Killer Whale attacking a group of sharks.

Fred Sherman

Well-known member
Although its not common behavior, its not unusual for dolphins to attack sharks. The Orca is, after all, the largest member of the dolphin family, not a whale.


Well-known member
I've heard stories of dolphins even attacking sharks to protect humans, seen videos also how they head-butt them to kill sharks.


Well-known member
The Orca is, after all, the largest member of the dolphin family, not a whale.
The killer whale (Orcinus orca), commonly referred to as the orca, and less commonly as the blackfish, is a toothed whale belonging to the oceanic dolphin family. Killer whales are found in all oceans, from the frigid Arctic and Antarctic regions to tropical seas. Killer whales as a species have a diverse diet, although individual populations often specialize in particular types of prey. Some feed exclusively on fish, while others hunt marine mammals such as sea lions, seals, walruses and even large whales. Killer whales are regarded as apex predators, lacking natural predators and preying on even large sharks.

The toothed whales (systematic name Odontoceti) form a suborder of the cetaceans, including sperm whales, beaked whales, dolphins, and others. As the name suggests, the suborder is characterized by the presence of teeth rather than the baleen of other whales.


Fred Sherman

Well-known member
You're making a bit of a mistake. Odontoceti is Latin for "toothed whale", just as Dinosauria is Latin for "terrible lizard". However, dolphins are not whales, nor are dinosaurs lizards. Dolphins are as distinct from whales as they are from porpoises, even though all are members of the suborder Odontoceti.

The key to differentiation is the ability to hybridize. All dolphins can hybridize. Its rare, both in the wild and captivity, but it does happen. Dolphins cannot mate with whales or porpoises.

Does the media get it wrong? Of course:

A False Killer Whale is, you guessed it, a dolphin. As is always the case through the entire catalog of Terran lifeforms, two species can only interbreed/hybridize if they are in the same genus. Dolphins, whales and porpoises are all from different families - translations of taxological names aside.