There is a difference between this

and this

the difference being that one is a circus with little to no stimulation and the other is an enclosure that has made an effort to be like the animals natural environment. 

Animals in zoos aren’t made to preform and if it is a good zoo a lot of effort is made in making the enclosure a good environment for the animal.

  • what she says: i'm fine
  • what she means: i'm crying because tilikum died as miserable as he lived in this cement tank but i can't tell you because you're a hypocrite and you actually don't care about animal cruelty so you'll probably call me crazy and change the topic to something unimportant

This is Una. She is currently staying at SeaWorld Orlando’s manatee rehabilitation center in one of our critical care pools. The white slatted floor is a hydraulic false bottom which can be raised in order to bring the animals up out of the water for medical treatment with minimal stress. Thanks to the tracking and observation efforts of the Manatee Rescue and Rehabilitation Partnership, we know quite a few details about her life. 

This isn’t her first time at SeaWorld. She was rescued as an orphaned calf in 2003, weighing in at 170lbs. At a weight of 980lbs, she was released at Blue Springs State Park with a few other manatees in 2006. She has been seen with a calf of her own, which is very exciting. However, she also suffered from at least one boat strike. She recovered and was left with five propeller scars on her back. Around 90% of manatees have wounds from boat strikes. The scars are used by scientists to identify individuals. Eventually, Una shed her tracking device but was still spotted regularly and easily recognized by the “A5” ID marking on her tail. In late November of 2016, she was discovered to be severely entangled. Both of her pectoral flippers were tightly wrapped in monofilament fishing line which had cut deeply into the tissue almost to the bone. This is what happens when people toss tangled up fishing line overboard or just let wads of it blow away. Please recycle monofilament fishing line properly.

 If you’d like to visit Una during her recovery, come see the Manatee Rehabilitation Area inside SeaWorld Orlando adjacent to the sea turtle habitat. The park is currently caring for 18 manatees. An adult manatee can eat around 200lbs of wet vegetation per day, and the little orphans are bottle fed specialized formula every two hours around the clock. Rescued patients need radiographs, ultrasounds, endoscopies, daily medications, tube feedings, wound care, and complicated surgical prodecures. SeaWorld of Orlando, Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, Miami Seaquarium, and the Jacksonville Zoo are the only facilites permited by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service as designated manatee hospitals. Your visit funds the care of these sick and injured manatees and other rescued wildlife.

The Florida manatee was recently reclassified as “Threatened” (Previously “Endangered”), but the species is far from recovered. They still need all of the protection and support we can provide. “Not endangered” does not mean “not in danger”. If you are a Florida resident, please always vote for legislation that protects and benefits manatees. You can learn more about the Manatee Rescue and Rehabilitation Partnership here: public.wildtracks.org

10 Reasons Why Orca Whales Should NOT be at Seaworld (Or Any Marine Park)

  1. In the wild, orcas swim up to 100 miles a day. They are confined into a small tank in captivity. 
  2. Their collapsed dorsal fins (pictured above) are a sign of an unhealthy whale. All male orcas in captivity have a collapsed dorsal fin. Less than 1% of orcas have this condition in the wild.
  3. Orcas do not live up to their nickname “killer whale”. There has not been one incident of an orca killing a human in the wild. However, in captivity, orcas have killed 3 humans and injured 151 reported injury incidences.
  4. On average, orcas live up to 50 years old in the wild. Some females have been reported to live 80-100 years old. Seaworld’s average orca life span is 13 years old.
  5. Family is important to orcas. In the wild, their pods include generations upon generations of their family. Marine parks do not keep their families together. In fact, babies are taken from their mothers. This is psychologically traumatizing to the whales. 
  6. Whale fights are common in the tanks because they are not in their pods and they are, literally, mentally ill. In a tank, whales can’t flee from fights like they can in the wild. These whales get brutally injured and sometimes killed by other whales in the tank.
  7. Pods have their own languages. In a tank with other whales who have different languages. Imagine living with somebody who speaks a different language with you and you cannot use hand motions. Frustrating right?
  8. Not only are the tanks in marine parks WAY too small for this wild animal, in the wild, marine mammals live in a habitat full of MANY other marine plants and animals. In captivity, they live in a cement, chlorinated tank.
  9. Since 1961, 141 whales have been captured. 125 of these whales have died.
  10. The brain of an orca is 4 times larger than the human brain. It has been confirmed their intelligence matches to ours, if not more.

Just imagine living in cement room with a few other people who don’t speak your language. Imagine not knowing if you will ever see your family again. Imagine being forced to do performances for others and being fed one thing for the rest of your life. Imagine being confined in a cement room when there is a whole world out there to explore.

So, how can you help? It’s easy! boycott sea world. Without the revenue, they are forced to shut down their business. Also, education is important. Remind the public of what is going on. 

Before the 1960′s, when the TV series Flipper became popular, trained sea creatures such as dolphins were a very rare occurrence. Richard “Ric” O’Barry was a dolphin trainer at Miami Seaquarium and helped to capture five wild dolphins that would be trained to star in Flipper. He carried this on for 10 years until Kathy, who was the main dolphin to star in Flipper, died in his arms; he strongly believes she committed suicide when she didn’t resurface for air. It was this one event that completely changed his stance on what he was doing. He suddenly realised that imprisoning and training these beautiful and intelligent creatures for human entertainment was abhorrent. On Earth Day of 1970, Ric founded The Dolphin Project which is an organisation dedicated to educating people about the plight of dolphins in captivity. This organisation rescues and rehabilitates dolphins and releases them back to the wild. As well as this, Ric leads an international effort to stop the hunting of dolphins and the trafficking of dolphins to theme parks such as Sea World. He has written two books: Behind the Dolphin Smile and To Free a Dolphin, and also appeared in the documentary, The Cove.