When you think of the top ocean predators you probably think of sharks. That’s wrong the true ruler of the sea is the killer whale. Surprisingly they’re not whales, they’re dolphins. It’s hard to believe that a cute animal like a dolphin is ruling the ocean right? Anyway, we’re going to explain this here.
Killer whales are apex predators which means they have no natural predators. They hunt in packs much like wolves. Which are also at the top of their food chain. Most often come across resident killer whales which feed predominantly on salmon, But we occasionally spot transient orcas. which eat everything from fish to seals to sharks and even other whales gluttonous thing.
If you have any doubt about the killer whale’s apex status. Consider these wildlife watchers off the coast of California. Witnessed an orca attacking a great white shark and orca won without any contest. Interactions between the two typically do not end well for the shark.In 1997 the first recorded interaction between a great white and orca was documented. Two orcas killed a great white shark and ate its liver.In 2017 five great whites washed ashore in south Africa with similar signs.
Orcas are highly intelligent animals and work in groups when they hunt their very presence. Even when brief, can have a huge impact
on the surrounding ecosystem. when the great white sharks flee and do not hunt in an area for up to a year the numbers of their prey do not decline as they normally would. which affects other areas of the ecosystem in turn it seems that orca whales can be considered the true apex predator of the ocean now.
Dolphins and whales are closely related. Orcas were given the name killer whale by ancient sailor’s observations of groups of orcas hunting and preying on larger whale species. They called orcas assassina bayenas or whale killer, which was eventually flipped around to the easier killer whale. Their Latin name or sinus orca Also reflects this observation of orcas feeding on large whales or sinus means of the kingdom of the dead. An orca refers to a kind of whale. we know that orcas are top predators, yes but not the vicious whale killer that the ancient mariners thought them to be.
If you could give orcas another name, What would you call them?