The Death Of A Killer Whale Essay

1461 Words Mar 11th, 2016 6 Pages
On february 21, 1991 Tilikum a killer whale committed his first murder while in captivity. Today tilikum is still performing. Tilikum was caught In november of 1983, at only two years old he was thirteen feet long and was torn away from his family and home. Held captive all he could do was swim in small circles and float aimlessly at the surface of the water, far away from the ocean where he had swum a hundred miles a day alongside his family. Food was withheld from him as a training technique, and he regularly endured painful attacks by two dominant female orcas. He was forced to perform every hour, eight times a day, seven days a week, the constant stress and exhaustion gave him stomach ulcers. Like many animals tilikum has no control over his life. Captivity causes animals to lash out from stress and the way the animals are treated raises moral questions.
One might think that zoos, aquariums, and marine parks, are safe havens for animals but they are actually the complete opposite. Whales suffer tremendously from being in captivity, they are cramped, bored, and lonely. Captivity is exceedingly different from their natural homes, Halverstadt states that while in captivity “animals are often prevented from doing most of the things that are natural and important to them” (Halverstadt) for example: swimming, choosing partners, and being with their family, this alone raises moral questions. For killer whales like tilikum it is difficult to adapt to life in captivity. In…

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