For many years, we’ve been going to such places like, SeaWorld, and Six Flags, to see vast animals, like Orcas, also known as the killer whale, which we wouldn’t normally see out in the wild. Orcas have been around for millions of years; it’s known to be one of the smartest mammals, closest to humans. Since of their friendliness, people have taken advantage of them. For the past sixty years people have brought these massive creatures into their aquariums to make profit out of it, but never thought about their lives. What if you were kept in a cage for years, and was pushed to do such activities, you wouldn’t do in your normal life. While being in captivities, killer whales are forced to do plentiful tricks, which they normally wouldn’t do
I believe that orcas should not be held in captivity because orcas are very intelligent animals that should not be held in small tanks, also captivity can cause health concerns, lastly seaworld taking orcas from families. For the last couple of years many people might have heard many stories of captive orcas suffering health problems, being taken away from their families and you might of even hear of killer whales eating their trainers. One of the most famous whales is a whale in captivity named tilikum. Tilikum has been involved in three deaths during his time in captivity. To learn more about tilikum keep reading.
Every year, marine parks attract millions of people around the world to witness killer whales swimming and socializing with other orcas and trainers, a site that is hard to achieve in the wild. The most common argument is that captivity allows the general public to observe orcas in a close proximity in a much more convenient way. PBS published an article, “Pro-Captivity Views,” arguing that orca captivity is the only option for such a large magnitude of people to observe orcas because it is nearly impossible for thousands of people observe whales in the wild, not to mention the harmful effects that the magnitude of whale watching boats would inflict on orca habitats (McBain). Whale watching is a costly excursion that many people cannot afford;
“All whales in captivity have a bad life. They’re all emotionally destroyed. They’re all psychologically traumatized. So they’re ticking time bombs.” This is a statement by Lori Marino from the documentary, Blackfish. Many statements like this one are common and believed to be true due to the proof that the documentary provides. There are many incidents that prove Orcas, also known as Killer Whales, are harmed in captivity and that their trainers are often harmed because of this, too. Orcas should not be kept in captivity since it is harmful to both Orcas and humans.
Another reason why orcas shouldn’t be in places like SeaWorld is because the habitat is bad and small for them. One example is that often the orcas get bored when they are in captivity and start to chip of the paint on the side of their enclosure’s walls. This then ruins their teeth, which then means regular dental check-ups. (B) In a way, orcas are similar to humans because they get bored. When whales are in the wild they can swim freely and for as long as they want. This shows that they aren’t as active as in the wild. For example, often there are dominant females and sometimes those dominant females can get violent. They get so violent that they start to hurt other whales. According to article Killer Whales Should Not Be Kept in Captivity,”
Orcas are also known as killer whales. Orcas have been around for many of years. They are the largest specie of the dolphin family. Most people recognize Orcas by being called “killer whales” and their color being black and white. Killer whales usually live up to 50 years old in the wild and a lot less in captive areas. Places such as Sea World have kept killer whales in captivity for many years. Although people enjoy the sight of the Orcas, we fail to see the harm it is causing them by keeping them in a secluded area. Are Killer Whales safer in confined spaces? Or should they be kept in their natural habitat? Being held captive limits their freedom and enjoyment of life and doesn’t allow them to be who they really are. Recent studies have shown that the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) claims “To confine them in a space that is, at best, a tiny fraction of the size of their ocean home, depriving them of natural stimulation and social bonds, leads to boredom and, at worst, to poor
Many people go to SeaWorld or other marine amusement parks to see these animals that they have never seen before for their own pleasure and wonders. Some people don’t know or care how these creatures even got there in the first place. Taking these orcas from the wild is depleting the population in the wild and it is killing them by keeping them in captivity. There is no way to mimic the ocean so that these animals can live comfortably and happy in captivity. Orcas do not thrive in captivity despite claim’s, they often suffer deadly physical, psychological, and social side effects. (My thesis-made up before I did my research)
The effect on orca whales being held in captivity is not the greatest, and the history between humans and the whales that are held in captivity is also not very good. It is a subject that many scientists are working together to learn about. Even though the orcas help to educate kids by doing live shows and by helping them understand that they need to save the orca whales that are endangered, orcas should not be held in captivity because many accidents have happened between humans and the captive orcas and it is not good for their health. Another name for the orca whales is the scientific name, “orcinus orca”, or the name that you probably hear most often
“If you love something, set it free.” This is a quote that has circulated for years, and nowhere else is it more applicable than in SeaWorld’s parks. Trainers and corporate alike claim a deep love for the animals they keep captive, but in recent years, the topic of holding orca whales in captivity has become more controversial than ever before. The CNN documentary “Blackfish” brought the conditions Seaworld provides for its orcas to the public eye in a way that had not been done before, which led to much public outrage. The containment of orca whales for educational and entertainment purposes has, in almost every way, been brought into question. Ranging from the physical and psychological damages they experience, the issues in their family structures, and the dangers that their human trainers experience, orca whales are not fit to be kept in captivity.
Since 1961, 157 orcas, or killer whales, have been ripped from their homes and shoved into captivity. 127 of these orcas are now dead. With the number of captured orcas plus the number of those born into captivity, The W.D.C. (Whale and Dolphin Conservation) reports that, “At least 162 orcas have died in captivity, not including 30 miscarried or stillborn calves” ( “The Fate”1). Out of the 127 taken into captivity, 44 have died in SeaWorld. There are currently 58 orcas residing in 14 marine parks in eight different countries. 24 of those orcas are held in SeaWorld’s three parks in the United States. Since 2002, 14 have been taken out of the wild and put into these marine parks. (“The Fate”1) It is not fair for these innocent creatures to be physically and mentally manipulated and damaged. Such brutality would not be condoned if it were targeted towards a human, and it should not be condoned when targeted toward an animal. Orca whales should not be held in captivity because they are forced to live in subpar conditions, they are mistreated while in captivity, and they are led to aggressive behavior.
There are currently sixty orcas held in captivity in at least fourteen marine parks in eight different countries. The captivity of the Orcinus Orcas or better known as Shamu the Killer whale for decades have been in the hands of man. For decades the question of what is humane, justifiable thing to do for these intelligent creatures? Should the Orcas be kept in captivity? Since the 1960s orcas have been used as a use of public entertainment for the world to see. The other side of this says that these orcas can benefit from being in captivity to show how intelligent these animals can be. They can be a use of profit for these parks and major entertainment companies. So, trainers say that captivity gives us the opportunity to research and study
There is so much we can learn from Orcas in captivity. Biologists have limited understanding about killer whales in the wild. We cannot observe them 24/7 and we cannot live in their environment. Being with these mammals up-close could give us some clues about how they interact with each other. This would include physical behavior, their dialect, and how their families work together. These are things we would never have to chance to do with the killer whales in their natural habitat. (Teen Inc., 2010) However, when a whale is placed in captivity it is stripped of its ability to communicate with the whales in its pod. In essence it would be like placing someone in a completely different culture with no means of communicating with anyone around them. Imagine the stress of not being able to communicate any needs or feelings with those around you.
In 2013 CNN made a documentary called “Blackfish” were it shows how the life of orca whales have been in captivity. Orca whales are such an amazing and beautiful creature; however, it is not right that these whales are kidnapped so young. The blackfish documentary has also proved that since the 1970’s, baby orcas have been hunted and made to perform in front of a large social gathering. SeaWorld states that
Orcas in captivity suffer from more than just physical imperfections. Dosed with drugs to help the killer whales deal with stress, they suffer terribly in marine parks. Animals and humans share the same immune system. Just as stress reduces our immune system, it does the same to the killer whale. Therefore, stress has been an indirect cause of death in captive killer whales. Killer whales in captivity experiencing stress tend to beat their head against the walls of their tanks until it bleeds. At least three captive whales have killed themselves with this repetitive motion brought on by stress. Have you ever heard of this happening in the wild? Not only does it not happen, an Orca in the wild would never bring bodily harm upon itself. Denial of their right to live in their true habitat where they belong causes the killer whales much stress, frustration, anxiety, and sadly aggression. In the wild Orcas, do not attack humans as they have in marine parks. As Barry (2010, Para, 12) explained, "Isolation among marine animals is highly stressful, which leads to abnormal behavior." Marine parks such as Sea World have what they call petting pods, where the children can pet and feed the Orcas. Orcas are given tranquilizers to help them deal with the stress and anxiety of human contact. People might not be so eager to pet these wild mammals if they knew everything the Orca had to go through just so they