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*banner photo courtesy of NOAA. An orca pod swims by the southwest side of San Juan Island in the Salish Sea, Washington state about a mile south of Lolita’s proposed retirement center at Kanaka Bay.

The Orca Project Corp is a small but effective 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, collaborating with some of the world’s top marine mammal experts and caring professionals from diverse backgrounds, working to change the public’s attitude and government supervision of marine mammals in captivity through research, investigation and education. We are committed to providing the public with a look behind the scenes of the marine mammal captivity/entertainment industry, explore the legal and ethical issues of keeping orcas in captivity and to keep pressure on our government oversight agencies to enforce and improve animal welfare regulations.

Our Website and Blog is a place where ideas and information will be shared to raise awareness about the captivity and exploitation of orcas. It was created to provide an outlet for individuals to present facts and insight into the world of orca captivity, and for readers to participate in a healthy, constructive debate on the issues. It is not our desire to overly moderate the discussions; however,comments that are deemed to be personal in nature, abusive, obscene, defamatory, false or misleading will be deleted. Let’s please stick to the issues and refrain from personal attacks as we explore these important issues.

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14 Comments
  1. kelly permalink
    September 30, 2010 12:29 am

    Just a quick thank you to the creator(s) of this site. It gave me a mellow place to be able to sit back and read all the info from this side and you sited the laws well to make validations that I can’t even argue with anymore. Take care!

  2. September 27, 2010 9:47 am

    Great work keep it up!
    check out:
    http://www.supportourseas.org

  3. Lawchick01 permalink
    September 13, 2010 1:16 pm

    I see nothing but a girl that got kicked out of an aquarium, and like Naomi Rose that had one bad experience, decided to take the other route and protest. well, Lolita is going to stay there as long as she lives and Tilikum is going to stay in Orlando, if you bothered to read “the tilikum transaction” there is a letter stating he is to stay in Orlando or moved to Iceland. Keiko is a fluke, Tilikum is about the same age as Keiko was when he died. He never was free the trainers kept him close, Keiko didint really socialize into a pod. Even Cousteau said it was a mistake- I don’t see success; unlike the book the dolphins chronicles by carol j Howard in the case of Echo and Misha being successful. Tilikum is an old orca, Lolita and corky are old girls. their too old to be retired moved or stressed out about this entire thing. just because people feel they should move them doesn’t mean their right. I’ve spent years studying orcas both in captive situations and the wild. U need to understand 30yrs of past orca issues have changed. By the way, Tilikum naturally impregnated Taima and Katina and Takara, because during a time last year he was seen with these females both in Dws and in shows. so you cant tell me he’s only used for AI. He does have social time at different times. So it doesn’t make you an expert. but it does m cause i have experience in this field as well as a bachelors in psychology

    • Traci permalink
      October 5, 2010 2:34 pm

      Keiko did a 1,000 plus journey alone!

      If you think that 40 years old is old for an orca, how bout the 90 year old females that live in the San Juans! And Tillikum is also not old! J1 who impregnates most of the females here is about 55 years old! Get over it! Captivity is wrong for these animals!
      You may know something about psychology, but obviously nothing about wild orcas.

  4. roseanne permalink
    September 7, 2010 11:44 pm

    u said that it was a law for orcas to have other animal company if captive do u know a whale named shouka at 6 flags in veliagio he has nobody

    • Jake permalink
      September 8, 2010 7:24 pm

      Actually Shouka has other dolphins, it does not need to be the same species..

      • September 8, 2010 8:41 pm

        Jake, according to the Animal Welfare Act Regulation 9CFR section 3.109 regarding separation:

        “Marine mammals, whenever known to be primarily social in the wild, must be housed in their primary enclosure with at least one compatible animal of the same or biologically related species, except when the attending veterinarian, in consultation with the husbandry/training staff, determines that such housing is not in the best interest of the marine mammal’s health or well-being. However, marine mammals that are not compatible must not be housed in the same enclosure. Marine mammals must not be housed near other animals that cause them unreasonable stress or discomfort or interfere with their good health. Animals housed separately must have a written plan, approved by the attending veterinarian, developed in consultation with the husbandry/training staff, that includes the justification for the length of time the animal will be kept separated or isolated, information on the type and frequency of enrichment and interaction, if appropriate, and provisions for periodic review of the plan by the attending veterinarian. Marine mammals that are separated for nonmedical purposes must be held in facilities that meet minimum space requirements as outlined in §3.104.”

        The loose interpretation of this regulation by APHIS that dolphins are “compatible” with “orcas” goes against what is known by marine biologists regarding the social structure of orcas and dolphins. The way APHIS reads this regulation would be similar to saying a “babboon” and a “human” are compatible because both are “primates”. Shouka (at Six Flags) and Lolita (at Miami Seaquarium) are not afforded the opportunity to interact with “their own kind” although I’m sure they do receive stimulation on some level from the dolphins. Tilikum (at SeaWorld Orlando) is in complete isolation at this time with no other orcas (or dolphins)to interact with. It’s really quite sad.

    • September 8, 2010 8:23 pm

      Yes Roseanne, Shouka (who is female) is housed all alone at Six Flags. A friend paid a visit there a couple weeks ago and fully documented the conditions and numerous Animal Welfare Act violations. We will post it here on the The Orca Project as soon as the report is completed. Stay tuned.

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