Orcas attack adult gray whales

ORCAS

Except for humans, orcas have no enemies, nowhere, orcas are them Top predators of the world's oceans, they are at the top of the food chain. Worldwide. If the Arctic ice continues to recede and polar bears are forced to spend even more time in the water, orcas could become dangerous even to them, the largest and most powerful predators on land.

Orcas owe the name "killer whale" to the early whalers. Because they seemingly attacked and killed all other animals, even the largest whales. Even whalers were afraid of orcas. Actually wrongly, because to date, not a single attack on humans has been documented in the wild. Orcas only seem dangerous to humans if they have been locked up in an aquarium separately from their families for years.

Orcas live in stable families that stay together for a lifetime, children, grandchildren, grandparents, aunts. These families are called schools or pods. At times, several related schools come together and form large groups (clans) of up to 150 animals. These clans even develop their own dialects and hunting habitsthat can be used to clearly distinguish them from one another.

Individual clans seem to specialize in a certain type of prey - fish, seals, whales - other possible prey is then even ignored. Often several pods cooperate on the hunt, sometimes other whales join in for a short time, apparently without any fear. The hunting strategies of orcas are extremely variable:

In Norway and Iceland, orcas drive schools of herring into a large ballconstantly circling them or enclosing them with a wall of air bubbles. Then they stun individual fish with one blow of their fluke and pick them out.