A large toothed whale with distinctive black-and-white markings and a prominent dorsal fin. It lives in groups that cooperatively hunt fish, seals, and penguins. Also called killer whale.
- Orcinus orca, family Delphinidae
More example sentences
- Since 1976, whale expert Ken Balcomb has led what is perhaps the longest running study on killer whales, or orcas.
- If you look at dolphins, orcas, and blue whales, all fully aquatic animals, you would have a hard time imagining them walking on land.
- That forced orcas, or killer whales, which normally feed on seals and sea lions, to approach the coast and eat the sea otters.
mid 19th century: from French orque or Latin orca, denoting a kind of whale.