pilot whale


Definition of pilot whale

: either of two dark gray to black, medium-sized toothed whales (Globicephala melas and G. macrorhynchus) of temperate to tropical waters that have a large rounded forehead and short snout and typically feed on squid and small fish

called also blackfish

Examples of pilot whale in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Three pilot whales had beached and died two months earlier in a stranding that killed 21 animals in all. David Brown, Washington Post, "Georgia’s Sea Islands: A destination worth the paddle," 28 Feb. 2020 Two months before the stranding, about 50 pilot whales had come ashore on St. Simons Island. David Brown, Washington Post, "Georgia’s Sea Islands: A destination worth the paddle," 28 Feb. 2020 About 26 total pilot whales were spotted in the area, George said, and crews were searching the nearby waters for signs of any more strandings. Russ Bynum, San Diego Union-Tribune, "15 pilot whales dead in Georgia’s 2nd stranding since July," 26 Sep. 2019 In July about 50 pilot whales beached themselves on the Georgia coast for unknown reasons. CBS News, "1 whale found dead, 3 others euthanized on South Carolina beach," 30 Sep. 2019 In July, dozens of beachgoers stepped in to help at least 47 pilot whales beached on south Georgia's St. Simons Island. Jay Croft, CNN, "Pilot whales turned up again on a Georgia beach. 16 of them died," 28 Sep. 2019 Visitors will not only explore submarine feeding stations attracting large pelagic fish like manta rays and pilot whales, but gain a deeper understanding of one of the world’s most isolated societies. Brandon Presser, Harper's BAZAAR, "The 20 Best Places to Travel in 2020," 30 Dec. 2019 According to The Mirror, 23 whales, including a pregnant pilot whale, were recently driven on to the shore by boats and then slaughtered. Kelli Bender, PEOPLE.com, "Annual Faroe Islands Whale Slaughter Leaves Scenic Waters Blood Red," 5 Aug. 2019 In June last year, a short-fin male pilot whale died after ingesting more than 17 pounds of plastic bags and packaging. Gianluca Mezzofiore, CNN, "A deer found dead in a Thai national park had 15 pounds of plastic in its stomach," 26 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pilot whale.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of pilot whale

1867, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pilot whale

Time Traveler for pilot whale

Time Traveler

The first known use of pilot whale was in 1867

See more words from the same year

Statistics for pilot whale

Cite this Entry

“Pilot whale.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pilot%20whale. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on pilot whale

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pilot whale

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pilot whale

Comments on pilot whale

What made you want to look up pilot whale? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt painting a young scholar and his tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!