Orcas In Captivity

1152 Words 5 Pages
Ever since 1961, humans have been removing orcas out of their natural habitats to go to places such as Sea World, where they are forced to perform tricks for people who pay to watch (Blackfish). Unlike orcas in the wild, captive orcas have been known to live shorter lives and go through traumatic experiences. Also, orca captivity has had negative effects on not only the orcas taken captive, but their families too. Due to the negative changes orcas experience from the wild to captivity, orcas should be retained in the wild, shouldn’t be separated from their families, and also should not be held in captivity to perform tricks for visitors.

In The Wild
Orcas in the wild live a better life than their captive counterparts. In the
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In captivity, unlike in the wild, orcas have no freedom, they are without their families, and they are constantly stressed out. According to Corrine Henn, an animal awareness writer, orcas can swim up to one hundred miles in the ocean, whereas in captivity, they would need to swim the perimeter of their tank one thousand nine hundred times in one day to equal one hundred miles (Henn). In addition, PETA, the largest animal rights organization in the world, states that “[i]n the wild, orcas dive up to 1,000 feet, while the tanks that SeaWorld has proposed will only reach 50 feet. That’s 950 feet that they still won’t be able to dive. This is an increase of only 15 feet—which is shorter than the length of a single adult orca—from the current tank depth of a meager 35 feet.” In the tank, orcas are severely limited in what they can do; they cannot swim for very long without turning and also can barely dive underwater. Furthermore, in the tank, orcas constantly listen to filtration systems, pumps, music, fireworks, and people clapping and yelling every day (“Wild vs. Captivity”). Also, the tanks reflect sounds, which makes the noise problem even worse for the orcas (“Wild vs. Captivity”). These tanks are poorly designed for captive orcas and make their lives in captivity a lot worse than most people know it. In addition, most people would usually think that all orcas can fully communicate with each other, but this is not always the case. Leigh Dayton, who has a Ph.D. in scientific innovation, states that orcas speak a number of different dialects, which can be as different as English to Japanese for humans, or as close as regional dialects of the English language (Dayton). Adding to this, two orcas are sometimes put into one tank (or one in a nearby tank) while in captivity that have different dialects which means that they cannot socialize or communicate with each other (Blackfish). Healthy orcas

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