The False killer whale’s name is quite misleading.
Contrary to what its name implies, the false killer whale is actually a species of oceanic dolphin.
Does that make the false killer whale more or less dangerous?
Read on to find out if false killer whales are dangerous.
How Does a False Killer Whale Behave?
Unlike most sea creatures, the false killer whale is actually very sociable, embracing contact with other animals and even human beings rather than shying away.
False killer whales are designated as a “non-aggressive” species and have been known to associate with other dolphin species such as the bottlenose dolphin, the Pacific white-sided dolphin, the rough-toothed dolphin and a multitude of others.
These dolphins travel in massive pods as a highly socialized species, with sometimes up to as many as 500 in a pod at once!
False killer whales mostly consume fish, squid and other small sea animals, but are known to eat bigger fish including tuna and mahi-mahi, cementing their status as an active sea predator.
Overall, the false killer whale is very social, but also a pretty significant predator.
Do False Killer Whales Pose a Threat to Humans?
As mentioned above, the false killer whale preys on a number of different marine species, but what about their relationship with humans?
False killer whales are frequently caught by fishers and scientists, but they’re surprisingly resilient when it comes to captivity.
These dolphins can adapt to the condition of captivity, which separates them from many of their sea creature counterparts.
False killer whales commonly approach human boats and fishing lines, even offering up their food to people at sea in some cases!
This level of comfortability with humans is actually more dangerous to the false killer whale, though, as human fishing lines can often entangle these large dolphins and cause injuries or even drowning in extreme cases.
In addition, the false killer whale has also successfully bred while being held captive by human fishers, further attesting to the species’ resilience under hostile conditions.
The false killer whale may kill other animals, but they’re not too much of a problem for human beings on the whole.
Have False Killer Whales Ever Killed Humans?
False killer whales like to interact with humans, and even help them hunt at times.
There haven’t been any reported instances of false killer whales killing humans, though. This behavior just isn’t part of the dolphin’s psychological makeup, unlike those of sharks or other whales.
Despite being captured regularly, the false killer whale is not aggressive towards human beings.
Final Thoughts: Are False Killer Whales Dangerous?
In totality, false killer whales are only dangerous to their prey.
The false killer whale has an amicable relationship with its fellow species, as well as with the humans they interact with.
False killer whales have a pretty deceiving name, especially when considering they aren’t even a species of whale.
So despite what the name suggests, if you were to ever encounter a false killer whale, you would have nothing to fear!