Sea World of hurt

In 2013, the movie “Blackfish” shocked its viewers worldwide by exposing Sea World for their cruel and inhumane treatment of captive orca whales. Even though ticket sales have been dropping, the parks still have hundreds of customers that need to see the harsh reality that the SeaWorld orcas face everyday.

So far, there have been 24 dead orcas, way too many for my liking. Of these 24 whales who died at SeaWorld since 1986, not a single one died of old age, according to a veterinarian who visited the park. Most of the deaths were caused by captivity-induced illnesses like parasite infections, upper respiratory infections and damaged immune systems. These whales are put through huge amounts of trauma, and they end up dying because of it.

Many people have been comparing the tanks the whales live in to bathtubs for humans. These tanks are forcing large animals who naturally swim up to 100 miles a day in the ocean to swimming in circles in tiny, dark concrete tanks. This causes various stress-induced behaviors like head banging, water bobbing and gnawing on concrete.This also causes a condition known as a collapsed dorsal fin. Since the orca whales have no space to swim in or current to keep their dorsal fins upright, they collapse. SeaWorld tells their visitors that this condition is common; however, in the wild, this is very rare and is a sign of an injury or an unhealthy whale. Sea World is teaching their workers to lie to visiting children.

SeaWorld is tearing close-knit families apart. In the wild, orca whales spend their entire lives in a pod with their mothers and siblings. Capturing just one of these magnificent creatures disrupts the whole pod. During a wild orca capture, many whales end up dead and the bodies hidden, while the rest are distraught and left confused without their family. Animals born in SeaWorld are often taken away from their mothers and shipped off to other aquatic facilities for profit. Keep in mind that these are animals of great emotion, not objects.

People shouldn’t support SeaWorld if they don’t support the jailing of innocent people, because that’s exactly what SeaWorld does to their animals. Scientists at Emory University in Georgia tracked the brains of these animals and concluded that they are closely related to human in intelligence. Captivity is rough on these sensitive creatures, just as it is on people. The catch is, the whales are being punished without having committed a crime.

These whales are living a terrible life of pain and trauma due to the conditions and treatment at the parks they are captive in. There are 24 dead orcas already and countless still suffering. It’s time to end the cruelty and recognize SeaWorld for what it really is.