Killer Whale

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Killer Whale
Introduction
The killer whale (Orcinus orca), also referred to as the orca whale or orca, and less commonly as the blackfish, is a toothed whale belonging to the oceanic dolphin family. Killer whales are found in all oceans, from the frigid Arctic and Antarctic regions to tropical seas. Killer whales as a species have a diverse diet, although individual populations often specialize in particular types of prey. Some feed exclusively on fish, while others hunt marine mammals such as sea lions, seals, walruses, and even large whales. Killer whales are regarded as apex predators, lacking natural predators.

Populations

* Resident: These are the most commonly sighted of the three populations in the coastal waters of the northeast Pacific. Residents' diets consist primarily of fish and sometimes squid and they live in complex and cohesive family groups called pods.

* Transient: The diets of these whales consist almost exclusively of marine mammals. Transients generally travel in small groups, usually of two to six animals, and have less persistent family bonds than residents. Transients vocalize in less variable and less complex dialects. Female transients are characterized by more triangular and pointed dorsal fins than those of residents. The gray or white area around the dorsal fin, known as the "saddle patch", often contains some black colouring in residents.

* Offshore: A third population of killer whales in the northeast Pacific was discovered in 1988, when a humpback whale researcher observed them in open water. As their name suggests, they travel far from shore and feed primarily on schooling fish. Offshores appear to be smaller than the others, and females are characterized bydorsal fin tips that are continuously rounded.

Types of Killer Whales
* Type A looks like a "typical" killer whale, a large, black and white form with a medium-sized white eye patch, living in open water and feeding mostly onminke whales....
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