The Orca Project has released a new video that was created by by some incredible friends which reveals the differences between life for killer whale families in the wild and in captivity.
Although we have previously posted ”A Better Way to See Orcas”, which can be seen below, this powerful video-short will change the way the public looks at orca captivity and give them the opportunity to make informed decisions about their next travel/entertainment destination:
We at The Orca Project apologize that this video is no longer available. Due to threats of copyright infringement from another “orca advocacy organization”, we have removed this important and compelling video.
The video was prepared by Leah Lemieux, author of the book Rekindling the Waters, and Lori Marino, Ph.D., neuroscientist at Emory University, who has studied dolphins and whales for over twenty years.
…..Continue Reading for details on orca families that have been torn apart→
This will be a short post from The Orca Project. The centerpiece of the subject matter is shown in the short video below.
We believe “A Better Way to See Orcas” is a pivotal piece of documentation clearly informing people who may have not been aware that these intelligent beings belong in the wild, and not on display in a sensory deprived pool working for their food.
We at The Orca Project apologize that this video is no longer available. Due to threats of copyright infringement from another “orca advocacy organization”, we have removed this important and compelling video.
…..Continue Reading →
When a 4,000 pound (1,815 kg) captive killer whale found himself in the middle of an international custody battle, his case became another in the long line of marine mammal theatrics being played out in courtrooms in the U.S. and abroad.
On September 28, an Ontario Court of Appeal upheld an earlier Superior Court decision ordering MarineLand of Canada to return the 17 foot (5.2 m) male orca Ikaika to SeaWorld in the United States. He was on a breeding loan to the Niagara Falls marine park.
SeaWorld requested termination of the loan contract and asked MarineLand to return Ikaika “Ike” back in December, 2010, citing they were concerned with his “physical and psychological health”. MarineLand officials disagreed with SeaWorld’s assertions as well as the terms and understanding between the two parties. This led to the court battle.
…..Continue Reading for more on the international courtroom battles →
SeaWorld is seeking to clean up its image now that things are not going their way in the case against the OSHA which charges they were negligent in the “Willful” death of veteran trainer Dawn Brancheau.
On Friday, the multi-billion dollar entertainment facility issued a press release, hoping to capitalize on the just released film “Dolphin Tale”, which tells the story of a bottle-nose dolphin named Winter who was rehabilitated at athe Clearwater Marine Aquarium. They were also undoubtedly eager to offset the negative publicity surrounding the court hearing against the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) which was scheduled to conclude on that day. However, the hearing will reconvene in November.
From the SeaWorld press-release:
“The SeaWorld Rescue Team – which also helped with the initial rescue transport of Winter… uses their expertise and creativity every day to devise new ways to rescue, treat and return to nature these extraordinary animals.”
While this may be true of some marine animals (turtles, sea lions, seals, etc) – killer whales and dolphins do not fall into their realm of rescue, unless of course there is a potential for public display and profit. This was evident in SeaWorld’s lax response to a mass stranding of pilot whales in the Florida Keys in early May, 2011. Volunteers and non-profit organizations were on the scene immediately and heroically helped the survivors with every available resource around-the-clock. SeaWorld eventually showed up, and now two of the pilot whales are being cared for at SeaWorld. Their future is uncertain but they will likely be used for breeding purposes to continue the captive population.
The press release continued with this excerpt:
“This commitment extends to animals around the world: The company has contributed more than $50 million to conservation, wildlife rescue and environmental stewardship initiatives and has supported efforts on every continent, as well as operating its own well-respected wildlife rescue program.”
What they don’t state is that SeaWorld operates its rescue program through a non-profit organization called the Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute. This organization relies on public and federal funding which competes with truly non-profit organizations that have orca and dolphin rescues, research and education at the core of their missions. Despite the claim of contributing $50 million to conservation and rescue (over their lifetime) these grants take away money from earnest non-profits such as the Orca Network and many others which run circles around SeaWorld when it comes to true research and education. SeaWorld reportedly had $1.4 Billion in revenue in 2010 yet receives these grants to perform their rescue programs.
In the past 10 years alone, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), the U.S. government oversight agency which provides oversight and guidance on the conservation of marine mammals and endangered species has awarded SeaWorld (and Hubbs-SeaWorld) almost $2 Million dollars in grants. The for-profit SeaWorld continues to take in billions off the backs of killer whales and dolphins in captivity and contributes little to their protection in the wild.
At the same time, SeaWorld is trying to acquire Morgan, a female killer whale rescued in coastal Dutch waters, despite a comprehensive and achievable plan to reintroduce her to the wild. However, the addition of her into the gene pool in the SeaWorld collection, and potential profits, apparently outweigh their claims of “rescue, treat, and release”.
We appreciate all that SeaWorld has done in the past to contribute to the research, education and conservation efforts for the highly complex, intelligent and social mammals such as dolphins and killer whales… but the time has come to evolve from keeping these amazing creatures in captivity for the exploitative entertainment industry.
For more information, please visit this informative article by Cetacean Inspiration: “Seaworld and Conservation”.
For many years, the case has been made that the largest predator of the oceans, killer whales (orcas), should be free from the exploitation of a multi-billion dollar marine mammal entertainment industry which has been permitted to operate under the guise of education and conservation. These intelligent, highly social, amazing beings deserve their freedom, however the popular perception portrayed by theme parks have our government officials and the public thinking otherwise. But the tide is changing and the truth about orca captivity is finally catching-on in public perception and with the media.
Unlike the mis-education perpetuated by the highly profitable aquaria, studies have shown the life expectancies of killer whales in captivity are well below those of their wild counterparts. Despite industry claims of advancements in veterinary care, nutrition and husbandry techniques, killer whales fare much better in the wild… even with the man-made decimation of their habitats. The true focus has since evolved toward education and conservation in the protection orca environments instead of continuing to allow the exploitation of these individuals for lucrative entertainment corporations.
In January, 2011 The Orca Project introduced a paper co-authored by two former SeaWorld trainers, Dr. John Jett and Dr. Jeffrey Ventre titled “Keto and Tilikum Express the Stress of Orca Captivity”. This report dove into many of the detrimental effects of orca captivity and their decrease in life expectancy through new calculations of the Mean Duration of Captivity.
Today, in collaboration with The Orca Project, Dr. Naomi Rose, Senior Scientist at the Humane Society International has released another groundbreaking paper- “Killer Controversy: Why orcas should no longer be kept in captivity” (see it below)
Building on several decades of studies, including a 1995 peer-reviewed paper on the survivorship rates of several captive marine mammal species, the Jett/Ventre report, and now Dr. Rose’s study, the case has been laid-out to show that not only has captive survival rates not improved but they have actually worsened.
Utilizing these reports as well as industry and government documents, the causes of decline in longevity are multi-fold… just as we have presented here at The Orca Project. The stressors associated with captivity are clearly depicted in the Jett/Ventre report as well as our report on orca dental health.
The death of Dawn Brancheau in February, 2010 has also brought the dangers of orca confinement and display to the forefront. It also highlighted the unjust solitary confinement that Tilikum endured for nearly 1 year after killing Dawn, a punishment that did not fit the crime of serving a life of captivity against his will. With dozens of previous incidents between killer whales and trainers leading to injury or death, including the death of trainer Alexis Martinez by a SeaWorld orca in the Canary Islands just 8 weeks prior to the attack in Orlando, Florida, the evidence is clear that orcas do not belong in captivity.
We encourage you to read the report by Dr. Rose which presents the growing body of scientific evidence showing that orcas do not adapt to captivity, including:
Previous analyses using data through 1992 showed that captive orcas have higher mortality rates than wild orcas; new analyses examining data through 2010 confirm that the situation has not improved in the past 18 years, and in fact has worsened. Captivity is, in essence, poor habitat for orcas, causing early death.
- Captive female orcas give birth too young and too often, leading to both high adult and high infant mortality.
- The most common cause of death for captive orcas is infection. Chronic stress may be an important factor in weakening the animals’ immune response.
- Captive orcas have poor dental health compared to wild whales, which may be another factor in their susceptibility to fatal infections.
- Orcas in captivity are more aggressive toward each other than in the wild. Females also behave abnormally toward their calves more often than in the wild.
- Since captive orcas have been publicly displayed, they have seriously threatened the lives and safety of dozens of people, and four people have been killed. However, wild orcas have injured only a handful of people — none seriously — and there are no records, at any time in history, of them killing anyone.
Read the press release introducing Dr. Rose’s paper from The Humane Society International and The Humane Society of The United States, by clicking HERE, and download the complete report “Killer Controversy: Why orcas should no longer be kept in captivity” in PDF format by clicking HERE. The full report can also be seen below:
Since its inception in 2010, The Orca Project has collaborated with some of the world’s top marine mammal experts, caring professionals and individuals from diverse backgrounds. The amazing alliance and friendships born from this endeavor will continue to expand on the groundwork laid out by those before us. We will continue to develop on their work to educate the public and our government oversight agencies about the detrimental effects of keeping killer whales in captivity. We encourage former and present trainers, marine mammal park employees (in the U.S. and abroad), scientists, authors, individuals and the media to contact us at email@example.com to continue this important work. Confidentiality is assured if you wish to remain anonymous.
We’ve moved our updates and information on the SeaWorld vs OSHA hearings to a new page HERE which includes all of the information below, plus coverage of round 2 of the hearings, all of the latest developments, testimony, links, documents, video, etc. And please be sure to follow us on FaceBook and Twitter (@TheOrcaProject) for all the latest news and reports.
Last August, OSHA issued citations to SeaWorld for apparently placing profit above employee safety following the death of Mrs. Brancheau who was brutally killed by Tilikum, a nearly 12,000 pound (5,443 kg) killer whale (Orcinus-orca) on February 24, 2010.
The citations, included fines totaling $75,000 for safety violations including the maximum $70,000 penalty for the “Willful” act of knowingly placing its employees at risk, a charge that has major implications beyond the monetary value, which is not substantial for the multi-billion dollar marine park. The stunning announcement rekindled the ongoing debate of keeping these intelligent, highly-social beings in captivity for entertainment purposes. It has also sparked a growing number of former SeaWorld employees to speak out about the culture of working with orcas and the secrecy that shrouds the marine mammal entertainment industry.
Since its inception in 2010, The Orca Project has collaborated with some of the world’s top marine mammal experts, caring professionals and individuals from diverse backgrounds to cover the debate on orca captivity, the death of Dawn Brancheau and the history and current conditions of Tilikum’s confinement. Below, we’ve highlighted some of our top stories, investigations, interviews and posts from the past year:
- Seeing is Believing: Tilikum’s Lonely Life after Dawn- There has been deep concern for how Tilikum’s isolation may affect the well-being of this intelligent, social animal. After observing Tilly and his caretakers, is SeaWorld living up to its claims of a fullifilling, enriched life?
- SeaWorld Trainer Death Theory Debunked as a Ponytail Tale- Ever since the brutal death of Dawn Brancheau, the media has erroneously cited the marine park’s claim that killer whale Tilikum pulled her into the water by her ponytail. But why is this false theory important to SeaWorld? We present the facts of what really occurred and was observed by witnesses on that day.
- SeaWorld’s Proposed Multi-Million-Dollar Safety Gimmicks Don’t Measure Up- SeaWorld’s announcement that they are spending tens of millions of dollars on new safety devices, draws skepticism from former trainers, marine mammal professionals and journalists.
- Keto and Tilikum Express the Stress of Orca Captivity- Former SeaWorld trainers Dr. John Jett and Dr. Jeffrey Ventre provides detailed observations, powerful photos and strong statistical calculations, for a look behind the scenes of Marine Parks and their ability to provide environments adequate for keeping captive killer whales alive.
- Killer Whale Tilikum Returns to SeaWorld Shows After 3rd Death- a little more than a year after brutally killing veteran orca trainer Dawn Brancheau, Tilikum returnes to performances.
- The Case Against Killer Whale Captivity- in collaboration with The Orca Project, Dr. Naomi Rose, Senior Scientist at the Humane Society has released another groundbreaking paper detailing why orcas should no longer be kept in captivity.
Also, in revealing exclusive interviews with The Orca Project, former SeaWorld trainers expose the facts behind the secretive marine mammal entertainment industry, trainer injuries and deaths as well as the truth behind Killer Whales in captivity:
- Exclusive Interview #1: Former SeaWorld trainer John Jett PhD talks Tilikum with T.O.P.
- Exclusive Interview #2: Former SeaWorld trainer Carol Ray talks orca safety & separation with T.O.P.
- Exclusive Interview #3: Former SeaWorld trainer Samantha Berg and the Perils of Orca Captivity (part 1) (part 2)
For a collection of documents from the investigation of SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau’s death including autopsy report, Orange County Sheriff’s Office Investigative Report, USDA-APHIS and OSHA freedom of information act documents, click HERE.
And be sure to visit the following stories on the SeaWorld investigation by Tim Zimmermann of Outside Magazine:
- The Killer in the Pool- When a 12,000-pound orca named Tilikum dragged his SeaWorld trainer into the pool and drowned her, it was the third time the big killer whale had been involved in a death. Many observers wondered why the animal was still working. But some experts, knowing the psychological toll of a life spent in captivity, have posed a darker question: Was it human error, or can a killer whale choose to kill?
- Diary of a Killer Whale- Tim Zimmermann digs a little deeper into some of the questions surrounding the tragedy of Tilikum and Dawn Brancheau.
- Blood in the Water- On December 24, 2009, a 6,600-pound orca killed trainer Alexis Martínez at a marine park in the Canary Islands. Two months later, trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by an orca at SeaWorld Orlando. With the OSHA trial on trainer safety at SeaWorld Orlando starting September 19, Tim Zimmermann asks: Should Martínez’s death have served as a warning about the lethal potential of killer whales being trained for our entertainment?
We encourage former and present trainers, marine mammal park employees (in the U.S. and abroad), scientists, authors, individuals and the media to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to continue this important work. Confidentiality is assured if you wish to remain anonymous.
SeaWorld vs. OSHA Day 1 (Monday, September 19, 2011):
SeaWorld employees were litteraly brought to tears during day 1 of the SeaWorld vs. OSHA hearing:
Reports from the Sanford hearings include:
Safety of SeaWorld trainers questioned in OSHA hearing- Jason Garcia of The Orlando Sentinel reports in the Sentinel’s sister newspaper the Chicago Tribune that OSHA attorneys will question the “ponytail theory“.
Hearing begins in death of killer whale trainer- CNN reports on the opening of the SeaWorld vs. OSHA hearing.
Video: Death at Sea World: Author David Kirby and former SeaWorld trainer Carol Ray on AC360 with Anderson Cooper on CNN talk about the brutal killing of Dawn Brancheau and the false “PonyTail Theory”. CNN requested SeaWorld to appear on the broadcast. They refused.
Death at SeaWorld — Should Videotapes of the Killing be Released?- David Kirby, author of the soon-to-be released book “Death at SeaWorld – Shamu and the Dark Side of Killer Whales in Captivity” (St. Martin’s Press) discusses the upcoming battle to show the underwater video of Dawn’s horrific death in the Huffington Post.
Dawn Brancheau’s SeaWorld Death Leads To Fight Over Safety Citation- Mike Schneider reports in the Huffington Post
The question: Whose fault was the death of Dawn Brancheau- Michael Mountain of ZOE Nature reports on the testimony of day 1.
SeaWorld vs. OSHA Day 2 (Tuesday, September 20, 2011):
Fredy Herrera, a security officer at SeaWorld Orlando who was working at Shamu Stadium on the day Brancheau was killed, testified that it appeared to him she was pulled in by her left arm, as we have reported HERE at The Orca Project.
SeaWorld guard: Killer whale appeared to pull trainer underwater by her arm, not hair- Jason Garcia of The Orlando Sentinel reports on Day 2 of the SeaWorld vs OSHA hearing.
Ponytail theory takes another dive- Michael Mountain of ZOE Nature reports on the testimony of day 2.
A brief report on NBC News in Tampa, Florida regarding the “Ponytail Theory”:
SeaWorld vs. OSHA Day 3 (Wednesday, September 21, 2011):
The morning began with a report on NBC’s Today Show, continuing the covereage of yesterday’s testimony which essentially puts the “ponytail theory” to rest, including highlights with The Orca Project’s Colleen Gorman. Watch the Today Show video by clicking HERE.
Today’s testimony included former SeaWorld Animal Curator Chuck Tompkins discussing previous killer whale/trainer incidents. Under examination by OSHA attorney John Black, it was discovered that SeaWorld has not kept accurate records of incidents. The following help disclose SeaWorld’s failures:
Not all whale aggression made it into SeaWorld’s incident log, lawyers say- Jason Garcia of the Orlando Sentinel reports on today’s testimony describing the ommissions in SeaWorld’s incident reports.
SeaWorld Scrutinized Over Whale Incident Reports- A mid-day report from Orlando, Florida’s NBC affiliate WESH 2 looks at todays’s testimony on “incident reports”. Read their story and watch the video (including comments from The Orca Project) which shows that SeaWorld has side-stepped safety issues.
… and video of the 2006 attack on trainer Kenneth Peters at SeaWorld SanDiego was played in the courtroom. Author David Kirby dicusses this with CNN’s Anderson Cooper on AC360. (click HERE to watch the interview)
When orcas attack- Michael Mountain of ZOE Nature reports on the testimony of day 3.
SeaWorld vs. OSHA Day 4 (Thursday, September 22, 2011):
SeaWorld trainer Jan Topoleski took the stand today to describe what he witnessed. Topoleski was acting as the “safety spotter” for Dawn during her interaction with Tilikum during the “Dine with Shamu” show and he reports to have witnessed the initial take-down. His recollections today seem to differ than those originally reported to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office regarding the ”ponytail theory“. His report on what occurred that day has been previously been called into question based on all other eyewitness reports of how Dawn was pulled into the water, including SeaWorld employees and park visitors. The Connell family, who captured the infamous final images of Dawn and Tilikum on video have also previously reported that Topoleski was not watching when Dawn was pulled in and they had to alert him that Dawn was taken down. You can read the Connell family’s reports to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office in our collection of documents HERE.
Additionally, emotional testimony was given by Shana Groves, one of the first SeaWorld trainers to report to the scene, and Dr. David Duffus, a killer-whale expert and professor at the University of Victoria in British Columbia — to buttress their contention that trainers cannot be expected to accurately predict a whale’s behavior at all times. It was also announced by Judge Welsch that the hearing will not be able to conclude on Friday (day 5) as anticipated and there will need to be an extension of the hearing, which may take place next week, or even in October or November. Today’s testimony is covered here:
Spotter saw SeaWorld trainer struggle to free her hair- Jason Garcia of the Orlando Sentinel reports on today’s events.
Author David Kirby appeared again tonight on CNN’s AC360 with Anderson Cooper to discuss today’s testimony and Jan Topoleski’s apparent conflicting accounts of Dawn being taken into the water by her ponytail. Watch the CNN video HERE.
It’s still about the ponytail- Michael Mountain of ZOE Nature reports on the testimony of day 4.
SeaWorld vs. OSHA Day 5 (Friday, September 23, 2011)
Today, Judge Ken Welsch announced the hearings will reconvene on November 15. It was originally scheduled to conclude today, however it’s anticipated that there will be an additional week of testimony. Dr. David Duffus, professor at the University of Victoria in British Columbia returned to the stand for cross-examination by SeaWorld attorneys and said he was alarmed by how close Brancheau was to Tilikum when he grabbed her, stating “I don’t want to second-guess an experienced trainer, but I would not, given my experience with killer whales, … be that close to Tilikum. No way on Earth”. Day 5 coverage below:
SeaWorld-OSHA hearing in recess until mid-November- Jason Garcia of the Orlando Sentinel reports on today’s events.
Official says SeaWorld put whale trainers at risk- By Barbara Liston (Reuters) – A government safety official said on Friday that Florida’s SeaWorld knew it was putting trainers at risk by letting them interact with a 12,000-pound killer whale named Tilikum.
“If you end up in the water with Tilikum, you’re going to die”- Michael Mountain of ZOE Nature reports on the testimony of day 5, including the “Tilly Talk” that’s given to all new orca trainers at SeaWorld Orlando.
There are so many more developments occuring behind the scenes here at The Orca Project and we will keep you posted as information and events unravel. November should prove to be eye-opening and and a great step forward in ending the unecessary and unjust practice of orca captivity.
Typically at The Orca Project we don't solicit funding or donations, however, today is a different case. We are sending out an all points bulletin and plead for donations for Orkacoalitie.nl and her legal fees. You can go to their CrowdFundingPage and donate there. Currently, the legal team and association are shy around €13,00o Euros, or $18,500 US dollars. We are asking that you donate anything and everything you can to this very time sensitive request. Her case will be in court, tomorrow, August 3, 2011. Below we have posted a letter from her attorney and comments straight out of Free Morgan, as well as Ingrid Visser's, of Orca Research Trust, report. <-- Click here.
“A court case is being held tomorrow – Aug 3 – with regards to Morgan the orca currently held in the Netherlands. CITES has granted a permit for this young female to be moved to Loro Parque, Spain. Groups/individuals are trying to stop this transfer. Dr Ingrid Visser/ Terry M. Hardie have written a report on why this whale is a good candidate for release, it can be found at this link.”
Urgent plea we received from Free Morgan, "We have the court hearing this Wednesday, the 3rd of August. Strangely enough, the ministry has accepted the request to transport Morgan to Tenerife a few days ago, didn't even wait for the hearing. To us this shows just how corrupt and tight the connections between the Dolfinarium and the Ministry are... Our lawyer has already appealed against this permit, and there is a very good chance this permit has to be revoked. We are filing the suit against the ministry, and we hope the judge will see that the way things have gone just aren't right. Our lawyer really feels that we stand a good chance in this case, I will copy-paste a letter he wrote at the end of this email...
The attorney wrote this letter because the legal fees have risen tremendously, and we are now €13K euros short! It’s just so frustrating, if we stop now because of lack of funding, ALL our work as well as that of all the people in the Free Morgan Group will have been in vain! ~ Free Morgan.
Letter from Free Morgan’s Attorney:There are some developments in the Morgan case we thought you would beinterested in. We have also added a request related to our current legalcosts at the end of this email, which we hope you are able to consider.
It turns out (not totally unexpected) that the place where thedolphinarium wants to move Morgan to, Loro Parque on Tenerife, has 4 Killer Whales on display which are owned by SeaWorld. There is a long history of mis-management, withholding of proper care to the animals and hiring of ‘unqualified’trainers. We are in contact with Suzanne M. Allee, a former employee ofthe center who has become a whistle blower on the issues at Loro Parque.This also links in with previous legal cases taken on by Naomi Rose whofought the case for the orca’s at the facility from the US. It isbecoming clear that the location at Loro Parque might only be atemporary one for Morgan as nothing stands in the way of SeaWorld takingher and/or her newborns to another facility in the US, as they have donewith other animals from this facility in the past.
We currently have a number of people working all hours to prepare forthe court case. Ingrid Visser is still in The Netherlands and workingflat-out to prepare for an appeal which will be submitted by Monday aswell as for the full lawsuit which will be before the courts on 3rdAugust. I have attached the final version of Ingrid’s report. Our lawyerhas also been working over-time and through the weekend to get us readyfor the case. The scale of the case in relation to internationaltreaties, regulations and Dutch law makes it especially quite unique andrequired the law firm to do extensive additional research.
Jean Michel Cousteau has also voiced his support for the campaign and heis expected to go public with this (and talk with media about thecampaign) next week. A growing number of marine scientists, includingPaul Spong, Howard Garrett, Naomi Rose, Susan Berta, Michael Kundu andthe WDCS, have all sent letters of recommendation to our legal team inresponse to Ingrid’s report.
It seems unlikely but there is a theoretical possibility that theMinistry decides not to wait for the court proceedings and a judge’sruling on the matter and issue a permit next week regardless. This couldmean that there are a number of days where the dolphinarium will havethe opportunity to move her out of the country before a judge is able toblock it. The strange thing is that how things stand at the moment, thiswould be outrageous but the dolphinarium wouldn’t be breaking Dutch lawin doing so.
To ensure this does not happen we have a large network of activists fromaround the country as well as Germany and Belgium to come to thedolphinarium as soon as there are any signs of them preparing fortransport. We currently have local activists spotting at the facilitynumerous times a day and an ‘alarm list’ is in place to ensure a swiftresponse. We will then attempt to block the transport for as long as wecan while our legal team and lawyer correspond with the local counciland police commander to stop the transport from happening until the casehas come before a judge.
The media attention is already gathering pace in the run-up to the casegoing to court. A major TV network will be broadcasting a program thisTuesday with an exclusive interview from Ingrid as well as others. Themain Dutch press agency has issued two separate stories this week alone,which have been picked up and published by every major newspaper in thecountry. The interesting thing is that most journalists tell us that thedolphinarium is fed up and unwilling to cooperate with any further mediarequests about Morgan. In a recent interview the spokesperson of thedolphinarium stated that they are getting very tired with the activiststaking up all their time and they kindly requested that the OrcaCoalition would refrain from seeking the injunction and starting thelawsuit.
The campaign has come a very long way and we are confident that this isone of the best opportunities a captive orca has ever had of regainingher freedom thanks to the tireless effort of both activists andscientists, working together in an effective campaign.
In recent weeks (with our legal team working overtime) our legal costshave risen and we are now with a €13,000 deficit to our legal/campaigncosts. If there would be a possibility to request a contributionfrom …………………………… towards these costs, it wouldbe much appreciated. We hope to hear from you.—————————————————————
Please go to http://www.freemorgan.nl/ and click on the donation button, which takes you to PayPal, where you can send money. Please send whatever you can. Please do it now. Your money will be used immediately to help cover the legal costs of opposing the CITES permit to export Morgan to Spain (Lora Parque in Tenerife, i.e. Sea World) which the Harderwijk Dolfinarium now holds in its hands. This may well be a last chance for Morgan to avoid permanent captivity. Sea World is giddy with the opportunity it has to expand its genetic "breeding" pool.
Again, we ask that you can do what you can, and thank you from The Orca Project.————————————————————————————————UPDATE on Morgan! “Morgan is to stay at the dolphinarium until more evidence/research is done – good news from the judge. Its not ideal that she has to stay in such a small tank however, but for the moment, she’s not facing a life in captivity.” ~ Marine Connection. ~That being said, we need to still ask that you donate what you can to her legal fund. This fight is far from over. And until she gets rehabilitated and her family is found, this saga will continue.