The topic of killer whales being kept in captivity has recently resurfaced over the past few years on the media after the quiet recently released documentary “Blackfish”, which points out the dark and hunting side of orcas Whales being in captivity at Theme Parks and Attractions such as sea world. Though often seen as fierce killing machines, Orca whales, mostly known as killer whales, are much more different than most people think. In some ways these curious creatures are quite similar to humans. Many people are highly impressed by these magical whales when they see them perform in marine parks such as SeaWorld. What most people don’t understand is that the life of the orca whale is not as great as it might seem. There is a lot of evidence that proves that captive life will never be acceptable especially for killer whales.
There is no doubt that life in captivity for any type of animal could ever be compared to life in the wild.Killer whales should never have been cramped into tiny confined tanks in theme parks, there is simply far from enough space for an animal that can grow to 8 meters in length. In the wild orcas dive up to 1,000 feet but in captivity they can only dive up to as little ad 50 feet. In the wild killer whales feed on sea birds, squid, octopuses, sea turtles, sharks, rays and fish, but in captivity they only get fish and this is not good for there diet as they are ginormous apex predators and must consume a lot more food and also more of a variety of help there diet. Killer whales are extremely social creatures therefore they live in groups called pods. One pod of orcas can have anywhere from 10 to 50 members but in captivity they normally have 6 at the most, all different places.
Killer whales have been known to live up to 30 years. In captivity the orcas life expectancies is 15 years but not one orca has ever lasted longer than 12 years. When a theme park like SeaWorld gets a new killer whale the dominant male or female may attempt to seriously injure the new comer as it would be to show them who’s the boss. Have you ever been to see an orca show before? And if you have, you would most likely have seen the scares and scratches on the whales. These marks are called rake marks and they occur when 2 or more orcas have been fighting over dominance.
All captive male and most female killer whales have a dorsal fin collapse. A dorsal fin collapses is when the dorsal fin of a killer whale falls partly or completely to the right or left side of the orca. It is normally caused due to stress, cramped spaces in the tank and unnatural diet.
A dorsal fin collapses could also be a sign of an unhealthy or injured orca.