Essay on Captive Orcas Killer Whales

Essay on Captive Orcas Killer Whales

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Though often seen as fierce killing machines, Orca whales, more commonly known as killer whales, are much different. In some ways, these mysterious creatures are much like humans. Many people are fascinated by these whales when they see them perform in marine parks such as SeaWorld. What most people don’t realize is that the life of these whales is not as great as it may seem. There is much evidence that proves captive life will never be adequate. There is no doubt that life in captivity is no match for life in the wild.
Orcas exhibit unnatural behaviors and aggressive tendencies in captivity that do not occur in the wild. In captivity, orcas have been known to show aggressive tendencies resulting in injury and even death. While there are very few cases of wild orcas attacking humans, none of which have ended in death, dozens of injuries and 4 deaths have been perpetrated by captive orcas (Rose, 8). In 2012, SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau was drowned by a whale named Tilikum (Cronin, 1). Dawn had been working with Tilikum for years. In most every case of aggression towards people there has been a bond between the victim and the whale (Should Dolphinariums, 1). If not an act of personal vengeance, these actions must be a response to captive life. “Living in an unnatural habitat creates unnatural behaviors” (Awesome Orcas, 4). The limited activities in captivity affect how they behave (KWIC, 2). On top of showing aggression towards trainers, captive Orcas have been known to refuse to eat, induce self harm, and also show aggression towards the other whales (Awesome Orcas, 2&4). Captive Orcas are frequently incompatible resulting in aggression between and injury of the whales while such aggression is rarely observed in the wild (Ro...


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...N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Apr. 2014. .
Rose, N. A. 2011. Killer Controversy: Why Orcas Should No Longer Be Kept in Captivity. Humane Society International and The Humane Society of the United States, Washington, D.C. 16 pp.
"Should dolphinariums be banned?." Should dolphinariums be banned?. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Apr. 2014. .
Gorman, James. "Smart, Social and Erratic in Captivity." The New York Times. The New York Times, 29 July 2013. Web. 7 Apr. 2014. .
“Ten Fast Facts About Captive Orcas and Dolphins.” bornfreeUSA.org. Born Free USA. 7 April 2014. http://www.bornfreeusa.org/facts.php?p=2688&more=1.
Blackfishmovie. Director: Gabriela Cowperthwaite. Magnolia Pictures, 2013. DVD.

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