False Killer Whales & Bottlenose Dolphins: The mixed sub-groups of two species: Off the coast of New Zealand, ufabet false killer whales have thrown up another big surprise for watching scientists.
Bad Reputation of The False Killer Whale
False killers are actually large dolphins, and they have a bad reputation because, like their namesakes, they sometimes harass other cetaceans. Pods have been known to attack smaller dolphin species and there is one report of them killing a humpback whale calf.
Even giant sperm whales are not immune. The false killers worry them until they regurgitate their hard-earned deep-sea squid, so the prospect of an encounter between false killers and bottlenose dolphins with calves is potentially explosive.
The dolphins are travelling near North Island, the false killers not far behind. The larger cetaceans had split into two groups and spent some time apart in the ufabet open ocean, but now they have rejoined into a formidable force, about 150 strong.
The bottlenose dolphins chatter to each other, mothers reassuring their calves with sequences of clicks, whistles and whines, while the calves answer back, but the false killers have eavesdropped on their intimate conversations from as far away as 30 kilometres and have locked on.
The pursuers increase their speed, powering along at a steady 10 knots.
The mixed sub-groups of two species
The gap closes and suddenly they are on them… then something quite extraordinary happens.
The false killers and the bottlenose dolphins intermingle, touching and greeting each other like old friends. Incredibly, the bottlenose dolphins appear to adjust their calls when they are with the false killers off New Zealand, raising the tantalising possibility that they may be able to communicate with each other across the species boundary.
Individual animals seem able to recognise each other, and may even form long-lasting relationships, and, as they mill about, they begin to organise themselves, ready to go hunting. The two species form into smaller ufabet mixed sub-groups, like best friends getting together, and these groups can spread across several kilometres of ocean.
Together they go in search of shoals of large fish. This is their strategy for success. By forming this unusual alliance and casting their net wider, they become far more effective at finding and catching prey that is distributed unevenly in the ocean, and competition is not a problem because there is plenty for all.
And, when the hunting is over, it’s time to rest. The false killer whales form a tightknit resting group, so the bottlenose dolphins must mill about on the periphery.
False killers are one of the least studied cetaceans. They live in the warmer parts of the open ocean, where they might travel up to 200 kilometres in a day, but sometimes come inshore like the New Zealand groups.
They reach a grand old age of 60 or more years, as long as they avoid getting tangled in fishing gear.