Scientist have been doing research on killer whales since the 70's and much has been learned about how these whales interact with each other and also how they live in their natural environments. Some facts about killer whales include that the killer whale is one of the most noticeable creatures on the planet and there have been many different studies done in reference to these whales and the habitats they live in. The orca whale most often travels in groups that consist of many females and calves as well as one or two males. The social structure of the orca whale is seen as similar to a lion pride because there are only a few males in any particular group. Some groups of orca whales are only comprised of a female orca whale and the calves that she will support for life. This has been observed with orca whales for many years now and their families are most often stable all around the world. Many researchers have been working on finding out whether the orca whale families always stay together or if they go and return to each other after a period of time.
When it comes to the research done on orcas captured in the wild much of this research has been based on public concern and in order to raise orca whales in aquariums. Those that have been captured have been carefully monitored and are distinguished from each other by way of the different markings that each orca whale has on its body. Many orcas have also been released back into the wild after capture and sightings of these tagged orcas have been well documented showing that the orca is a stable in its habitat. Orcas have not been hunted in the manner that other whales have in their long history on this earth so this makes their population widely distributed. Though the whales are not endangered the presence of manmade chemicals and pollutants pose a serious threat to orcas as well as many other marine animals.