Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

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Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by laika_wolf » Sat Jul 05, 2014 10:40 pm

I recently saw Blackfish, a documentary that discusses the life of Tilikum, the orca who killed head SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau. As someone who grew up going to SeaWorld, I was horrified at what I learned about the cruelty these animals go through. Today, however, I will just be discussing orcas. Here's 10 reasons why you should boycott SeaWorld and similar marine parks:

1) Orcas swim up to 100 miles per day and dive as much as 200 ft below the surface in the wild, while captive whales are kept in tiny tanks. Imagine being stuck in a few rooms for 25 years.
2) In the wild, male orcas usually life to about 30, but can live up to 50-60. Females usually live to around 50, but can live up to 100.
3) Out of all 159 orcas that have died in captivity, the 2/3 whales died before the age of 10 and only 30 lived beyond 20.
4) Orcas are extraordinarily intelligent creatures. They are known to have distinct languages and cultures that are unique to each pod. Because of this, two different orcas in captivity cannot communicate with each other, as they were captured from different pods. (Not all of SeaWorld's orcas are captured from the wild, but many whales born in captivity die well before adulthood)
5) Orcas are extremely emotional, more so than humans. These whales have an enlarged limbic lobe which is divided into three separate lobes. Humans only have one lobe. They have more spindle cells, which process social organization and empathy, than humans!
6) Orcas have a variety of things they eat, which depends on the pod's location. They eat different species of fish, seals, sea lions, squid, birds, sharks, other whales, and more. In captivity, their diet usually consists of dead herring.
7) As I described before, these whales are extremely intelligent. In their tanks, they have very little enrichment. (If you've ever seen their tanks at SeaWorld, you know what I'm talking about.) Their daily activities consist of swimming laps and doing some tricks several hours a day.
8) There is no record of any wild orca harming a human. In captivity, there are 129 incidents where an orca has injured or killed a person. This is obviously a major safety issue.
9) Orcas have been severely injured by other whales and are commonly seen harming themselves (like chewing on metal bars that break their teeth). In the wild, threatened orcas would flee the scene and return when everything has settled down. In captivity, there is nowhere to go. You can google images of such injuries, but I won't link to them as they're quite graphic.
10) Heavily pregnant females are often forced to perform tricks in shows like flipping and leaping out of the water. One female orca was performing 5 days before she gave birth. This is why SeaWorld doesn't discuss their orcas' pregnancies until the babies are born.

Overall, all of this evidence suggests that captivity is not a suitable life for orcas or other large marine mammals. You can help by boycotting marine parks like SeaWorld and spreading the word.

I'd love to discuss this with you guys and answer any questions you have on this topic! Thank you so much for reading my lengthy post. I really appreciate it. :)

Sources: keepwhaleswild.org greymattersjournal.com/killer-whales-are-non-human-persons/ orcahome.de/incidents.htm
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by firedog6 » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:11 pm

SeaWorld is very cruel.

They capture orcas and place them in cages just for show!
That cruel place captures majestic wild sea creatures and, without permission, puts them in a giant cage just for sheer entertainment, even though, it's slowly killing the poor sea-life.
Wow, I just read all of those reasons and they're so sad! I absolutely despise SeaWorld. Yes, it is just like taking you, whoever is looking at this post right now, which you are obviously a human with emotion - and putting you in a room for your life. You would probably live until you were around ninety, however, because you're in this place, you only live until you're about forty. You only have two or three toys to play with forever, and you just get one type of food that you kind of like - even though there are many other varieties you like even more. The only difference is, the whales have even more emotion!!
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by alethe » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:30 pm

I have always been disgusted with this place. If it says anything, I'm not going on our band trip this year just because its at Seaworld. No way am I supporting those people, and if it means missing out on a trip with my friends then so be it. I hate what they do to their animalsz especially the whales and dolphins. It would be one thing if the animals were in rehab and non-releasable, but as far as I know most of the animals there are perfectly healthy. Its really quite sad.


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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by firedog6 » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:38 pm

Yes. Once, when I used to be in Girl Scouts, my "troop" went to SeaWorld for a sleepover. I passed. It disgusted me.

It is one thing, as River said, if a sick dolphin comes and is healed - however, it cannot be released because it forgot how to hunt for itself, then yeah, keep it. If they just take animals from their natural habitat, then NO.
Last edited by firedog6 on Sun Jul 06, 2014 10:25 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by laika_wolf » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:43 pm

river6 wrote:I have always been disgusted with this place. If it says anything, I'm not going on our band trip this year just because its at Seaworld. No way am I supporting those people, and if it means missing out on a trip with my friends then so be it. I hate what they do to their animalsz especially the whales and dolphins. It would be one thing if the animals were in rehab and non-releasable, but as far as I know most of the animals there are perfectly healthy. Its really quite sad.
Actually, the animals there are not healthy because of their poor living conditions. They don't get enough exercise, they don't get enough nutrients from their diet, there is actually some inbreeding going on (but the offspring that were results of inbreeding died), and poor dental hygiene.
Are you able to discuss this with your band trip? I'm sure they wouldn't want to perform for such a company.
firedog6 wrote:Yes. When I used to be in Girl Scouts, they went to SeaWorld and I didn't go. It was a sleepover, it disgusted me.

It is one thing, as River said, if a sick dolphin comes and is healed - however, it cannot be released because it forgot how to hunt for itself, then yeah, keep it. If they just take animals from their natural habitat, then no.
Of the sick/injured animals that SeaWorld has taken in, other groups have had to pressure SeaWorld into taking the animal in!
Some of the things I've read say that they attempt to train the animals in rehab. If they are successful, they say that the animal 'isn't able to return to the wild'. If they animal won't be trained, they release it.
Also, a dolphin that is in rehab might need a refresher on how to hunt, but it'll learn in no time.
Last edited by Anonymous on Tue Jul 08, 2014 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by alethe » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:58 pm

laika_wolf wrote:
river6 wrote:I have always been disgusted with this place. If it says anything, I'm not going on our band trip this year just because its at Seaworld. No way am I supporting those people, and if it means missing out on a trip with my friends then so be it. I hate what they do to their animalsz especially the whales and dolphins. It would be one thing if the animals were in rehab and non-releasable, but as far as I know most of the animals there are perfectly healthy. Its really quite sad.
Actually, the animals there are not healthy because of their poor living conditions. They don't get enough exercise, they don't get enough nutrients from their diet, there is actually some inbreeding going on (but the offspring that were results of inbreeding died), and poor dental hygiene.
Are you able to discuss this with your band trip? I'm sure they wouldn't want to perform for such a company.
I meant they would be if they were in the proper conditions, sorry for the confusion. I'm going to discuss it with my director, though. We aren't going there for the entire trip (its like three days long, I think SW is one day) and I am going to see if he will change it.


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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by laika_wolf » Sun Jul 06, 2014 4:24 pm

river6 wrote:
laika_wolf wrote:
river6 wrote:I have always been disgusted with this place. If it says anything, I'm not going on our band trip this year just because its at Seaworld. No way am I supporting those people, and if it means missing out on a trip with my friends then so be it. I hate what they do to their animalsz especially the whales and dolphins. It would be one thing if the animals were in rehab and non-releasable, but as far as I know most of the animals there are perfectly healthy. Its really quite sad.
Actually, the animals there are not healthy because of their poor living conditions. They don't get enough exercise, they don't get enough nutrients from their diet, there is actually some inbreeding going on (but the offspring that were results of inbreeding died), and poor dental hygiene.
Are you able to discuss this with your band trip? I'm sure they wouldn't want to perform for such a company.
I meant they would be if they were in the proper conditions, sorry for the confusion. I'm going to discuss it with my director, though. We aren't going there for the entire trip (its like three days long, I think SW is one day) and I am going to see if he will change it.
Awesome! Kudos to you for sticking up for the whales! :D
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by DerpBacon » Mon Jul 07, 2014 6:19 am

No. Just no. I am never going to pay 1 penny to a marine park again. Although I never really went to SeaWorld, I went to a similar marine park in Miami. Yes, it was enjoyable, but now it makes me sick.

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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by Nordue » Tue Jul 08, 2014 4:33 pm

  • Just a reminder laika_wolf to edit a post if you would like to say more, instead of posting twice in a row! I combined your posts into one for you, but next time, try it for yourself :)!

    I like your intentions river6, I hope your trip planner will listen to you!

    I too have seen Blackfish, twice now. It was a good documentary. I went to Marine Land once in my childhood, before I thought about captive animal issues. I got to pet a beluga whale on the head after waiting an hour and a half in line.

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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by BlackWarrior » Wed Jul 09, 2014 6:36 pm

I have also seen Blackfish after various mentions of the documentary here and there. Before seeing the film, I was aware of these sorts of issues with both aquatic and marine parks as well as small zoos. I've never agreed with this sort of behavior and discourage people from supporting companies who undergo such activities. With animals living in small compounds with busy loud lives their health is most definitely impacted by their continual stress.

I went to Sea World many years back and discovered the fun new experiences these places offered at a young age... And I believe that the underlying problem is that people are unaware... Many families don't know about the conditions of the animal's care behind the scenes. And as kids, we didn't ever consider it..
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by laika_wolf » Wed Jul 09, 2014 8:17 pm

BlackWarrior wrote:I have also seen Blackfish after various mentions of the documentary here and there. Before seeing the film, I was aware of these sorts of issues with both aquatic and marine parks as well as small zoos. I've never agreed with this sort of behavior and discourage people from supporting companies who undergo such activities. With animals living in small compounds with busy loud lives their health is most definitely impacted by their continual stress.

I went to Sea World many years back and discovered the fun new experiences these places offered at a young age... And I believe that the underlying problem is that people are unaware... Many families don't know about the conditions of the animal's care behind the scenes. And as kids, we didn't ever consider it..
I actually saw Blackfish after a friend of mine gave a speech at our school about animal cruelty at marine parks. Many people were completely shocked, as you say, but many others seemed like their suspicions had been confirmed. I was that way. I loved going there to see the animals, but in the back of my mind, I knew that it wasn't quite right.
I think another reason that people still go to Sea World is that the staff gives false information about these animals, such as orca lifespans, veterinary care, aggression between whales, the intelligence of their animals, etc. People assume that the film is propaganda with organizations like PETA protesting there. Personally, I can see where pro-caps are coming from, but they should really do more research and just use common sense. It's obvious, just by looking at marine parks, that it's inhumane to keep these animals captive.

PS: Sorry about that, Tonbei! Thanks for editing that for me. :)
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by TheSeaWolf » Sat Oct 10, 2015 3:15 pm

We already have a "cetaceans in captivity" thread, you know, in the Zoos section of the Forum. I have a good 14 pages of Word worth of debunking anti-SeaWorld claims. So I won't start all on that here. I'll just say a few things. Warning: If you reply and try to debate with me, you will get an essay in response. Don't bite off more than you can chew. ;3

Point One: Blackfish is full of misinformation, and altogether the worst "documentary" I have ever had the misfortune of watching. I can respect the anti-captivity side, but no words are strong enough to express my disdain for Blackfish. I have loved orcas my entire life, and learned everything I could about them. And here Blackfish has spawned hordes of people who spread misinformation about these amazing animals and criticize a world-class facility that they know nothing about. This very thread is a good example.

Point Two: SeaWorld is a world-class zoological facility. They are accredited by the AZA & the AMMPA (both of which also accredit & are supported the Minnesota Zoo - the very facility who has brought us this game and forum. They endorse both organizations here, on this very website: http://www.wolfquest.org/mnzoo_about.php And both defend and support SeaWorld! A Minnesota zoo employee worked with SeaWorld vets in a very pro-SW study, as well. Time to boycott WolfQuest.), which both have rigorous animal welfare, education, and conservation standards. The people at these facilities are the REAL experts in animal care and welfare, and they actively defend that SeaWorld upholds these standards. I cannot and will never believe animal rights activists, like PETA, who stole someone's chihuahua and killed her within 24 hours, and who also kills thousands of other pets each year. Over 33,000 to date, whereas SW has RESCUED 26,000 - ask yourselves, who really cares about animals here? Or HSUS, who demonizes snakes and tries every year to rob more and more reptile keepers of their rights; including the opportunity to teach children that reptiles AREN'T evil monsters. The AR movement that wants to take away all our pets, all our zoos, and doom so many species to extinction. No, I will NOT believe the AR movement over the animal care professionals, or my own knowledge and experience. The WWF recently published a study that shows we have lost 52% of the world's animals since the 1970's. We need zoological facilities now more then ever, yet they are under attack. Two days ago I watched the hearing with the California Coastal Commission for SeaWorld's Blue World Project. I watched in amazement as people from PETA, HSUS, and independent individuals spoke against animal welfare. And every single one of them brought a whole lot of anti-zoo logic with them up to that podium. Taking down SeaWorld is the first step in destroying all zoos, especially since it means blatantly calling the AZA liars.

Point Three: Something here has really rubbed me the wrong way. Those of you who have said that pro-caps are ONLY pro-caps because we are "misinformed" - frankly, how dare you? Many pro-caps, including myself, are individuals who have done extensive research and have zoological experience. Who actually know about animal welfare. We know the atrocities of the AR movement, we know that cetacean welfare isn't unique from other animals. I can't imagine anything more disrespectful than to say that pro-caps "simply need to do more research." I have seen about every anti-captivity resource on the Internet, heard every anti-captivity argument. I was anti-captivity myself for some time in 2013. But now I fully embrace what I know to be true. I implore you all to be more open-minded when it comes to this issue. Try thinking of the animals and their welfare, not human emotions and ideals. Thank you.

Okay I promised myself I wouldn't do this, but some of these arguments are just so blatantly false that I would be mad at myself for not debunking them.

Of the sick/injured animals that SeaWorld has taken in, other groups have had to pressure SeaWorld into taking the animal in!
Some of the things I've read say that they attempt to train the animals in rehab. If they are successful, they say that the animal 'isn't able to return to the wild'. If they animal won't be trained, they release it.


Your source for all of this? Probably not offered, because it doesn't exist.
No one has asked SeaWorld to save 26,000 animals. You can't honestly tell me that another group had to tell SeaWorld to rescue all 26,000 animals that they have rescued. If you really, truly believe this, I would love to see legitimate documentation to prove it.

No that's not how rehab works. The NOAA has to deem animals releasable vs unreleasable. Their verdict depends on a lot more than whether or not it can be trained. It's mostly to do with their health.

Heavily pregnant females are often forced to perform tricks in shows like flipping and leaping out of the water. One female orca was performing 5 days before she gave birth. This is why SeaWorld doesn't discuss their orcas' pregnancies until the babies are born.


It's not like wild females have a vacation when they're pregnant. Unless swimming "100 miles a day" is somehow less physically taxing than performing in shows. Despite performing while pregnant, SeaWorld has still had many healthy calves born - obviously it isn't an issue. As for the second bit...again, where are you getting this stuff? As soon as SeaWorld found out that Kalia was pregnant with Amaya, they announced it, and gave a lot of updates on how the calf was developing. So they definitely discuss it before they're born.

If they just take animals from their natural habitat, then NO.

You know, they haven't done this in a very long time. They haven't captured orcas in over 25 years. And here, as I mentioned before, is some great anti-zoo logic. Do you think that every animal every zoo ever started out with was rescued? Here's a hint - the answer is NO. Some zoos still accept wild-caught animals to breed endangered species in captivity. Actually, the recovery of red wolves and Mexican Gray Wolves involved capturing animals and breeding them. And yes, I can hear it now - "But that's for conservation, not entertainment!" We're talking about animal welfare, or as you guys so emotionally call it, "cruelty." Human intentions don't affect animal welfare in any way, shape, or form. If it's cruel to capture animals, it's cruel. If you capture a wolf and then say "hey, it's alright, we stole you from your natural habitat to save you!" The wolf isn't going to magically be perfectly satisfied, thriving, and no longer subjected to cruelty. So again let's boycott the MZ, because once upon a time THEY captured animals, and they participate in wolf programs that captured wolves! And let's definitely boycott WolfQuest outright, because it glorifies Yellowstone wolves. They were captured and re-released into a new environment, which was not their "natural habitat."

Basically, that statement is absurd.

It would be one thing if the animals were in rehab and non-releasable, but as far as I know most of the animals there are perfectly healthy.

They are unreleasable. The NOAA says that no cetacean who has been in captivity for over 24 months, or was bred in captivity, is to be released. So there you go!

And I am going to see if he will change it.

Nothing worse than your band going there and learning about why eating sustainable seafood is important, or the conservation of manatees and sea turtles.

Kudos to you for sticking up for the whales!

But forget the manatees, sea turtles, and potential inspiration that those kids would have had to help preserve the oceans.

I went to a similar marine park in Miami.

Nothing about SeaWorld is similar to the abusive, unaccredited Miami Seaquarium. That's insulting to SW.

As well as small zoos.

Yes, because ALL small zoos are evil. No. The zoo I'm a JZK at is small, but our animals are healthy and thriving. Please gain some experience with smaller zoos before issuing sweeping generalizations and judgements.

Personally, I can see where pro-caps are coming from, but they should really do more research and just use common sense. It's obvious, just by looking at marine parks, that it's inhumane to keep these animals captive.

This is what made me mad earlier. See Point Three, please. Be more open-minded and less rude.

Well I told myself I wouldn't make a monstrously huge post again, but oh well...

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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by laika_wolf » Sun Oct 11, 2015 7:36 pm

Wow. I haven't been on wolfquest in over a year and I just got an email saying that someone replied to my old post about Sea World. How did you find this? Was it on the front page still? If so, I'm really sad that this forum has been so inactive. :lol:
Anyways, my views have shifted quite a bit over the past year and 3 months since this was posted. You brought up the point that if someone is against Sea World, then they should be against all captivity. And I agree with that completely! That's why I have decided to never again visit another zoo, aquarium, circus, or any other place that holds undomesticated animals in captivity. I'm also against the breeding of domesticated animals since the rules of kennel clubs are purely for aesthetic and often lead to severe health problems. I do support caring for animals adopted from shelters because they're not going to disappear and, for many of them, they couldn't survive on their own.
I don't think these were my beliefs at the time. And I totally admit that many of my previous views on animal rights were super hypocritical. They totally were. I ruined my mascara while face palming at some of the things I've written on this site. :lol: However, I do agree with my past self on one thing: It's inherently wrong to put a 12,000 pound animal in a chlorine tank.
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by TheSeaWolf » Mon Oct 12, 2015 10:07 am

laika_wolf wrote:Wow. I haven't been on wolfquest in over a year and I just got an email saying that someone replied to my old post about Sea World. How did you find this? Was it on the front page still? If so, I'm really sad that this forum has been so inactive. :lol:
Anyways, my views have shifted quite a bit over the past year and 3 months since this was posted. You brought up the point that if someone is against Sea World, then they should be against all captivity. And I agree with that completely! That's why I have decided to never again visit another zoo, aquarium, circus, or any other place that holds undomesticated animals in captivity. I'm also against the breeding of domesticated animals since the rules of kennel clubs are purely for aesthetic and often lead to severe health problems. I do support caring for animals adopted from shelters because they're not going to disappear and, for many of them, they couldn't survive on their own.
I don't think these were my beliefs at the time. And I totally admit that many of my previous views on animal rights were super hypocritical. They totally were. I ruined my mascara while face palming at some of the things I've written on this site. :lol: However, I do agree with my past self on one thing: It's inherently wrong to put a 12,000 pound animal in a chlorine tank.
Yeah, it's still on the front page. I saw the words "Sea World" and I was like "TIME TO GO DEBATE!!" If anyone else replies, I'll keep it active. Lol I know the feeling of seeing something that you wrote forever ago and being like "Oh...oh lawd...no...*facepalm*" It happens to me when I look at ancient DeviantArt journals of mine. I just want to burn them with fire when I see them.

I would dig into zoo stuff, but that's not what this thread is for. If you would like to discuss it, you could PM me. I have a hard time deciding whether or not hypocrisy or anti-conservation, anti-education AR stuff is worse...I almost prefer to see full-on AR than hypocrisy. At least I don't have to sit through excuses then. But I'm completely anti-animal rights movement.
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Re: Animal Cruelty in SeaWorld

Post by BlueEverest » Thu Oct 29, 2015 6:06 pm

I don't think ocras are whales because whales are mammals while ocras are fish.

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