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#BLACKFISH (1 Viewer)

Read Death at Seaworld. Really opens your eyes. We took the kids there this past Summer. I told my wife I did not want to go but hot overruled. That will be the only time we go and I am not some kind of crazy tree hugger. Orcas do not belong in captivity.

 
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Read Death at Seaworld. Really opens your eyes. We took the kids there this past Summer. I told my wife I did not want to go but hot overruled. That will be the only time we go and I am not some kind of crazy tree higher. Orcas do not belong in captivity.
Agreed. Generally I dont care but whales do not belong in captivity. FWIW neither do most animals but orcas, dolphins, elephants, lions, tigers, and polar bears stand out as animals that particularly suffer in captivity. I cant even imagine the level of heartlessness neccessary to capture baby orcas.

 
I live ~ 1 mile away from Sea World San Diego and just re-upped my 2 year family pass a few months ago. I refuse to watch this b/c I know I'll want to tear my passes up.

 
I live ~ 1 mile away from Sea World San Diego and just re-upped my 2 year family pass a few months ago. I refuse to watch this b/c I know I'll want to tear my passes up.
You'd definitely never send them another dollar of your money. Worth a watch, seriously.

 
I stopped going to zoos a long time ago. I really can't stand to see the animals caged up. And especially the higher intelligence critters. Of course in our mad dash to destroy the planet at some point zoos will be the only places left to see them. And that makes me incredibly sad.

 
I stopped going to zoos a long time ago. I really can't stand to see the animals caged up. And especially the higher intelligence critters. Of course in our mad dash to destroy the planet at some point zoos will be the only places left to see them. And that makes me incredibly sad.
I love the Austin Zoo. it is a reclamation zoo and all the animals came from some awful place and their life is considerably better at the Zoo. No, they aren't wild. But a pair of Lions that once upon a time provided security for a junkyard in Arkansas can't exactly be flown back to Africa and reintroduced to the wild.

 
I live ~ 1 mile away from Sea World San Diego and just re-upped my 2 year family pass a few months ago. I refuse to watch this b/c I know I'll want to tear my passes up.
You probably don't want to go for the whale show anyway. Was there a few months back when Blackfish broke and they don't touch the animals anymore. They just wave at them to do tricks. Show sucks.

 
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I stopped going to zoos a long time ago. I really can't stand to see the animals caged up. And especially the higher intelligence critters. Of course in our mad dash to destroy the planet at some point zoos will be the only places left to see them. And that makes me incredibly sad.
I love the Austin Zoo. it is a reclamation zoo and all the animals came from some awful place and their life is considerably better at the Zoo. No, they aren't wild. But a pair of Lions that once upon a time provided security for a junkyard in Arkansas can't exactly be flown back to Africa and reintroduced to the wild.
Yeah there are some good places out there. I don't mean to say they are evil or anything. I just really hate to see the animals caged up. And I look around everyday at disappearing habitat and it makes me sad that the only alternative is to put them in a cage or there will be none left.

 
I told you guys to short SEAS months ago when the movie came out. Noone saw it at the box office but now people are finding out after TV. This stock is going down, down. Cetaceans in captivity is just wrong and powered by greed.

 
Watched this last night and the after panel and crossfire. I actually didn't think it was that great of a documentary and think it's only getting so much attention because it's made by CNN Films and they're pimping it so much. It made some good points but I thought it was way too heavy handed and read more like an animal right propaganda piece than a real truth seeking documentary (not that there are really many truth seeking documentaries anymore). SeaWorld is screwing themselves by not opening up more and showing people all the good that they do and the changes that have happened in the last 30 years. They're bunkered down and hoping this thing goes away but considering CNN made the film they're not going to stop talking about it and everyone practically begged SeaWorld to be involved. That's probably more indicting than anything in the film.

Looked to me like in the 70's these animals were treated horribly, like most animals in most zoos in the 70's. Then things improved through the 80's and 90's, especially with places like SeaWorld, but there were still some shady characters. And now things are light years better than they were 40 years ago. Does anyone remember going to zoos when they were a kid? Even as a kid I remember thinking the zoo was kind of cruel, all these great animals in these dirty grey cages all day. You go now and it's a completely different world with a little ecosystem for each animal. If they made a documentary about zoos and half of it was about what they did 40 years ago and the other half was interviews with disgruntled ex-employees then you probably wouldn't go to the San Diego zoo anymore either.

The stuff about Tilicum was pretty bad and there were some bad decisions made and SeaWorld management should shoulder some of the liability in that trainers death but I don't think that one incident should be the death knell for the entire industry. In fact there was zero mention in the film about all of the good that SeaWorld does in animal rescure, research, and most importantly for these whales, the change in public perception over the last few decades. I was lucky enough to go on a whale watching trip up near the San Juan Islands just last month and it was amazing, one of the most majestic things I've ever seen. This entire industry owes itself to the public falling in love with these mammals and much of that through shows like this.

I took my kids to the circus a couple years ago and while we stood in line my kids had to hear a group of animal right activists holding signs screaming about how horrible we all were and how bad these animals were treated. The pictures on the signs were terrible. Last year the ASPCA and a few other organizations ended up having to pay like $10million to Barnum and cease and desist because their entire story was fabricated. PETA euthanizes 90% of the animals that enter its shelters but flips out if I want to eat a burger or Yassar Arafat uses a donkey to carry his bombs instead of a person. I love animals and believe we should treat them humanely and in many cases more humanely than we do, but so many animal rights organizations lack so much credibility that it's hard for me to take any of their messages seriously or not look at anything that comes form the animals rights movement without a giant dose of instant skepticism.

 
Watched this last night and the after panel and crossfire. I actually didn't think it was that great of a documentary and think it's only getting so much attention because it's made by CNN Films and they're pimping it so much. It made some good points but I thought it was way too heavy handed and read more like an animal right propaganda piece than a real truth seeking documentary (not that there are really many truth seeking documentaries anymore). SeaWorld is screwing themselves by not opening up more and showing people all the good that they do and the changes that have happened in the last 30 years. They're bunkered down and hoping this thing goes away but considering CNN made the film they're not going to stop talking about it and everyone practically begged SeaWorld to be involved. That's probably more indicting than anything in the film.

Looked to me like in the 70's these animals were treated horribly, like most animals in most zoos in the 70's. Then things improved through the 80's and 90's, especially with places like SeaWorld, but there were still some shady characters. And now things are light years better than they were 40 years ago. Does anyone remember going to zoos when they were a kid? Even as a kid I remember thinking the zoo was kind of cruel, all these great animals in these dirty grey cages all day. You go now and it's a completely different world with a little ecosystem for each animal. If they made a documentary about zoos and half of it was about what they did 40 years ago and the other half was interviews with disgruntled ex-employees then you probably wouldn't go to the San Diego zoo anymore either.

The stuff about Tilicum was pretty bad and there were some bad decisions made and SeaWorld management should shoulder some of the liability in that trainers death but I don't think that one incident should be the death knell for the entire industry. In fact there was zero mention in the film about all of the good that SeaWorld does in animal rescure, research, and most importantly for these whales, the change in public perception over the last few decades. I was lucky enough to go on a whale watching trip up near the San Juan Islands just last month and it was amazing, one of the most majestic things I've ever seen. This entire industry owes itself to the public falling in love with these mammals and much of that through shows like this.

I took my kids to the circus a couple years ago and while we stood in line my kids had to hear a group of animal right activists holding signs screaming about how horrible we all were and how bad these animals were treated. The pictures on the signs were terrible. Last year the ASPCA and a few other organizations ended up having to pay like $10million to Barnum and cease and desist because their entire story was fabricated. PETA euthanizes 90% of the animals that enter its shelters but flips out if I want to eat a burger or Yassar Arafat uses a donkey to carry his bombs instead of a person. I love animals and believe we should treat them humanely and in many cases more humanely than we do, but so many animal rights organizations lack so much credibility that it's hard for me to take any of their messages seriously or not look at anything that comes form the animals rights movement without a giant dose of instant skepticism.
Should be noted I loath PETA. I'd like to euthanize them.

 
I'll still be taking my kids to the zoo and Sea World. Good luck explaining this one to your kids when they get older. :loco:

 
I'll still be taking my kids to the zoo and Sea World. Good luck explaining this one to your kids when they get older. :loco:
Well I don't have kids. But I assume if I did I would have explained it to them a long time ago. My discomfort with zoos started when I was pretty young. It grew as I got older. I think kids would get it.

 
I have seen the Zoo in my home town change dramatically over the decades. In the early 70's when I was a kid it was all ceramic tile and metal cages. Essentially animals on display for the convenience of mankind. As the decades turned the Zoo was transformed with much more natural habitat and a greater focus on local species. sure there were still baboons and chimpanzees. But their habitats were much larger and aimed at giving something more akin to what their "wild" habitat would look and feel like. The whole zoo took on a less antiseptic and more natural feel. So much so that on somedays you cant see the animals because they are so well hidden in their habitats. The zoo also focuses largely on its conservation efforts with its Manatee Hospital and Rehabilitation Center. The zoo is also working to restore the Red Wolf population as this animal is currently extinct in the wild.

I have serious doubts about keeping large mammals in captivity such as orcas or elephants. But there is a place in scientific research and the expansion of human knowledge for zoos and animal parks.

 
The problem with Seaworld is that they try to hide saying that they do research. Well, if they do research where are the publications. Where is the discourse about the science. The issue with Tilikum is that it was not just 1 incident with him - the one where he killed Dawn. There were multiple other incidents with that whale in other parks. Seaworld was aware of the history of Tilikum. How he was pulled out and separated from his family at a young age. They keep him because he breeds. Close to a third of all the whales in captivity have been bred from Tilikum.

It is a shame. They could do so much more good if they truly wanted to.

 
The problem with Seaworld is that they try to hide saying that they do research. Well, if they do research where are the publications. Where is the discourse about the science. The issue with Tilikum is that it was not just 1 incident with him - the one where he killed Dawn. There were multiple other incidents with that whale in other parks. Seaworld was aware of the history of Tilikum. How he was pulled out and separated from his family at a young age. They keep him because he breeds. Close to a third of all the whales in captivity have been bred from Tilikum.

It is a shame. They could do so much more good if they truly wanted to.
In fairness, SeaWorld is a for profit, publicly traded entity. I agree that what they are doing pushes the moral envelope, but Tilikum is obviously a big part (if not THE biggest) of their breeding program, which is essentially their bread and butter. The shareholder lawsuits would be insane if they decided to suddenly do what is right and release all of the orcas. :shrug:

Capitalism isn't all cotton candy and lemonade.

 
The problem with Seaworld is that they try to hide saying that they do research. Well, if they do research where are the publications. Where is the discourse about the science. The issue with Tilikum is that it was not just 1 incident with him - the one where he killed Dawn. There were multiple other incidents with that whale in other parks. Seaworld was aware of the history of Tilikum. How he was pulled out and separated from his family at a young age. They keep him because he breeds. Close to a third of all the whales in captivity have been bred from Tilikum.

It is a shame. They could do so much more good if they truly wanted to.
I agree with some of this. If SeaWorld really wants to clean up some of this bad PR they should immediately start a public research program where all of this "research" they talk about is processed by real scientists releasing real results in publications that can be discussed and consumed by the marine mammal community. Start making good on many of these claims and push the education side as a resource to the this scientific community in addition to their awareness benefits.

As for Tilikum, all of the violence seems to surround this one whale who obviously has problems but has a huge financial value to the company. Why not remove him from any shows or training and just "put him out to pasture". Set up a stud farm and let him roam free there and stop sticking trainers in the water with him. Because one single whale gets violent does the government need to put a stop to all whale shows? If you apply this principle to other entertainment areas where people have tragically but accidentally died then we're going to have to shut down Nascar, all stunts in Hollywood movies, professional wrestling, the National Parks, and every other place where tragedy has struck in singular unfortunate events. We already have systems in place to debate and apply industry safety standards and we have a legal system that will penalize corporations or individuals who are liable for their poor decision making and who put profit in front of safety and good judgement. SeaWorld should be tried for culpability in the death of Dawn Brancheau and penalized if the facts bear out that they were partially responsible for her death. This will happen and the system will work. But that doesn't mean the company needs to be destroyed and the entire industry banned because of one aggro whale.

The debate about the captivity of these large mammals, and especially whales, has to be had in a broader context than the actions of a single whale. We need some perspective. We've come a long way from using the whales as target practice for our Navy and rounding them up in the Puget sound by tossing dynamite in the water to herd them. Just as we've come a long way from how we used to recklessly hunt game to extinction and keep giant cats and apes in tiny steel cells for their entire lives. It doesn't mean we need to ban hunting and zoos completely. Progress has been made and there are real life benefits in research, understand, and public awareness that surround captivity of all sorts of animals. The debate has to include that and not just be an emotional snap judgement based on a one sided propaganda piece that includes almost no serious scientific analysis but spends 90 minutes passing along emotional videos and anecdotes by disgruntled ex-employees.

 
Unless you're tweeting the # sign is stupid. It means something in a system that uses tagging like twitter, but putting it into every internet posting you make is stupid. It's taking over facebook and I wouldn't be surprised if teachers start seeing homework coming in with hashtags on it.

#homeworksucks

 
I live ~ 1 mile away from Sea World San Diego and just re-upped my 2 year family pass a few months ago. I refuse to watch this b/c I know I'll want to tear my passes up.
So you admit to being an uninformed consumer. That information would have been very helpful in other threads.

 
Unless you're tweeting the # sign is stupid. It means something in a system that uses tagging like twitter, but putting it into every internet posting you make is stupid. It's taking over facebook and I wouldn't be surprised if teachers start seeing homework coming in with hashtags on it.

#homeworksucks
Actually, Facebook and Instragram also recognize hashtags for something. Not sure what they do on those 2 platforms, but I'm sure it's something like how Twitter uses them.

 
The problem with Seaworld is that they try to hide saying that they do research. Well, if they do research where are the publications. Where is the discourse about the science. The issue with Tilikum is that it was not just 1 incident with him - the one where he killed Dawn. There were multiple other incidents with that whale in other parks. Seaworld was aware of the history of Tilikum. How he was pulled out and separated from his family at a young age. They keep him because he breeds. Close to a third of all the whales in captivity have been bred from Tilikum.

It is a shame. They could do so much more good if they truly wanted to.
In defense of Sea World, the first death associated with Tilikum cant be attributed directly to him he may have been involved in the drowning but he wasnt alone in it. This may have also been a territorial attack as both of the females where pregnant, although the park was unaware of this fact at the time. The second death was some idiot who hid from security after hours in an illicit attempt to swim with an orca.

 
Two places I visited where I felt an overbearing sense of sadness and had to leave.

1. The San Diego Zoo

2. An Indian reservation near the Four Corners

 
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Sea world can still be king of the sea still if they changed from these stupid shows putting humans into tanks, and instead had huge world record aquariums and made it more like an environment and had an educational component more than the fake tricks.

This doc was really sad though. Those whale seem so intelligent, emotional, and caring about their families.

 
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Sea world can still be king of the sea still if they changed from these stupid shows putting humans into tanks, and instead had huge world record aquariums and made it more like an environment and had an educational component more than the fake tricks.

This doc was really sad though. Those whale seem so intelligent, emotional, and caring about their families.
I think you're missing the point. No matter how big the tent is, you're still in the circus.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjOlDJB34ws. The guy in this clip became an activist after a dolphin he caught committed suicide.

 
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The problem with Seaworld is that they try to hide saying that they do research. Well, if they do research where are the publications. Where is the discourse about the science. The issue with Tilikum is that it was not just 1 incident with him - the one where he killed Dawn. There were multiple other incidents with that whale in other parks. Seaworld was aware of the history of Tilikum. How he was pulled out and separated from his family at a young age. They keep him because he breeds. Close to a third of all the whales in captivity have been bred from Tilikum.

It is a shame. They could do so much more good if they truly wanted to.
Google is quite useful. I searched research papers published by SeaWorld and under just one heading of reproductive breeding there was a listing of over 80 papers published by a variety of scientists in the field who did research at or with SeaWorld.

 
Asked my kids if they wanted to go to the circus this year as we've never gone. They said that they've seen it on Tom and Jerry and didn't want to go to a place where animals get whipped. :)

 
All you Green Peace fellas keeping your kids from trick or treating this year? I hear animals were abused somewhere along the way when the candy was made.

 
Asked my kids if they wanted to go to the circus this year as we've never gone. They said that they've seen it on Tom and Jerry and didn't want to go to a place where animals get whipped. :)
You've got to be freaking kidding me. :lmao: I've never heard a child say anything close to that. Are they 16?
 
Asked my kids if they wanted to go to the circus this year as we've never gone. They said that they've seen it on Tom and Jerry and didn't want to go to a place where animals get whipped. :)
You've got to be freaking kidding me. :lmao: I've never heard a child say anything close to that. Are they 16?
Nope, it was the 9 year old. The 6 year old goes along with anything she says though.

I don't think she's against all animals being whipped, but lions and tigers specifically. Which is what happens in Tom and Jerry at the circus. She's in this big cat phase for whatever reason despite us not actually owning a cat.

 
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Not all attacks are fatal and Tilikum isn't the only whale to attack a trainer.

Just from a quick wiki search:

There have been multiple attacks on humans by captive killer whales, with some of them being fatal.
In 1968, the young female orca, Lupa, of the New York Aquarium, chased her trainers out of the tank, snapping her jaws threateningly. Trainers were cleaning the tank at the time of the incident.[17]

In 1970, Cuddles, a male orca who resided in both the Dudley Zoo and Flamingo Park (now Flamingo Land) in England, became so aggressive towards his trainers, having attacked them twice, that his keepers were forced to clean his pool from the safety of a shark cage.[17]

On April 20, 1971, SeaWorld secretary Annette Eckis Godsey was talked into riding the park's main attraction, a 10-year-old female orca named Shamu, at the park in San Diego, California as a publicity stunt. As the ride was coming to an end Godsey was suddenly thrown off the whale's back. The orca seized the woman by her leg and began pushing her through the water. Trainers on the side of the tank grabbed the young woman and attempted to pull her out of the water but the whale again grabbed a hold of the woman's leg and refused to let go. Shamu's jaws had to be pried apart with a pole in order to free her.[18] Godsey was carried away on a stretcher and required 200 stitches to close the wounds she suffered.[19] Shamu may have done this out of curiosity, as Godsey was wearing a bikini while riding the orca, instead of the traditional wet suit that is usually worn.[20] Godsey later said the whale was being playful.[21]

In the early 1970s, a Marine World/Africa USA trainer, Jeff Pulaski, while riding a young female orca named Kianu during performances, was thrown off and chased out of the tank.[22]

At the same park, also in the early 1970s, an unidentified Marine World trainer was seized by the young male Orky II, and held at the bottom of the tank until the man nearly lost consciousness.[17]

In the early 1970s, trainer Manny Velasco recalls both Hugo and Lolita of the Miami Seaquarium becoming aggressive, lunging and snapping at the trainers standing on the center work island ending the training session for the day.[17]

In the early 1970s, during a water work session Hugo refused to allow trainer Chip Kirk to get out of the water, Kirk explained to a journalist from the Palm Beach Post. Hugo bit him several times on the arm badly enough to leave a scar, which Kirk showed to the reporter.[23]

In the early 1970s, Hugo grabbed trainer Bob Pulaski by the wetsuit and began thrashing him, Pulaski struggled but it only made things worse, then Hugo's tank mate Lolita joined in and began a tug of war. Pulaski managed to free himself from the tangled wetsuit and get to safety. Pulaski did not mention if he sustained any injuries. In both incidents Kirk and Pulaski believe the orcas were only playing.[23]

On May 2, 1978, another Marineland of the Pacific trainer, 27-year-old Jill Stratton, had an incident with Orky II. Stratton was nearly drowned when the 10-year-old Orky II suddenly grabbed the young woman and dragged her to the bottom of the tank, holding her there for nearly 4 minutes.[24][25]

In the 1970s, another Marine World California trainer, Dave Worcester, was dragged to the bottom of the tank by the park's young male orca, Nepo.[22]

In the 1970s, a Vancouver Aquarium trainer, Doug Pemberton, recalls that, "Skana once showed her dislike by dragging a trainer around the pool. Her teeth sank into his wetsuit but missed his leg." Pemberton described both young female Skana and her male companion Hyak II as "moody", but stated that Skana was the dominant animal in the pool. "She is capable of changing moods in minutes".[26]
In the 1970s, trainer Chris Christiansen received 7 stitches in his cheek after young male orca Hugo closed his mouth on Christiansen's head.[17]

On February 23, 1984, a 7-year-old female orca by the name of Kandu V grabbed a SeaWorld California trainer, Joanne Hay, and pinned her against a tank wall during a performance.[27] Hay was let go after another trainer jammed a fist into the whale's blowhole.[28]

In November 1986, trainer Mark Beeler was held against a wall by Kandu V during a live performance.[29]

In 1986, an unidentified MarineLand, Ontario trainer was taken to the hospital after he fell off the park's male killer whale, Kandu 7 (not to be confused with Kandu V), and was dragged by his leg around the pool during a trick.[30]

In 1986, a 4-year-old female orca, Nootka V (not to be confused with Nootka IV), whacked an unidentified MarineLand, Ontario trainer in the head with her pectoral during a show. According to a former trainer, the whale had a habit of leaping out of the water in an attempt to strike trainers by the pool in the chest.[30]

On March 4, 1987, 20-year-old SeaWorld San Diego trainer, Jonathan Smith, was grabbed by one of the park's 6-ton killer whales. The orca dragged the trainer to the bottom of the tank, then carried him bleeding all the way back to the surface and then spat him out. Smith gallantly waved to the crowd when a second orca slammed into him. He continued to pretend he was unhurt as the whales repeatedly dragged him to the bottom of the stadium pool. Smith was cut all around his torso, had a ruptured kidney and a six-inch laceration of his liver, yet he managed to escape the pool with his life. Later reports indicate that the whales involved in the attack had been 10-year-old female Kenau and 9-year-old female Kandu V.[27][31]

On June 15, 1987, a 29-year-old SeaWorld San Diego trainer, Joanne Webber, suffered a fractured neck when Kandu V, a 9-year-old female orca, landed on top of her and pushed her to the bottom of the pool during a training session. Webber had five years of experience working with orcas.[32]

On November 21, 1987, trainer John Sillick was riding on the back of a female orca when Orky II, a five-ton male, jumped and landed upon him.[33] Sillick had to have multiple surgeries; his back, hips, pelvis, ribs and legs were severely fractured.[34] The incident led to the firing of SeaWorld's president and 3 other employees.[35] In an interview, he said, "I'm learning to walk again."[36]
On April 1, 1989, Nootka IV of Sealand of the Pacific pulled her trainer, Henriette Huber, into the whale tank after the 6-year-old female bit down while the trainer had her hand in the mouth of the orca in order to scratch its tongue. Huber needed several stitches in order to close her wounds.[37]

Later that same year (1989), Nootka IV of Sealand of the Pacific grabbed a tourist's camera that was accidentally dropped into the whale's tank. Head trainer Steve Huxter attempted to retrieve the camera but was pulled into the pool when the orca refused to give up its new toy. The orca grabbed a hold of the trainer's leg but Huxter was pulled to safety by fellow trainer Eric Walters.[38]

On February 20, 1991, the three orcas that resided at Sealand of the Pacific in Victoria, British Columbia (Haida II, Nootka IV, and Tilikum) killed a young part-time trainer named Keltie Byrne when she accidentally slipped and her foot fell into the tank.[39] This facility did not allow the trainers to get in the water with the animals so the orcas were not accustomed to having people in their tank. It is unclear which orca initiated the assault but rumored to be Tilikum based on the interviews done for the documentary "Blackfish." It is alleged that Tilikum grabbed the trainer by the foot and dragged her into the water, and the other two quickly joined in, pushing and throwing the young woman around the pool.[40] All three animals barred her escape, continuously blocking her path and dragging her back into the center of the tank. Sealand staff tried unsuccessfully to distract the orcas with fish, noise, voice and hand commands. It was several hours before Ms. Byrne's body could be recovered.[41] Sealand of the Pacific closed soon after the incident and sold all of their orcas to the SeaWorld franchise; Haida II and her calf Kyuquot (who was born sometime after the incident) were both moved to SeaWorld Texas. Haida II eventually died in 2001. Nootka IV and Tilikum were both transferred to the SeaWorld in Florida. Nootka IV passed away in 1994. Tilikum was directly responsible for another trainer's death in 2010. See later bullet. Haida II and Nootka IV were both impregnated by Tilikum at the time of the accident.

In 1993, 14-year-old female Kasatka tried to bite an unidentified SeaWorld California trainer (not Kenneth Peters).[42]

On July 5, 1999, at SeaWorld Orlando Florida, a deceased, homeless man by the name of Daniel Dukes was found nude and in one of the orca tanks draped across the back of the park's largest male orca, Tilikum. This was one of the three Orcas involved in the death of Sealand of the Pacific trainer Keltie Byrne in 1991. An autopsy revealed that the man died of a combination of hypothermia and drowning. Dukes was covered in bruises, abrasions and bite marks, and his scrotum had been ripped open,[43] indicating that Tilikum had clear contact with the victim but whether or not Tilikum actually caused the man's death could not be determined.[44] Dukes had apparently hidden himself in the park until after closing and then entered the orca's tank. It is thought that Dukes may have been mentally unstable or under the influence of drugs. Dukes had been reported by Seaworld staff to have "dived" with other sea mammals, earlier that year he had to be removed from the manatee tank, which is warmer and hosts much more docile creatures. A joint of marijuana was found in the pile of clothes he left next to the tank. No Seaworld admission ticket was found, but staff made it well known that this man did not fall into Tilikum's tank. He had to hop a 3 foot plexiglass barrier, several guardrail fences and descend the steps into the 80X100 tank.[45] The autopsy shows that some scratches and bites he received were post mortem.[citation needed]

On June 12, 1999, 22-year-old Kasatka grabbed her trainer Ken Peters by the leg and attempted to throw him from the pool during a public show at SeaWorld San Diego.[2]

On July 8, 2002, a trainer by the name of Tamaree was hospitalized for a broken arm and several minor injuries after an incident occurred in Shamu Stadium at SeaWorld Florida. The 28-year-old trainer was doing poolside work with two of the park's orcas, Orkid and Splash. "She was playing with the whales, talking to them… the next thing we know, as it appears from the video, she was pulled into the water," said SeaWorld spokesperson Darla Davis. Visitor video shows that the trainer was pulled in by her foot after the female Orkid grabbed a hold of it during the session. Both Orkid and Splash continuously pulled the trainer under as she screamed for help. A fellow trainer made the decision to make as if to let in a more dominate female into the pool. Orkid who was holding the trainer at the time dropped her and Tamaree was able to escape. Park officials stated that the trainer exited the pool without assistance and was taken to a local hospital, where a pin was needed to reset her arm.[46][47]

In late July 2004, during a show at the SeaWorld park in San Antonio, Texas, a male orca named Kyuquot (nickname Ky) repeatedly jumped on top of his trainer, Steve Aibel, forcing him underwater and barred the trainer from escaping the water. After several minutes the trainer was able to calm the animal and he exited the pool unhurt.[48] "Veterinarians believe the whale... felt threatened by the trainer, perhaps a result of the effects of adolescent hormones."[49][50]

On April 4, 2005, SeaWorld Florida trainer Sam Davis was repeatedly "bumped" by an 11-year-old male orca named Taku. The show continued uninterrupted but the trainer was later taken to Sand Lake Hospital for unspecified minor injuries and released the same day. Additional eyewitness account: "The trainer and Taku were about to slide on the slide out at the end of the show when Taku completely stopped and started "bumping" the trainer. The trainer was male and he finally swam out of the tank. I knew something was wrong because none of the whales except Kalina wanted to perform. Then they finally got Taku out to splash people at the end of the show, when this incident took place."[51]

On November 15, 2006, a SeaWorld California trainer was injured when the park's 18-year-old female killer whale, Orkid, grabbed veteran trainer Brian Rokeach by the foot and pulled him to the bottom of the tank, refusing to release him for an extended period of time. Orkid released Rokeach only after heeding fellow trainer Kenneth Peters's repeated attempts to call the animal's attention back to the stage. Rokeach suffered a torn ligament in his ankle but was not taken to the hospital. In response to the incident, SeaWorld increased the number of trainers who must be available during performances and in water training to five staff members, but this was ineffective because a fortnight later trainer Kenneth Peters was involved in a similar incident with a different orca.[52][53]See next bullet for Peters attack.

On November 29, 2006, Kasatka, one of SeaWorld San Diego's seven orcas, grabbed her trainer, Kenneth Peters, by the foot and dragged him to the bottom of the tank several times during an evening show at Shamu Stadium. The senior trainer barely escaped, after 9 terrifying minutes, when Kasatka released him. The whale chased and tried to grab him again, after he got out of the pool. This was the second documented incident of Kasatka attacking Peters and was the third most widely reported of all the SeaWorld incidents.[2]

On October 6, 2007, at the Loro Parque a 29-year-old German trainer, Claudia Vollhardt, who had worked at the park since 2003, was hospitalized after she was injured during a training session with the male orca Tekoa.[54] The Canarias 7 newspaper says the incident happened at the pre-show warm up on Saturday, when the orca crashed into the trainer, injuring her right lung and breaking her forearm in two places. OME News wrote that it was a male orca that hit the trainer and dragged her down after the impact. Then that same animal dragged her back up to the surface. She was rescued by two colleagues after the incident. The trainer was in a stable condition after surgery. Vollhardt trained mostly with 6-year-old male Tekoa and some news reports referred to him as the orca involved in this incident.[55]

On September 9, 2008, during a show at Marineland Antibes in France, a 26-year-old female orca named Freya began acting oddly in the middle of the show then pulled an unidentified trainer under the water. The trainer resurfaced after a few seconds only for Freya to return and begin jumping on top of the man. After landing on top of her trainer twice, she began to push him through and under the water. The trainer tried to regain control of the situation by climbing on the orca's back but was thrown off. The trainer eventually managed to get to the edge of the pool and climb out, seemingly unhurt.[56]

In the spring of 2009, a 5-year-old female orca named Skyla turned on an unidentified trainer while performing in one of Loro Parque Tenerife's daily shows. Skyla started pushing her trainer through the water and up against the sides of the pool. "Water work" has been suspended with her and only senior trainers are allowed to work with her now.[57]

On December 24, 2009, 29-year-old Alexis Martínez died during a rehearsal for a Christmas Day show at the Loro Parque Park in Spain. The 14-year-old male orca, Keto, who was born at SeaWorld Orlando Florida, reportedly rammed Martínez in the chest, rendering him unconscious. Martinez supposedly drowned before fellow trainers could rescue him. The park repeatedly asserted that this was not an attack but an unfortunate accident caused by roughhousing, however the park also describe Keto as "not... (being) completely predictable." The subsequent autopsy report revealed that Alexis died due to the serious injuries he sustained from the orca attack, including multiple compression fractures and tears to his vital organs with the bite marks all over his body.[58] Martinez was considered one of the most experienced trainers in Loro Parque, having worked at the park since 2004.[59]

Tilikum, who has been involved in 3 deaths, swims in the Dine with Shamu exhibit in Orlando, Florida.
On February 24, 2010, the orca Tilikum killed Dawn Brancheau,[60] an experienced trainer, at the end of a "Dine with Shamu" show at SeaWorld Orlando.[60] SeaWorld officials confirmed that Tilikum grabbed Dawn Brancheau by her left arm and pulled her into the water, drowning her.[61] The autopsy determined that the trainer died of "multiple traumatic injuries and drowning".[62] Note that Tilikum was involved in two previous fatalities. See bullets February 20, 1991 and July 5, 1999.
 
That same wiki page documents a total of five orca attacks on humans in the wild with zero fatalities and only one resulting in a human being bitten.

 

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