(Blackfish). Killer whales in the wild are aggressive towards each other just as they are to humans, in 1989 an accident involving two whales: Kandu and Corky resulted in Kandu bleeding to death. (Kirby 2) this would have never happened if the whales had the enough space they needed to separate from each other. Contrastingly, killer whales in the wild are more peaceful toward each other and humans. There is only one accident of an orca biting someone in the wild.
The unnatural conditions stresses the killer whales out. The attacks on the trainers are due to stress in animals forced into miserable, unnatural conditions. These enclosure are nothing like the wild and the different sounds in the enclosures can affect the whales. ”There concrete enclosures also reflect sounds, so a poorly designed enclosure can make artificial noises. Echolocation is rarely used, as a tank offers no novelties or challenges to explore” (Wild vs. Captivity).
There have been multiple incidents at SeaWorld when killer whales have attacked people. The most popular killer whale attack is the death of Dawn Brancheau by Tilikum, the largest male orca captive at SeaWorld Orlando. This was just one out of three deaths that Tilikum was involved in. He also played a part in the deaths of trainer, Keltie Lee Byrne, and park visitor Daniel Dukes. An autopsy completed by Dr. Joshua Stephany, a medical examiner, determined the injuries Brancheau had sustained after Tilikum had pulled her into the pool.
In the documentary Blackfish, two women recount the story of a Sealand trainer, Keltie Byrne, falling into a pool of orcas and ultimately paying the cost of her own life. These women and an entire crowd of people watched in horror as Tilikum, one of the orcas, pulled her to the bottom of the pool and all three of the orcas took turns tossing her around until she drowned. Since then, orcas have been viewed as dangerous and lethal. However, this is just not the case. These majestic animals are gentle and at times playful in their natural habitat.
Before I begin, I would like to let my viewers know that my credibility on the subject of captive orcas is not a professional one. I am merely someone who opposes the idea of captive orcas. I am also someone who has done some research and believes in the freedom and relocation of orcas to sea pens. For my persuasive project, I decided to create a piece of visual art to express my point. I want to show my audience, anyone on social media, the harsh life of an orca in places like Seaworld. My visual art is based on a meme called What People Think I Do/ What I Really Do. As you can see from my visual piece and other examples of this meme on the internet, this meme provides six different points of views from people on one subject. The points of views I used were of that of a friend, mother, an orca trainer, the CEO of Seaworld, and an orca. Each view illustrates what a specific individual thinks the subject does based on the individual’s personality, relation, and view of the subject.
Orcas are incredibly smart, so the mother orcas would swim away from where the herding was happening. As a result to this, SeaWorld began releasing planes that would fly over the sea and find the mothers, because the orcas had to come up for air eventually. They would throw bombs into the water, so the orcas would be forced to go into nets. One of the whales, named Tilikum, who recently died in January of 2017, was kidnapped from the ocean at the young age of two. A man named Ted Griffin, who helped capture the whales, killed a mother whale in front of her daughter, to later be named Shamu; the first performing whale at SeaWorld.
These whales are unpredictable and dangerous because they are aggravated as shown in the film; they need to be kept free in the wild. We can either stop capturing and training whales, or people will continue to be injured and even killed. This is an example of the either/or logical fallacy, and it is proven in the film. The documentary, Blackfish, is jam packed full of arguments
Tilikum was not the only orca mentioned in the documentary but since he is well known (because of SeaWorld) caught they eye of many. Former Sealand trainers interviewed say that the park’s female killer whales would aggressively gang up on Tilikum especially when they were confined in a 20-foot-by- 30-foot pool overnight (Halverstadt). Aggressive behaviors has led to three deaths by Tilikum. Many say that this behavior comes from a aggressive side of Tilikum that is a side that doesn’t want to hurt anyone but has such a anger because he is being held captive. To be taken out of your water and away from your normal everyday living is very disturbing but what causes lots of emotions to go up is when we see that orcas are getting separated from other orcas they have lived with their entire lives or even birthed.
For the characters in Moby Dick, they have trouble objectively understanding the white whale. Ahab believes Moby Dick represents evil, while Ishmael fails to determine scientifically the whale’s fundamental nature. Ahab sees the whale as a manifestation of that is wrong in the world and accepts that he must destroy this symbolic evil. Ishmael does not understand the meaning behind Ahab’s quest and his purpose to kill the whale as he sees whales as peaceful creatures. Ishmael states, “And thus, though surrounded by circle upon circle of consternations and affrights, did these inscrutable creatures at the centre freely and fearlessly indulge in all peaceful concernments; yea, serenely revelled in dalliance and delight” (Melville 433).
This quote shows the dangers of whaling because it is common for men to be injured at sea. Whales are enormous creatures whos instinct is to fight for their lives if they are in danger, leading them to cause destruction on ships and kill the men who hunt them. Once the whale is dead, the task of bringing the whale towards the ship is even harder. The crew works six hour shifts until the body is processed, taking days to finish depending on weather or size of whale. “Trying out a whale could take as long as three days.
Blackfish written by Gabriela Cowperthwaite. From the start attraction at Sealand of the Pacific in 1969, the aquarium grew attention for their orcas that would perform. Years later a two year old whale was captured and arrived in 81’. His name was Tilikum, coming in at two years old and 4,000 pounds. How do you go about taking orcas out of their setting, changing how they feel, and go about certain lies of how situations occurred?
How can anyone look at the whale crying and think that is morality because it is not. Whale ate one of the trainers. Tilikum is responsible for the deaths of 3 individuals, including a top killer whale trainer, Dawn Brancheau. Blackfish shows the devastating consequences of keeping such intelligent and sentient creatures in captivity. They knew Tilikum was dangerous because in his profile information it states, “Sometimes lunging toward control trainer” 70 plus killer whale trainer accidents but no one talks about them.
When the two sides come together, the argument boils down to one major point, should we “Free Willy?” Those who side with the whales, whether their reasons be emotional or defended with welfare standards, feel that the whales should be released back into the wild or into private coves3. The opposing side makes valid arguments against the release of the currently captive whales. Currently captive whales were either removed from the wild at a young age, albeit in a cruel way, or they were bred in captivity11. The point in discussing this issue is not to address the cruelty of taking an animal from the wild, or to argue whether or not breeding programs are successful or appropriate. What needs to be addressed regarding the release of captive whales is their survivability in the wild6. Many killer whales are bred in captivity now, and thus have depended on humans for the entirety of their lives7. If a captive bred whale were released into the wild, it is likely that he or she would approach humans which could be dangerous for both the human and the whale. Captive bred killer whales would also likely have difficulty hunting, as their food was always provided for them by humans.
The monk seals are a rare tropical animal that lives on the Caribbean and the Hawaiian Islands. Monk seals live in warm waters and spend about two-thirds of their time at sea. However, they also spend time on land as they breed and carry-out their “pups.” Coral reefs provide the seal as a great habitat for them to dive, swim, and for food such as fish. It may seem that monk seals spend most of their time at sea, but they also love to rest on shore on the beaches. From resting and birthing to nursing newborn seals, the seals try their best to survive. Why are these animals extinct, then?