It’s not often that orca whales visit the Danish coast although there have been sightings of other species of marine mammals in the area. The Danish waters are rarely part of the killer whale’s route.
But just recently, an orca was found dead on a Jutland beach. The whale measuring 5.5 meters long was found at Norlev beach in the northern part of Jutland.
It wasn’t clear what caused the death of the huge marine specie but according to witnesses, there was blood surrounding the whale. A biologist from the Forest and Nature Agency who checked the mammal said the orca whale was already old and had been lifeless for a long time.
Biologist Bjarke Huus found the incident strange because whales of this kind rarely pass by the Danish coast. He pointed out, though, that a minke whale got stranded in 1999 at an area near the place where the dead killer whale was discovered.
Orca is the biggest member of the dolphin family and is popularly known for its black back, white chest and sides as well as white patch above and behind its eyes. Most orcas live in the oceans both in the cold regions of the Arctic and Antarctic (70,000 to 180,000 based on studies) and while some are in the tropical seas. Orcas usually feed on all types of fish but some may also hunt for seals, sea lions, walruses and even other big whales.
Female orcas normally reach their age of maturity at 15 years during which they can already breed. Females have an average life span of 50 although some may live up to 70 to 80 years of age.
The male orcas, on the other hand, are capable of reproducing only at age 21 and can live an average of 30 years. In rare cases, they can live up to 50 to 60 years old.