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Killer whales of Sea Lion Island

Behaviour

Killer whales have a complex general, social, and hunting behaviour. They use many different behavioural modules and action patters. There is no established killer whale ethogram (= description of the behavioural repertoire). Therefore, one of our first goals was to describe the ethogram of Sea Lion Island killer whales. The following is a sample of the the behaviours that we observed.

Patrolling

Patrolling, very close to the coastline (flat rocks).

 

Tossing

Tossing of a weaned elephant seal pup during a predation attempt.

 

Sinking

Sinking of a weaned elephant seal pup during a predation attempt.

 

Tail slapping

Tail slapping by a large adult male.