lovingorcas
lovingorcas:

tillytrua123:

blondewithbuttonnose:

The Lonely Life of Tilikum: Six Tons of Killer-Whale Power Incarcerated, SubduedBy Helene Hesselager O´BarryEarth Island InstituteDavid Kirby, renowned journalist and author of Death at SeaWorld, recently had a brilliant idea. Using the mapping application Google Earth, he zoomed in on SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park in Florida, and a satellite image of SeaWorld´s Shamu Stadium appeared on his screen. This is where several orcas, also known as killer whales, are incarcerated and used in performances. One of these orcas is called Tilikum. Best known as the orca that, in 2010, pulled his trainer underwater and killed her, Tilikum has endured more than three decades of confinement. Google Earth´s above shot shows Tilikum confined, in isolation, in what is known as G Pool. He is facing the metal gate that separates him from the other orcas, as if asking to join them. Kirby posted the image on Facebook along with the words, “Thank you, Google Earth, for documenting the loneliness of this orca.” Tilikum was only about two years old when he was snatched from his mother off the coast of Iceland in 1983. He has been kept at SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park since 1992, and even though nothing about the tanks there even remotely resembles the natural ocean world, SeaWorld´s Vice President of Communications, Fred Jacobs, in October of last year gave this statement to CNN: “Our killer whale habitats are the largest and most sophisticated ever constructed for a marine mammal.” Merriam-Webster defines the word habitat: “the place or type of place where a plant or animal naturally or normally lives or grows.” An amusement park is not where orcas normally live, and while they can be forced to grow there, it is not where they naturally belong. Largest of the dolphins, these intelligent top predators have honed their survival skills over millions of years. Their sleek, torpedo-shaped bodies are built for speed and for traveling long distances. Orcas use their sophisticated echolocation to hunt and navigate, and they communicate with each other using series of clicks, whistles, and calls. Each orca pod develops its own unique dialect, illustrating their highly evolved social behaviors. On its website, SeaWorld describes the social nature of orcas: “Killer whales live in cohesive long-term social units called pods. A pod is a group of individuals that travel together the majority of the time.” Had Tilikum not been yanked out of his ocean home, he would likely still be travelling the deep, chilly waters of Iceland for miles each day, going from one destination to the next. His world would have been one of tremendous diversity, new challenges, and boundless activities, such as hunting, playing, and socializing with pod members. With every leap out of the water, he would see an endless ocean, free of barriers other than where the ocean meets the shore. At more than thirty years of age, he would have acquired the skills of a master hunter, and, under the experienced guidance of his mother, would have learnt an impressive number of team-oriented methods of hunting live prey. The orca is the largest animal ever to be taken into captivity. The largest ever orca on record in captivity, Tilikum is endowed with six tons of physical strength coupled with tremendously complex brain power. Trapped in a minuscule tank, with no escape from the tropical heat and surrounded by souvenir shops, popcorn stands, ear-deafening music and applauding audiences, all of Tilikum’s powerful potential is methodically subjugated by manmade constructions of impenetrable walls and metal bars. The Google Earth image posted by Kirby on Facebook reveals with such obviousness the inherent wrongs of subjecting an ocean-roaming and exceptionally social animal to solitary confinement with nothing to do and nowhere to move. Indeed, the only sophistication to be found in Tilikum’s impoverishing incarceration is in Tilikum himself, and Fred Jacobs is woefully wrong when he boasts that SeaWorld has constructed the largest and most sophisticated habitat for killer whales ever. SeaWorld has constructed no such thing. Only nature has.

^^^^^^^ ” David Kirby, renowned journalist and author of Death at SeaWorld, recently had a brilliant idea. Using the mapping application Google Earth, he zoomed in on SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park in Florida, and a satellite image of SeaWorld´s Shamu Stadium appeared on his screen. This is where several orcas, also known as killer whales, are incarcerated and used in performances. One of these orcas is called Tilikum. Best known as the orca that, in 2010, pulled his trainer underwater and killed her, Tilikum has endured more than three decades of confinement. Google Earth´s above shot shows Tilikum confined, in isolation, in what is known as G Pool. He is facing the metal gate that separates him from the other orcas, as if asking to join them. Kirby posted the image on Facebook along with the words, “Thank you, Google Earth, for documenting the loneliness of this orca.”  -……………………… —————————-Tell Mr Kirby thanks but we are not that stupid. No idea how current this even is because I pulled my house up on google earth and it showed my house with my previous car in the driveway. Not very current. Also, a picture is a snapshot for a second it does not tell a story. Anyone who has been to seaworld or who looks right here on tumblr at the pics and videos KNOWS Tilly is usually with Trua and recently Tilly and Trua were together all the time. So again, I havent read this post beyond the above but tell Mr Kirby to spare me the drama.

That’s some top notch journalism right there. Because Mr. Kirby cropped the tank which shows another orca (Trua almost certainly) playing under the water hose. 
I can’t even believe how manipulative that is. 

You’ll also notice he isn’t actually looking into the gate at any other orcas because there are none in that pool or the pool immediately beyond it. 


And he cropped the tank not only to hide Trua, but to make the tank look like half of its actual size.
"Incarcerated" - what a ridiculously harsh word in this context. My dogs and my parrot are as "incarcerated", as is every horse I’ve ever ridden.
I knew a stallion who (of course) was kept away from all the other horses, being a stallion, and kept alone in a round pen, while the other horses get large pastures. The only time stallions like him get to see other horses close up are through bars in their stalls, and possibly while being ridden.
No one has a problem with that apparently?
What is it about orcas or cetaceans that is so unique from every other animal we keep?

lovingorcas:

tillytrua123:

blondewithbuttonnose:

The Lonely Life of Tilikum: Six Tons of Killer-Whale Power Incarcerated, Subdued

By Helene Hesselager O´Barry
Earth Island Institute

David Kirby, renowned journalist and author of Death at SeaWorld, recently had a brilliant idea. Using the mapping application Google Earth, he zoomed in on SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park in Florida, and a satellite image of SeaWorld´s Shamu Stadium appeared on his screen. This is where several orcas, also known as killer whales, are incarcerated and used in performances. One of these orcas is called Tilikum. Best known as the orca that, in 2010, pulled his trainer underwater and killed her, Tilikum has endured more than three decades of confinement. Google Earth´s above shot shows Tilikum confined, in isolation, in what is known as G Pool. He is facing the metal gate that separates him from the other orcas, as if asking to join them. Kirby posted the image on Facebook along with the words, “Thank you, Google Earth, for documenting the loneliness of this orca.” 

Tilikum was only about two years old when he was snatched from his mother off the coast of Iceland in 1983. He has been kept at SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park since 1992, and even though nothing about the tanks there even remotely resembles the natural ocean world, SeaWorld´s Vice President of Communications, Fred Jacobs, in October of last year gave this statement to CNN: “Our killer whale habitats are the largest and most sophisticated ever constructed for a marine mammal.” 

Merriam-Webster defines the word habitat: “the place or type of place where a plant or animal naturally or normally lives or grows.” An amusement park is not where orcas normally live, and while they can be forced to grow there, it is not where they naturally belong. Largest of the dolphins, these intelligent top predators have honed their survival skills over millions of years. Their sleek, torpedo-shaped bodies are built for speed and for traveling long distances. Orcas use their sophisticated echolocation to hunt and navigate, and they communicate with each other using series of clicks, whistles, and calls. Each orca pod develops its own unique dialect, illustrating their highly evolved social behaviors. 

On its website, SeaWorld describes the social nature of orcas: “Killer whales live in cohesive long-term social units called pods. A pod is a group of individuals that travel together the majority of the time.” Had Tilikum not been yanked out of his ocean home, he would likely still be travelling the deep, chilly waters of Iceland for miles each day, going from one destination to the next. His world would have been one of tremendous diversity, new challenges, and boundless activities, such as hunting, playing, and socializing with pod members. With every leap out of the water, he would see an endless ocean, free of barriers other than where the ocean meets the shore. At more than thirty years of age, he would have acquired the skills of a master hunter, and, under the experienced guidance of his mother, would have learnt an impressive number of team-oriented methods of hunting live prey. 

The orca is the largest animal ever to be taken into captivity. The largest ever orca on record in captivity, Tilikum is endowed with six tons of physical strength coupled with tremendously complex brain power. Trapped in a minuscule tank, with no escape from the tropical heat and surrounded by souvenir shops, popcorn stands, ear-deafening music and applauding audiences, all of Tilikum’s powerful potential is methodically subjugated by manmade constructions of impenetrable walls and metal bars. The Google Earth image posted by Kirby on Facebook reveals with such obviousness the inherent wrongs of subjecting an ocean-roaming and exceptionally social animal to solitary confinement with nothing to do and nowhere to move. Indeed, the only sophistication to be found in Tilikum’s impoverishing incarceration is in Tilikum himself, and Fred Jacobs is woefully wrong when he boasts that SeaWorld has constructed the largest and most sophisticated habitat for killer whales ever. 

SeaWorld has constructed no such thing. Only nature has.

^^^^^^^ ” David Kirby, renowned journalist and author of Death at SeaWorld, recently had a brilliant idea. Using the mapping application Google Earth, he zoomed in on SeaWorld´s Orlando amusement park in Florida, and a satellite image of SeaWorld´s Shamu Stadium appeared on his screen. This is where several orcas, also known as killer whales, are incarcerated and used in performances. One of these orcas is called Tilikum. Best known as the orca that, in 2010, pulled his trainer underwater and killed her, Tilikum has endured more than three decades of confinement. Google Earth´s above shot shows Tilikum confined, in isolation, in what is known as G Pool. He is facing the metal gate that separates him from the other orcas, as if asking to join them. Kirby posted the image on Facebook along with the words, “Thank you, Google Earth, for documenting the loneliness of this orca.”  -……………………… —————————-Tell Mr Kirby thanks but we are not that stupid. No idea how current this even is because I pulled my house up on google earth and it showed my house with my previous car in the driveway. Not very current. Also, a picture is a snapshot for a second it does not tell a story. Anyone who has been to seaworld or who looks right here on tumblr at the pics and videos KNOWS Tilly is usually with Trua and recently Tilly and Trua were together all the time. So again, I havent read this post beyond the above but tell Mr Kirby to spare me the drama.

That’s some top notch journalism right there. Because Mr. Kirby cropped the tank which shows another orca (Trua almost certainly) playing under the water hose. 

I can’t even believe how manipulative that is. 

You’ll also notice he isn’t actually looking into the gate at any other orcas because there are none in that pool or the pool immediately beyond it. 

And he cropped the tank not only to hide Trua, but to make the tank look like half of its actual size.

"Incarcerated" - what a ridiculously harsh word in this context. My dogs and my parrot are as "incarcerated", as is every horse I’ve ever ridden.

I knew a stallion who (of course) was kept away from all the other horses, being a stallion, and kept alone in a round pen, while the other horses get large pastures. The only time stallions like him get to see other horses close up are through bars in their stalls, and possibly while being ridden.

No one has a problem with that apparently?

What is it about orcas or cetaceans that is so unique from every other animal we keep?

pinkcloudturnedtogrey

pinkcloudturnedtogrey:

This is Kshamenk. He’s the only orca living in captivity in Argentina. He’s been living at Mundo Marino Park alone ever since his companion Belen died in 2000. 

Kshamenk’s tank is way too small for an orca and it’s said that the water is way too warm and that the metal tank is rusting. His living conditions are very poor to say the least.

Kshamenk is known as uncooperative, sexually frustrated, angry, and depressed. He is very hostile towards his trainers.

Seaworld sent some of their people to see Kshamenk in 2011 to retrieve semen from him. One of Seaworld’s female orcas named Kasatka was then artificially inseminated with Kshamenk’s semen and on February 14 2013 she gave birth to their son Makani. 

Kshamenk is a good candidate for release into the wild because he was about five or six years old when captured, which means he had plenty of time to gain experience in natural survival skills such as foraging, navigating, communicating and the use of sonar.

He would be the only one I think could be the next “Free Willy” - meaning it would be better if he could be released, or put in a sea pen (since he can never leave Argentina for a better facility and they seem to taking rather poor care of him).

I don’t know very much about his situation or Keiko’s in Mexico, but they do seem similar - alone, small tanks with poor, warm water. Mundo Marino even lied about capturing him, saying they “rescued” the whales.

Capturing is bad enough, but at least Russia isn’t currently going “Oh well we rescued these whales”. (Not that I like the russian captures, but at least they’re not lying to make themselves look good.)

i-bertholdt-youso
i-bertholdt-youso:

nimwey:

One thing about lifespan I think we need to make clear is “sample bias”.

I’m left-handed, and I was quite aghast a few years ago when I read that left-handed people live on average nine years less than right-handed people! I wondered, how is that possible?
So I recently looked it up, and the answer was in the way the study had been made. It came from a study decades ago, when they had looked up 2000 dead people, contacted their relatives and asked if the dead person was left- or right-handed. And what they found, was, like I said, left-handed people live on average nine years less.

But they had made a mistake, in that they had forgot to consider something. Long ago, in the first half of the last century and before, it was not acceptable to be left-handed. Children were forced to use their right hand in school (this happened to my grandfather), and in severe cases, their left hand was tied behind their backs. So they became right-handed.
So in that study, any people that were left-handed would have HAD to have died young, because before, there *were* almost no left-handed people. So “left-handed people live nine years less” is false.
This is how I see the current discussion on orca lifespan. Orca captivity is 50 years old this year. 50-60 years is considered average lifespan for females, and maximum lifespan for males. Neither male nor female has had any chance of reaching their maximum lifespan yet, and females have barely had enough time to reach their average.
So how could we possibly compare the captive population with wild whales that are 50, 60, 70 and more years old? How can anyone possibly think that’s fair? There is going to be a huge “sample bias”.
What I would be interested in, is if we would count only wild whales born since the 60s or 70s (captivity in those days was very poor so I don’t see that as really fair either), and then still, the captive population is really small. So skip all the wild whales born before the 60s or 70s (there are no and were never any captive whales born before then), and only use as many (random) wild whales as there are captive examples. Then I think we would get a much more *honest* calculation.
(Also, remember that, according to the document “Conservation Plan for Southern Resident Killer Whales”, life expectancy at birth is as low as 29 for females and 17 for males - and that is raised to 50-60 for females and 29 for males once they reach adolescence, which means many wild orcas die young.)



Your argument literally makes no sense

Really? So how else would you explain it?"Killer whales in captivity die young!" is like saying "people born in the 1960s all die young, not one has reached the age of 80 yet!"Of course they haven’t reached that age yet, because they didn’t exist yet at that point. Same with captive killer whales. They haven’t had a chance to reach their full lifespan yet.
Or if I had kept lots of dogs, all starting as puppies, but only for a period of five-eight years. Any dogs that died would have had to have died young, because I hadn’t kept them long enough for them to become old.

i-bertholdt-youso:

nimwey:

One thing about lifespan I think we need to make clear is “sample bias”.

I’m left-handed, and I was quite aghast a few years ago when I read that left-handed people live on average nine years less than right-handed people! I wondered, how is that possible?

So I recently looked it up, and the answer was in the way the study had been made. It came from a study decades ago, when they had looked up 2000 dead people, contacted their relatives and asked if the dead person was left- or right-handed.
And what they found, was, like I said, left-handed people live on average nine years less.

But they had made a mistake, in that they had forgot to consider something.
Long ago, in the first half of the last century and before, it was not acceptable to be left-handed. Children were forced to use their right hand in school (this happened to my grandfather), and in severe cases, their left hand was tied behind their backs. So they became right-handed.

So in that study, any people that were left-handed would have HAD to have died young, because before, there *were* almost no left-handed people. So “left-handed people live nine years less” is false.

This is how I see the current discussion on orca lifespan.
Orca captivity is 50 years old this year.
50-60 years is considered average lifespan for females, and maximum lifespan for males. Neither male nor female has had any chance of reaching their maximum lifespan yet, and females have barely had enough time to reach their average.

So how could we possibly compare the captive population with wild whales that are 50, 60, 70 and more years old? How can anyone possibly think that’s fair? There is going to be a huge “sample bias”.

What I would be interested in, is if we would count only wild whales born since the 60s or 70s (captivity in those days was very poor so I don’t see that as really fair either), and then still, the captive population is really small.
So skip all the wild whales born before the 60s or 70s (there are no and were never any captive whales born before then), and only use as many (random) wild whales as there are captive examples.
Then I think we would get a much more *honest* calculation.

(Also, remember that, according to the document “Conservation Plan for Southern Resident Killer Whales”, life expectancy at birth is as low as 29 for females and 17 for males - and that is raised to 50-60 for females and 29 for males once they reach adolescence, which means many wild orcas die young.)

Your argument literally makes no sense

Really? So how else would you explain it?
"Killer whales in captivity die young!" is like saying "people born in the 1960s all die young, not one has reached the age of 80 yet!"
Of course they haven’t reached that age yet, because they didn’t exist yet at that point. Same with captive killer whales. They haven’t had a chance to reach their full lifespan yet.

Or if I had kept lots of dogs, all starting as puppies, but only for a period of five-eight years. Any dogs that died would have had to have died young, because I hadn’t kept them long enough for them to become old.

I keep working on my video, and the “raw material” is almost done (texts, pics - but it will still be a long while before I finish/release it as I need to do more research so I know it’s factual, and I always take my time to “polish” my videos), but there are a few points I haven’t addressed in it yet and am unsure what to make of.

"They are too intelligent to be in captivity"
Something I loved to say when I was anti-cap, and with parrots as well. But what does it really mean? (If I don’t know exactly what it means, I can’t come up with a good reply.) Then, I did address “slavery” and anthropomorphism, so I may not need to bring that point up.

Then - gelatins (is that just to get them more water because the thawed fish is dry? Because I sure have seen it demonized among anticaps, but I don’t know why), drugs, and as I mentioned earlier, teeth. I need more details on their dental care and why their teeth break.

kamaliisea

bitskeezy asked:

I saw your answer to someone about the movie Blackfish and keeping Orcas in captivity and I saw you said that Seaworld doesn't abuse the animals but I'm not really sure where you can come to this conclusion when the Orcas in captivity live significantly shorter lives than those in the wild and the Orcas that are in captivity have flopped dorsal fins which is obviously not natural. It doesn't matter that they get treatment, there is proof in the pudding that they don't belong anywhere but the sea

kamaliisea answered:

Thanks for your message!

What I meant specifically when I said animal abuse is that they don’t hurt the animals. They do everything in their power to make sure that the orcas have a healthy life. 

Orcas have only lived in captivity for a few decades. With any animal, their life spans are going to be shorter for some time until we learn how to properly care for them. Some orcas, like Tilikum and Ulises, are in their 30’s now, and they are still healthy, so who knows how long they are still going to live! It is likely that they will reach the lifespan of wild orcas. 

Yes, some captive orcas have floppy dorsal fins, but some wild orcas do too. It is more prevalent in human care, but according to all the research I have read about it in the past, a floppy dorsal does not hurt or negatively affect the animals.

As I said before, if you think orcas belong in the ocean, that is your opinion and I respect that. But I think there is a place for captive orcas in our society and the ones we have already should stay there. 

To be fair, the average lifespan for males in the wild (if they make it to adulthood), is only 29-30 years. So Tilikum, Ulises and Bingo have already outlived their average lifespan. Then males are said to reach a maximum of 50-60 (which is also supposed to be the female average).

:)

What is really the age of sexual maturity among orcas?
I know people love to toss out the number “15 in the wild, much earlier in captivity!”, it’s even on the Wikipedia page.

But we can obviously not force them to mature earlier. It’s only true that female orcas typically have their first surviving calf at 15 years in the wild, and the average age of first birth is 13, which means they first conceive on average age 11-12 in the wild. So clearly, since that’s average and not the very earliest, they can and do mate and conceive before that, even in the wild.

Then Kalina became a mother extremely early, at only 7½. And Tilikum’s firstborn was born in 1991, when he was 10, so he must have made Haida II pregnant aged 9. (Trua is currently not yet 9, and is often kept separate from the young females because the trainers fear he might get them pregnant?)

So what is the actual age of sexual maturity in orcas?

(I mean, female humans in more primitive cultures often have children in their late teens, but still many of us are sexually mature at age 12 or even younger. So sexual maturity and “first surviving child” should not be seen as the same thing.)

kyrrahaf

Anonymous asked:

SWs back pools are not that deep. They're all 15 ft. This is according to regulars, former trainers, photos taken from the private underwater viewing window, and pretty much everyone. There's also a math worksheet for kids that an anti-cap posted that was made by SW and they flat out told you how deep all the pools are.

bondedwiththesea answered:

I’ve never heard of any of the back pools being 15 feet, nor do they look that shallow. The med pool is 8-12 feet deep, and the back pools are clearly substantially deeper than that. If you don’t mind, could you please provide these sources for me?

kyrrahaf:

cetuscetus:

The only time I’ve been round the back pools was in 2004, so I can’t remember much but if you look at some of the photos that SeaWorld released when Makaio was born they definitely look like they were taken in a shallow pool. My guess would be one of the back pools since it doesn’t look like the show pool, DWS pool was closed when he was born and Tilikum was probably in the shaded pool at the time.

I think I’ve also heard educators say they’re 15ft, though they aren’t the best source of information. In any such case I do believe they are unfortunately that shallow.

image

The only thing I will contribute, since I don’t know the depths of any of the pools other than the show pool and the DWS pool, is that I see Tilikum do behaviors in the shaded pool - just the other day he did a side breach. I don’t know how deep that pool is, but it can’t be too shallow, otherwise he wouldn’t have the space to get that much height. But I’m sure some are that shallow, which is unfortunate. 

I’m being a necro-poster here now, but I’ve read that the shaded pool in Orlando is 20’ deep, closeup and show pool 36’ deep, and the side pools 25’. So no 15 feet there. In fact it seems the only SeaWorld orca pools that shallow, except for the med pools, are the side pools in San Diego.

http://orcafreak.webs.com/facilities.htm