Three Months and Three Dead Sea Mammals at SeaWorld San Antonio
If you ask me what in the world has been going on at SeaWorld San Antonio in the past few months, I’d say: more of the same. Three captive mammals have died in as many months at the increasingly disfavored institution’s southern Texas location. Each of the animals lives were drastically cut short by medical conditions they may not have had if allowed to live their lives freely in the wild, where they belong.
Dart, the 12 year old Pacific white-sided dolphin, passed away earlier this month – living to be about a third of his natural life expectancy. Unna the orca was 18, not even half of her potential age, and Stella the beluga whale was only 2 years old. There was also a prematurely born beluga whale at the San Antonio location who died shortly after birth just last year.
“Health-related issues” were cited as Dart’s cause of death, while we wait to see the formal necropsy results. Currently, one of Dart’s fellow white-sided dolphin captives, Betty, is also sick and being monitored. Even though the reporting Washington Post article says that animal captivity effects are “still debated,” my opinion is that it takes some pretty willful ignorance to not be aware of the negative impact this unnatural and demanding environment has on animals.
Photo credit: Flickr