SeaWorld offically ends orca breeding program


SeaWorld Entertainment (NYSE:SEAS) is ending its orca breeding program and phasing out theatrical shows featuring the iconic black and white whales following years of criticism from activists over how the captive animals were said to be treated.”By making this the last generation of orcas in our care and reimagining how guests will experience these attractive animals, we are fulfilling our mission of providing visitors to our parks with experiences that matter”. The change will start in San Diego next year, followed by San Antonio and Orlando in 2019.The backlash against SeaWorld crystalized with the response to the 2013 documentary Blackfish, which made the case that the park’s treatment of Tilikum contributed to the killer whale’s deadly attack on one of its trainers.The director of the documentary “Blackfish” is applauding SeaWorld’s decision to end its orca breeding program. But things will be different there and at its San Diego theme park.However, decreasing revenue from boycotting patrons forced SeaWorld’s hand to announce the end of orca shows.”So today’s announcement is really going to help turn public opinion and make this park something that has the potential to really impact conservation, rehabilitation of marine mammals”, Jarl said.”It’s just the same show from when we were kids”, she said.According to NBC News, SeaWorld is looking at new ways to continue to entertain guests and protect both wild animals and places. Instead of publicly releasing the entire line-up before a concert series starts, SeaWorld Orlando now announces performers one concert at a time, each about a week before the event. The first killer whale in the company’s care was born in a SeaWorld park in 1985.Dr. Naomi Rose, a marine biologist with the Animal Welfare Institute who was an adviser to the film, said SeaWorld’s move was a “monumental and important first step forward in achieving a more humane business model for the company”.“Most of our orcas were born at SeaWorld, and those that were born in the wild have been in our parks for the majority of their lives, ” Manby wrote.”We don’t need all these theatrical ‘tricks, ‘” SeaWorld President Joel Manby said on a conference call with reporters.In a letter sent to the Los Angeles Times about the change, SeaWorld’s CEO said the company is partnering with the Humane Society of the United States. “This year we will end all orca breeding programs – and because SeaWorld hasn’t collected an orca from the wild in nearly four decades, this will be the last generation of orcas in SeaWorld’s care”.The 24 orcas SeaWorld now has are at parks in California, Texas and Florida. SeaWorld Entertainment, which has 12 parks in the US, has already announced plans to end orca displays at its park in San Diego, California after coming under the scrutiny of regulators, USA Today reported. “And so do many of our visitors at SeaWorld“. Alarming discovery: Zika Virus is doing this to fetuses
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