||Powerful build, with striking black and
white pattern and tall triangular or sickle shaped centrally placed dorsal fin (B142).
- Male: 4,000-5,000kg (B142)
- Female: 2,500-3,000 kg (B142)
- Male: 5.7-9.5m/20-30ft (D23)
- Female: 5.6-5.7m; male 9.4-9.5m (B142)
- Neonate: Length 208-220cm (B142).
- Body: powerful robust torpedo shape.
- Head: conical, beak indistinct. Conspicuous white oval
patch above/behind eye.
- Teeth: large, conical, ten to 13 pairs.
- Colour: Dorsal and flanks black, abdomen white extending
in a dorsal-pointing rounded lobe up the flanks. Underside of head and throat also white.
Behind dorsal fin, indistinct grey saddle over back, pointing cranially.
- Flippers: large, rounded, paddle-shaped, dark.
- Dorsal fin: centrally placed along back, in females and
immature animals sickle-shaped, in adult males tall (to 1.8m), erect, triangular and
sometimes tilted forwards. N.B. Dorsal fin of males twice as long
as that of females, and straight (D23)
- Tail: flukes have shallow median notch and concave
trailing edge. Dorsal black, ventral white.
- Fish (including Salmo, Clupea, Gadus, Scomber, Pleurogrammus, Hippoglossus,
Sardinella and Sardus spp.),
- Marine mammals (other cetaceans, and seals).
- Occasionally turtles, birds (e.g. auks, kittiwakes).
- Co-operative feeding behaviour noted (B142).
- Births probably mainly late autumn/winter (October to January).
- Gestation about 12 to 16 months.
- Lactation at least 12 months.
- Calving interval at least three years.
- Sexual maturity: males 15-16 years, females 8-10 years.
- Probably polygynous or promiscuous (B142).
- Swim mainly 14-22 km/hour, but up to 50km/hour (B142).
- Groups may be small (e.g. up to 8 individuals) or larger (80-100
- Matriarchal social system; mainly family units.
Organisations (UK Contacts):