Pseudorca Crassidens, commonly known as the False Killer Whale, are gregarious creatures that can be encountered all over the globe in vast, remote regions of tropical as well as subtropical oceans. The term “False Killer Whale” refers to a species of whale that resembles Orcas, also known as Killer Whales.

Between its initial discovery in the form of a skull in 1846 all the way to 1862, it was highly debated in terms of anatomy and classification before a verdict was reached, and the name stuck. All in all, the False Killer Whale is technically a dolphin, as referenced by its scientific name


The animal’s name refers to its resemblance to the killer whale orca. As a result, the False Killer Whale’s cranium resembles that of the Killer Whale in regards to dimensions, structure, and quantity of canines. Essentially a dolphin, the False Killer Whale isn’t an actual whale. The creatures have a pale speck on both their fins on their torso. A few other specimens also have spots of light gray hair on their temples. 

The false killer whale has a slender body, dark grey skin, and a pointed snout
The false killer whale has a slender body, dark grey skin, and a pointed snout

Nevertheless, the majority of their anatomy is either grayish or dark in appearance. Even as measurements could indeed differ globally, the False Killer Whale grows to a threshold length of 20 feet and weighs somewhere around 1.3 and 1.5 tons.


False Killer Whales are sociable predators with close-knit social circles. They frequently exist in relatively modest clusters of one to a few specimens that are part of a broader conglomeration that has the potential to disperse. Numerous members have a tendency to congregate when they catch prey, and their predation species may be distributed between a majority of members in the collective. 

In consideration of predatory species and quantity, nutrition seems to be broad. In addition to a range of fish and cephalopods, they have also been observed in the eastern tropical Pacific eating lesser delphinids which have been discharged from tuna catching nets.


False Killer Whales are found in tropical and subtropical seas of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Though it typically lives in the open ocean, the animal has been spotted rarely near coastal habitats like Hawaii. The False Killer Whale has also been spotted in partially confined regions, like the Aegean. In general, distant tropical to subtropical seas that really are deeper than 3,300 ft is particularly favored by False Killer Whales. 

False Killer Whales are known to inhabit areas with steep underwater topography, such as seamounts and canyons
False Killer Whales are known to inhabit areas with steep underwater topography, such as seamounts and canyons

As a testament to their aquatic abilities, they can plunge down to depths between 980 and 1,640 ft for approximately 18 minutes while swimming rapidly to catch prey. Their presence in an area is known by the fact that they will leap out of the water and throw food to the surface before consuming it. 


Optimal mating seasons for False Killer Whales would be from January through December and also in March. However, mating occurs year around long. The length of gestation ranges between 11 – 16 months. After conceiving a single calf, females go roughly 6.9 years without having another one. The newborn calf can’t swim right away. The young are progressively nursed over the course of 1.5 – 2 years. 

The young frequently stick with their mother’s herd until after nursing. Males of this species reach sexual maturity between the ages of 8 – 10, while females do so between the ages of 8 – 11 and engage in promiscuous sexual engagements.


In terms of natural predators, the False Killer Whale doesn’t have one. Presently, the variety and quantity of prey animals consumed by False Killer Whales are drastically declining on a worldwide scale. On the opposite side, long-lasting organic pollutants pose a danger to the animal since they build up to dangerous amounts and put animals susceptible to infections. 

False Killer Whales exhibit playful behaviors, such as leaping and flipping out of the water
False Killer Whales exhibit playful behaviors, such as leaping and flipping out of the water

The fishing industry also poses a severe threat to these creatures since False Killer Whales occasionally steal lures or captured fish from fishing lines, leading to retaliation extermination.

Facts about the False Killer Whale

  1. The nighttime hunting of False Killer Whales involves sharing fish with other members of the species.
  2. False Killer Whale females can live up to 63 years, while males can only live up to 58.
  3. A False Killer Whale can consume upwards to 5% average of its body mass in nourishment.
  4. False Killer Whales can swim to a speed of 18 mph.
  5. The scientific designation Crassidens is a reference to the False Killer Whales’ distinct teeth.
  6. False Killer Whales are known for their unique behavior of sharing food among group members, even if they are not closely related


Are False Killer Whales friendly to humans?

False Killer Whales enjoy interacting with people and might even assist them in their hunting. Yet, there have been no confirmed cases of False Killer Whales attacking people. Unlike sharks or dolphins, they simply do not exhibit this tendency as part of their behavior.

What to expect when encountering a False Killer Whale?

They are the easiest to encounter during their feeding time, which is apparent due to the fact that False Killer Whales throw the food on the surface before gulping it. They are quite friendly towards divers and, in some instances, will exhibit prosocial behavior towards humans by offering some of their food.

Do False Killer Whales eat dolphins?

False Killer Whales typically consume fish and cephalopods, but they occasionally target lesser dolphins or maybe even humpback and sperm whales. Researchers are uncertain if they actually eat these creatures as prey or simply attack them to eliminate interspecies rivalry for food.

What is faster, the False Killer Whale or the great white shark?

Overall hunting abilities of the False Killer Whale and great whites depend heavily on speed; however, it is reasonable to conclude that the great white shark is faster, at a swimming speed of 35mph to the 18-23 mph speed of the False Killer Whale.

Pseudorca Crassidens

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