It is mean to keep animals [in captivity] but what better choice does the animal kingdom have ["Sea World Orca Attack on Trainer Demonstrates Human Cruelty," usnews.com]? Of course these gigantic things are miserable in that tank. The problem is that the only people on the planet that care about these type of animals are the type of people that would work at a place like SeaWorld. These animals and these types of shows are the only thing standing between that species and total apathy on the part of the public. I agree, these animals get screwed but they are just essentially taking one for the team. Those kids that sit in awe of those shows are the same children who grow up and dedicate their lives to saving, protecting and preserving them. If no one cares or knows of these animals, if no one has any affinity for these animals, who will work to ensure that they have a place in this planet's future?
Comment by Steve Utrup of MI
Thank you for writing this story. I could not agree with you more. SeaWorld keeps animals in captivity for the duration of their lives. It is so sad that these animals can never roam the oceans, hunt for food, or do anything that they were born to do. All of this for us to watch some silly tricks that these whales never would have done in the wild. This is not cute and is not fair to these precious creations. SeaWorld needs to shut down for good.
Comment by Katie Anne of IL
My heart goes out to the family [of the trainer], but you have to know this could happen. Its a job risk when you work with wild [animals]. I do not think we should blame the orca for doing what comes natural. We should close these parks. I agree its nice to go to the zoo and see the animals close. I like the show at SeaWorld but it shouldn't be at the animals expense. How would people feel if they were in a cage the size of a closet with people staring at you for years. Its stressful, anyone would go insane!
Comment by Jeannie G. of FL
You have not been able to take marine mammals from the wild since the 1970's, so most the animals in captivity were born there. You want to talk about cruelty? Cruelty is releasing an animal into the wild that cant even catch live fish! And suggesting that families take a whale watching trip instead? Those can be just as cruel and invasive. And I'm sorry, but YouTube is just not the same as seeing it in person. Lastly, [it has been said] killer whales got their name from Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest that would call them whale killers, because they were amazed that they could kill whales. Somewhere along the lines, the name got switched. Those close to these amazing animals call them orcas because of the negative connotation that killer has.
Comment by Emily of CA
If we didn't have some species in captivity they would be extinct. Education about animals and habitats is important to saving animals and habitats. Or would you prefer we just let them all disappear? How's that for cruelty? It's not a black and white issue. Most trainers love their animals and are in the field to protect and save them via education and care.
Comment by Alicia of NH