“Iceberg” is the only completely white (albino) killer whale known to exist.
He rarely raises his distinctive dorsal fin above the surface of the water for the eyes of mankind.
His latest appearance, however, was off the coast of Russia as he made his way down the far eastern coastline with his pod.
Iceberg was not even on the radar of scientists until he was fully mature and traveling with 13 of his relatives in 2010.
At that time he was spending his time in the Commander Islands.
His pod now seems to consist of around 60 other killer whales.
A pod is the name for the basic social structure used by the orca whale, the scientific designation of this beast.
Technically, the killer whale is a member of the dolphin family, and they can be found in oceans throughout the world, as their habitat is rarely limited by the temperature of the oceans.
They can be found hunting and living in the frigid waters of Antarctica or the tropical waters of the Caribbean.
Iceberg is a lone albino whale who seems to display all the normal habits that we would attribute to any killer whale.
Iceberg is part of a matrilineal family that is extremely stable throughout the killer whales lifetime, and like most killer whales Iceberg is very social and well-adjusted.
Because of the pods extremely close social behavior they can often be found hunting together and using team oriented strategies to isolate and capture their prey.
The diet of a killer whale is extremely diverse, allowing them to survive in many different habitats across the globe.
Their aggressive hunting style and carnivorous menu are what have earned this large dolphin the nickname of the “killer whale.”
While these species will eat any of the above creatures, specific pods will specialize in hunting particular food sources based on the region that they tend to inhabit.
Within the orca whale population, it is possible to further break them down into subspecies that display disjunctive coloration and stay in particular bodies of water.
Despite the current designations of type A through type D, Iceberg qualifies as a type all his own.
His habits are rarely documented, and his lack of distinctive markings make the traditional designations more of a challenge.
Although, documentation up to this point indicates that he is likely to fall under the category of Resident orcas.
Orcas groups are often labeled as Resident orcas, Transient orcas, or Offshore orcas.
Resident Orcas are most commonly seen by people.
They tend to inhabit the waters of the north Pacific, living primarily off of fish caught in open waters.
They travel together in family units that vary in complexity as offspring are born and mature.
Transient orcas are much less dependent on the family unit.
They feed primarily on other mammals that live in and around the ocean.
The vocalizations that they use to communicate are less complex than the methods of communication used by resident orcas.
The females in this groups also display a more triangular dorsal fin and primarily gray patches of color at the base of their fin.
The waters of the northeastern Pacific are the home of Offshore orcas.
This type of orca is estimated to account for roughly one-third of the killer whale population.
These groups have been spotted congregating in numbers of over 200 individual whales.
They tend to feed on schooling fish, but they will come onshore to hunt unsuspecting mammals.
Although the albino killer whale seems to be an anomaly in the genetics of the orca species, the killer whale itself dates back to over ten million years ago.
The actual age of a killer whale can be determined by the size of its dorsal fin.
With a dorsal fin that extends a total of 6.6 feet in the air, scientists and researchers have been able to determine that Iceberg is 16 years old.
Considering that the average male will have a life-span of around 29 years, Iceberg has just past the middle of his life.
The average female, on the other hand, will live an average of 50 years and can continue breeding until they have reached the age of 40.