False Killer Whale
marine life of Namibia
Introduction: The false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) is a cetacean, being the 3rd largest member of the oceanic dolphin family (Delphinidae). The word false refers to its close appearance and shared characteristics with the more famous Orca killer whale, as they both attack and kill other cetaceans. It lives in temperate and tropical waters throughout the world and is often associated with offshore bottlenose dolphins.
They are also known to ride the bow-wave of vessels ground swells, and can be photographed leaping clear of the water. The Sedina Boat tour at Lüderitz would offer an opportunity to view the false killer whale. Sightings are fairly rare and not guaranteed and usually confined to water depths of over 1,000m, but they this species may come inshore onto the continental shelf.
School sizes average 16 in southern African waters. Most of the data gathered about the false killer whale has been collected by examining stranded mammals.
Distribution: Recorded around Lüderitz
Diet: Cephalopods, large fish and they have been reported chasing other dolphins. Studies suggest they have an oceanic feeding habit, diving deep in the day time to forage or to catch squid at night.
Colouring: A long, slender almost black body with a lighter tapered head.
Breeding: A summer breeder with young 1.6m at birth.
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