How can you describe the niche of orcas?

An ecological niche is a role or way of life that an organism takes within its habitat and how it adapts to meet its basic needs to survive and proliferate, through a set of conditions, resources, and interactions with others.

Two organisms can not have the same niche, as they would compete for the same resources, which would cause only the strongest to survive, leading its opponent to extinction. In nature, although there are some species whose niches overlap, they have different options that make them easier to satisfy their daily requirements.

In this sense, the niche of Orcas is quite variable. The extensive distribution of this species makes that its populations have different cultures that have evolved according to their environment. Some even think that new unidentified subspecies are wandering in the oceans right now.

The niche of these cetaceans differs more clearly in their diet. For example, North Pacific killer whales that live south of Alaska, Washington, and British Columbia and are known as residents rely on fish and squid. In contrast, orcas called transients and whose range of distribution overlaps with residents, but without interbreeding, have a diet that is based primarily on marine mammals.

The interesting thing about killer whales is that they are not limited by salinity, temperature or depth since they have the capacity to move through waters of different latitudes, the open sea or reach coastal areas with depths of only a few meters.

The five ecotypes of Antarctic killer whales and three of Pacific killer whales differ considerably in diet habits, habitat, behavior, and social structure. Therefore their niche entirely depends on the ecotype.

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