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Wholphin is the name given to a hybrid mammal, the result of interbreeding between the false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) and bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Unlike most hybrids, wholphins are not infertile and are capable of producing offspring. Such unorthodox unions are not restricted to captivity, with documented sightings of wild wholphins off the coast of Hawaii.


The first wholphin to capture the public's attention was Kekaimalu, born to captive animals in Hawaii's Sea Life Park in 1985[1][2]; a similar hybrid was recorded in Japan in 1981, living for a mere 200 days. Since 1991, Kekaimalu has had three calves; two died young, the third calf, named Kawili Kai, was born in 2004, and is currently living in the park with her mother[3]. All three calves were sired by bottlenose dolphins.

The size, color and shape of the wholphin are intermediate between those of the parental species, reaching 13 to 22 feet in length and weighing 660 pounds. Kekaimalu is dark, almost black in color, with a shortened beak containing 66 teeth[4] - intermediate between the bottlenose dolphin (88 teeth) and the false killer whale (44 teeth).

Although similar unions between false killer whales and dolphins are suspected, a melon-head / rough-toothed dolphin hybrid was recently discovered in the wild[5].


  1. https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-1986-05-18-8602060063-story.html
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/14/science/14creatures.html
  3. https://www.sealifeparkhawaii.com/node/165
  4. https://www.softschools.com/facts/hybrid_animals/wholphin_facts/2702/
  5. https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2018/07/31/dolphin-whale-hybrid-spotted-in-hawaii-is-the-first-of-its-kind-but-its-not-a-wolphin.html