While our whales each have their own personality, Nakai is truly unique.

In September of 2001, Nakai’s birth marked a very important milestone in marine mammal science. He was the first killer whale (also known as Orcinus orca or “orca”) to be conceived through artificial insemination.

Today, he is so full of energy and a fast learner. Nakai really enjoys learning new behaviors and it seems like he can almost guess what you’re going to ask him to do next! He’s always one step ahead. Nakai has always been an independent whale; for example, at just two months old, he sought out his trainer’s attention.

He loves engaging with trainers and enjoys gelatin and playing with toys. Nakai is definitely a growing boy at almost 18 feet long and weighing 5,700 pounds. His large pectoral flippers and tall straight dorsal fin are two of his defining characteristics. An extremely social animal, Nakai gets along well with all the whales in our killer whale family.

-Autumn, Senior Animal Trainer

Quick Facts

  • Born: September of 2001
  • Male
  • Weighs 5,700 pounds
  • Measures 18 feet long
  • Distinguishing Physical Characteristics: large pectoral flippers
  • Research involved in: audiogram (hearing) study, photographic assessment of body shape changes study, breath sampling (CO/CO2) study

Autumn, Senior Animal Trainer


I began my career as a trainer at SeaWorld San Diego in 2007. In 2014, I transitioned to Shamu Stadium where I started training killer whales!