Lecanto High School, LHS News 12

The Last SeaWorld Orca

https://www.flickr.com/photos/barnyardbbs/2033915187, photo labeled okay for reuse with modification

 

SeaWorld’s last orca to be born in captivity was born Wednesday at SeaWorld’s amusement park in San Antonio, Texas.

The baby orca has yet to be given a name, due in part to its sex being unknown.
The father, Tilikum died of pneumonia back in January. The mother, Takara, 25 years old, was pregnant prior to SeaWorld’s announcement of stopping the orca breeding program.
The Average orca has a gestation period of 17 to 18 months.
“The birth of Takara’s calf is also the last chance for researchers to study orca development in ways that cannot be done in the wild,
helping to benefit wild whales as well as those in SeaWorld’s care,” SeaWorld said in a statement Wednesday.

SeaWorld announced the closing of their breeding program shortly after the release of the documentary ‘Blackfish’.
The film took a dark look in to the breeding program of SeaWorld, relating orcas to ruthless killers.
The film focuses on a male orca Tilikum, an orca who killed his trainer back in 2010.
The film was released  in 2013.  SeaWorld made the announcement to end the breeding program in March 2016.

PETA (People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals) has called for the mother and the calf to be transferred to a seaside orca sanctuary.