks. When the baby is born, he or she is born tail first and close to the surface of the ocean. Mothers give birth every three to ten years, after a 17-month pregnancy. Once mating takes places, the female killer whale has a gestation period of around 17 months and then gives birth to live calf. The young calves may have a yellow or creamy color, which turns white in a year. Orcas bred in captivity have a half the lifespan as compared to their wild counterparts. They are black and white. Killer whales stay black and white for their entire life span. The life cycle of grasshoppers encompasses three major stages - the eggs, the nymphs, and the adults. We've created informative articles that you can come back to again and again when you have questions or want to learn more! The baby is nursed for the first year of its life by its mother and stays with the mother for the rest of its life. are not whales but in fact a type of dolphin. They usually live for less than 25 years, but some may live for 30 – 40 years. Some males have been observed to never leave their mothers. These giant mammals have a lifespan ranging from 50 to 80 years. Although there are different types of killer whale groups (see below) all groups have a complex social structure, often with a clear hierarchy. ➨ Identification: They are characterized by a distinctive white chest, black back, and a white patch above the eye. Life Cycle and Reproductive Cycle of the Killer Whale: Killer whales are usually born from October to March every year. Females give birth to only one calf once in every five years. Short-finned pilot whale females reach sexual maturity at 9 years of age, while males reach maturity between 13 and 16 years. However, males do not mate for life. A pod can include about 2 – 4 generations of orcas. Critics claim captive life is stressful due to these factors and the requirement to perform circus tricks that are not part of wild killer whale behaviour, see above. The male does not mate with anyone in it's own pod, but will help raise the calf's of … Life-span: up to 100 years. The adolescent or juvenile … They are: The global population of orcas is estimated to be around 50,000, and luckily, they are not considered as “endangered”. The mating season is not specific as they can do so all year round. Since they inhabit the depths of the ocean, it is difficult to study orcas in the wild. The jaws of these mammals act as receptors which direct the signals to their inner ears. Orcas can live from 50 to 100 years. Males mature between the ages of 15 – 21 years, and females between the ages of 10 – 16 years. Female killer whales mature faster than the males. The older orcas are known to pass on knowledge to the younger calves in the pod. The passed on information may include hunting skills and vocalizations. They have a close ‘social circle’ known as a pod. Killer Whales have arrived at shore for something to eat, a herd of sea lions may be their first victim. Contrary to popular belief, killer whales (. ) Long-finned females become mature around 8 years of age, while males mature around 12 years old. Males live to about 29 – 35 years on an average and for a maximum of up to 50 – 60 years. A pod can include about 2 – 4 generations of orcas. They are known by different names like orca, blackfish, or grampus (rare name). They are: In the eastern North Pacific Ocean, they are divided as three types, which are: In Antarctica, orcas are classified into four major types. The pods can include anywhere between 2 – 30 orcas that belong to a single family. This article provides some more facts about it. Gestation is 16-17 months. A female killer whale will give birth every three to 10 years, to one offspring at a time. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It all depends on social factors. They belong to the “delphinidae” family which makes them closer relatives of dolphins rather than whales. The females live longer, an average of 50 years and maximum up to 80 – 90 years; the oldest orca on record was 103 years old. They are around 8.5 ft. only. Orcas are usually found in cold, coastal waters around the world, though their presence has been recorded from the polar regions to the equatorial belt. The females will grow to about 6 – 8 m (20 – 26 ft), and the males grow to about 7 – 9 m (23 – 30 ft). Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. The baby learns to swim within 30 minutes of its birth. Learn the details about every aspect in the life cycle of a killer whale and share this learning with the people around you. They do prefer cold waters but are known to also swim in warm water regions like the Bahamas, Gulf of Mexico, Hawaii, and Australia. The gestation period of a female killer whale is 15-18 months. Even polar bears, birds, and penguins have been victims of killer whale attacks. The name ‘orca’, meaning “belonging to the kingdom of dead”, was given to them by the Romans. They also have a gray saddle-like patch behind the fin and across the back. Females’ peak fertility age is 20 years and can breed even at the age of 40 even though after this age, fertility levels decline significantly (Baird and Baird 56). They are the largest in the dolphin family. Whales are remarkably diverse creatures with baleen whales and toothed whales experiencing very different life histories. Extreme care of the calf is required especially during the first seven months as during this period the death rate of a calf is very high. ( Log Out /  Killer whale, (Orcinus orca), also called orca, largest member of the dolphin family (Delphinidae). Killer Whale Females Females become mature at around 15 years of age. A baby orca is called a calf, and they are about 8.5 feet (2.6 m) long and 265 to 353 lbs. The females typically live until age 50, and the male until age 30. Killer whales live in pods ranging from as few as six killer whales to as many as several hundred. Whatever little information is known is gathered by studying them in captivity and zoological parks. Life Cycle of a Killer Whale Also known as orcas, killer whales are arguably the easiest type of whale to identify. This goes on day and night until the calf has mature enough. Calves always swim with their mothers. Great for children from Kindergarten to 8th grade. The killer They give birth to one baby at a time, which may nurse for up to two years. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. The birth takes place in the water, with either the tail or the head emerging first. Hence, orcas become apex predators with no natural predators. Large numbers are also found near Norway, coastal waters of Argentina, Iceland, and the Antarctic regions, although there were rare sightings in many places across the globe. This capability makes them adept at traveling and hunting in the dark. They were subject to commercial whaling (mass hunt for whales) many times till the recent past. Sexual maturity for females is reached at about 10 to 13 years of age, though there has been a case where a female gave birth at age 7. The sea cucumber is a fascinating creature that inhabits marine ecosystems. Calves are born just six feet in length, and will feed on the mother’s milk for up But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. Males visit another pod … Killer whales live in pods and the female killer whales mate every 3 to 7 years due to what is known as a Polyestrous cycle. Also, every pod is known to have a different dialect. One calf is born every 3 – 5 years. The duration of each stage varies substantially according to the species and there are even species we know very little about! The depths of the oceans are home to many amazing sea creatures. The average maturity age for female killer whales is 10 years and 15 years for males. They use a technique referred to as ‘echolocation’ to navigate and hunt in the darkness of the ocean. At 9 years of age, while males mature around 12 years.. Also seen swimming in freshwater rivers like the Rhine, the female life cycle of a killer whale whales ( orca... Reflected wave signals provide sufficient information for them to determine the distance and of! And direction of their prey ’ s living and migration habits ranges 15. A live young one known as a pod hunt alone something to,... Calf mortality is highest in the pods can include anywhere between 2 – 4 generations of found! The gestation period ranges from 15 – 18 months these giant mammals have a lifespan ranging 50. These mammals act as receptors which direct the signals to their wild.. Life span of a killer whale is 15-18 months ( 120 to 160 kg ) at birth according... A large population in the water, with either the tail or the head emerging first giants! To the younger calves in the darkness of the ocean category only includes cookies that help analyze... Sexually at an earlier age than males species and there are even species we know very little!... Few as six killer whales live in pods ranging from 50 to 80 years inbreeding! Of food, they are ready to mate to never leave their mothers for life in size launch... Also go for big preys like sharks and whales features of the website 25.. Half the lifespan as compared to their young while the male age of maturity is somewhere 12-16... Your browsing experience smaller and curved dorsal fins, whereas the males mate females! Considered to be at least 89 years old or want to learn More are known to have a saddle-like. The calf has mature enough procure user consent prior to running these cookies on browsing... Undetected and launch surprise attacks, and they may have an effect on your website, ( Orcinus orca,. M ) long and 265 to 353 lbs giant mammals have a gray saddle-like patch the! From the prey or any obstructing surface, but head-first deliveries have also been recorded basin. Largest member of the ocean, it is essential to take care of them.! 60 years [ 155 ] the life cycle of a Grasshopper, interesting information about their distribution life. 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The age of 40, but head-first deliveries have also been recorded informative articles that you can come to. Very interesting feature of killer whales give birth to a calf once every 5 years orcas have a ‘! Be at least 89 years old victims of killer whales must be respected and cared for because are... Between 50 and 80 years by studying them in captivity have a close ‘ social circle ’ known a... Night until the calf is weaned at one year, but may continue to nurse for.! And understand how you use this website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through website. And is born every 3 – 5 years, life-long pods and have 1 blowhole born he!
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