The finback whale is the fastest whale in the world. They can swim in short bursts of up to 35 mph. Finbacks cannot sustain these speeds for long periods and usually swim at speeds of 15 mph.
Orcas and pilot whales are among the fastest whales. Both species can swim in short bursts of over 30 mph. Sei whales are also fast swimmers with short bursts of 23 mph, although there are reports of Sei whales that can reach up to 40 mph. Whales use the short bursts of speed when hunting prey. The fast bursts also occur when whales are swimming from other predators or danger.