Once again I will try to give people the facts so they can look them up themselves and draw their own conclusions, rather than just expect people to believe unsupported statements or half pictures of things.
The bottom line too is Blackfish was made to try to explore why Tilikum would kill someone like Dawn who was dedicated to her job in the manner he did. What would make an orca who we know have never killed anyone in the wild kill his trainer like he did, he didn't just drown her, he mangled her and something must have driven him to that, whether it was the modules at Sealand or the frustrations of captivity, Blackfish was made to try to unravel what could have caused that.
I have as usual addressed my replies in red.
Many of us have seen the Blackfish film and quite a few have fallen for the misinformation that the film reported. At first, it was a little convincing but the obvious thing that hit me as false was THE IMAGES WERE ALL FROM THE 80s. How can that be a reliable source of something that supposedly happened now, when the filmmakers themselves say that the images were from the 80s. The images are not all from the 80's obviously as Dawns tragic death wasn't until 2010 nor was Alex Martinez's death, not Tamarie or Takara and Kasatka so lets go through it.
Recently, my significant other got a job at SeaWorld and he told me immediately that they have a website dedicated to explaining the misinformation that the film tried to impose on us. That already disproves the last statement in the film that "SeaWorld repeatedly declined to be interviewed for this film." SeaWorld is not afraid to explain to anyone who has questions and shine the light on the BLACK hearts of these Blackfish filmmakers. Seaworld DID repeatedly decline to be interviewed.
The corporation's general counsel told the Times that SeaWorld declined to be interviewed for the film "because they doubted the material would be used in good faith." SeaWorld also declined interviews for David Kirby's book Death at SeaWorld, which was released last year report here
There are many more declines across the internet and news stations and it wasn't until long after that they did reply. They had every opportunity to contribute to Blackfish itself.
As for BLACK hearts, there are many many people who think that about a corporation that still has a performing circus in light of changing public opinion.
The website in question is: Truth About Blackfish, if anyone wants to find information on what SeaWorld has to say.
I read through a pdf file that they uploaded for audience benefits that breaks down every single thing that Blackfish claimed. It was an astounding 32 pages of misleading information that even broke it down to the second of the 1-hour+ film. Again, you can find the entire pdf file on their site, but I want to bring up the ones that surprised me the most in denouncing the claims in the film. All of these quotes are from SeaWorld and the pdf that they uploaded on the analysis of the film. None of these quotes are mine or have been altered in any way.
I will counter those and add in the ones you didn't find suprising at the end. Why you chose not to address them all is again open for interpretation by anyone reading.
I have also put in BLUE a few questions that you may be able to answer yourself too which have arisen from what Seaworld have had to say. If you would like to answer those it would be a great help in getting a balances picture.
TIME STAMP:01-- 1:13The opening sequence is above, it shows a trainer doing waterworks with a killer whale, no where does it state it is Ms Brancheau and that it certainly not Tilikum, nor is it the dine with Shamu area, so I guess that is Seaworld's presumption as I certainly didn't see the clip like that at all
Opening Sequence: Undersoundtrack consisting of actual 911 calls, five separate pieces of footage combined to depict
The Opening Sequence is false and misleading. It consists of separate pieces of innocuous training and show footage taken by SeaWorld’s underwater cameras cobbled together (under actual 911 calls regarding Dawn Brancheau) to mislead the audience into believing it is viewing footage of the fatal incident between Ms. Brancheau and Tilikum on February 24, 2010. However, the Opening Sequence does not contain footage of an attack, and neither Ms. Brancheau nor Tilikum are depicted in the Opening Sequence.
- trainer (presumably Dawn Brancheau) swimming in a tank with a whale (presumably Tilikum);
- various interactions between the trainer and the whale in the water, including the whale circling trainer;
- the whale making aggressive move towards the trainer.
In addition, the Opening Sequence casts SeaWorld in a false light, misleading the audience into believing that SeaWorld trainers, including Ms. Brancheau, swam with Tilikum, which never occurred. From the date that Tilikum arrived at SeaWorld in 1993, SeaWorld had special safety protocols for the care and handling of Tilikum which prohibited any employee from conducting waterwork with Tilikum at any time.
As for the safety protocols mentioned above
''SeaWorld had special safety protocols for the care and handling of Tilikum which prohibited any employee from conducting waterwork with Tilikum at any time.''
These pictures show that although there may have been protocols, Seaworld certainly didn't enforce them and on the day Dawn died she was doing nothing different to what she would have done on any normal day.
|photograph Barcroft media|
TIME STAMP: 1:40Seaworld state that during the training process ALL trainers are made aware of the special protocols they have in place for Tilikum.
Introduction to cast member John Hargrove, who throughout Film speaks about Tilikum.
Mr. Hargrove worked at SeaWorld San Diego from 1995 until 2001 and SeaWorld Texas from 2008 through August, 2012. Hargrove never worked at SeaWorld Florida, and never worked with Tilikum.
Are Seaworld admitting that this statement is not true here and saying some of the trainers were omitted from that information?
This is what the trainers have to sign the document includes the protocols for working with Tilikum
TIME STAMP: 1:54Ms. Berg has conceded her lack of expertise in the context of offering opinions in the zoological area. In an email dated September 7, 2011 to John Black, OSHA’s Lead Trial Lawyer in the Department of Labor’s case against SeaWorld, Ms. Berg offers to critique the expert report of Jeff Andrews, Sea World’s Zoological expert in the trial, but conceded: “Mainly, I am concerned that because I only worked at SWF for 3 ½ years – and one year at Shamu Stadium that my testimony may not be credible compared to a guy with 25 years of zoological experience.” She also admits: My direct knowledge of SeaWorld’s Procedures for training their staff only extends to what was in place up until August of ’93 – I question whether this qualifies me to speak to SeaWorld’s current safety or training procedures.” Although Counsel for OSHA rejected Ms. Berg as a witness at trial, Ms. Berg repeatedly opines on these topics throughout the Film.
Introduction to cast member Samantha Berg, who throughout Film speaks about Tilikum.
Ms. Berg has not worked at SeaWorld in over 20 years. Ms. Berg worked at SeaWorld Florida from February 1990 until August 1993. She worked primarily with dolphins, beluga whales and sea lions, and had very limited experience with killer whales. Ms. Berg was not assigned to Tilikum’s team and did not work with Tilikum.
You missed out the link Seaworld provided to this email so I have added it here You will note it also says ''it is full of lies which are easily discredited simply by reading the autopsy reports from Dawn Brancheau and Daniel P Dukes.
TIME STAMP: 2:10
Introduction to cast member Kim Ashdown, who throughout the Film speaks about Tilikum.
Ms. Ashdown worked at SeaWorld Florida primarily with dolphins, beluga whales and sea lions, and with killer whales for only approximately 4 months. Ms. Ashdown was not assigned to Tilikum’s team and did not work with Tilikum. Ms. Ashdown never performed waterwork with killer whales.
This is Kim Ashdown working with either a sprayed dolphin or beluga or that is a killer whale!!
This is also an interview from Kim Ashdown conducted by Cetacean Inspiration where she states ''After 10 years with dolphins, sea lions and birds of prey, I was moved to Shamu Stadium. This was after they told trainers they would never have to be at Shamu stadium if they didn’t think they were “Shamu Material” (right after the accident with Ken Peters). After the transfer, I told them again I wasn’t “Shamu Material”…It took everything in me to admit that I was nervous around the whales, because I was fearful of losing my job. I didn’t want to fall in myself or have to rescue a trainer who might accidentally fall in and when I ask to be moved from Shamu stadium to ANY OTHER AREA including a non-animals area, I was told I was to stay at Shamu and because of my new confession, I was to be watched closely for mistakes and any mistake (MISTAKE AROUND A KILLER WHALE) would be grounds for termination'' '' Needless to say- I left. I couldn’t believe I was telling them I was nervous around Tilikum and they said they would wait for me to make a mistake working around the animals and then they would fire me. One month later, Dawn died.''
TIME STAMP: 2:12John Jett PhD is a research professor at Stetson University in Deland, FL, USA where he was nominated for professor of the (academic) year 2011-2012. He specializes in waterway management and marine mammal conservation issues. He has recently been subpoenaed as an expert witness to appear in Federal court on behalf of OSHA against Sea World. Good enough for the Federal court but not for Seaworld!!
Introduction to cast member John Jett, who throughout the Film speaks about killer whales and Tilikum.
Mr. Jett has not worked at SeaWorld in over 17 years. Mr. Jett worked at SeaWorld Florida from 1992-1996, and had limited interaction with killer whales. Mr. Jett worked for a short period of time with Tilikum under the supervision of a senior trainer. Mr. Jett was never the trainer in charge of any session with Tilikum, and had no decision on how or when Tilikum would be worked.
John Jett and Jeff Ventre also wrote a PEER REVIEWED piece that was published in the Journal of Marine Animals & Their Ecology: “Orca captivity and vulnerability to mosquito-transmitted viruses,” where they documented the death of two Orcas at Sea World by mosquito-transmitted viral diseases, including the West Nile and St. Louis encephalitis viruses.
TIME STAMP: 2:43I don't recall Dean Gomersall stating he did work with Tilikum, he mentioned and laughed about getting dressed up for the Sealion show. Never the less Seaworld made up a story to dismiss him, backed up by comments made by Robin Friday who also works with Mark Simmons.
Introduction to cast member Dean Gomersall, who throughout Film speaks about killer whales and Tilikum.
Mr. Gomersall worked at SeaWorld Florida with sea lions, beluga whales and dolphins, and never worked with killer whales. He never worked with Tilikum.
I'm kind of appalled that this film would even dare to use people who didn't even work with Tilikum, but still took the time to act like they were experts on him, or they worked with him. It's even more ridiculous to hear the testimony of former team members who didn't work with KILLER WHALES. How can you be an "expert" on this topic when your expertise was on other sea animals, not killer whales?
If this statement is true then everything Seaworld have said recently must be a lie. They have emphasized the training of killer whale trainers, shown documents (as above) showing ALL trainers were made aware of the protocols for Tilikum and all of the trainers mentioned above were deemed good enough to work in the Shamu stadium by Seaworld themselves.
I am kind of appalled that whilst these people were working at Seaworld everyone thought they were marvellous didn't they? Even Bridgette Pirtle who now profess's to stand with you had plenty to say about what working for Seaworld was like.
'' I was determined to be the action and not the “talk.” That path I chose gradually lead me here, on the outside, speaking out for change within those blue walls and within ourselves as a society. We, as a society, continue to refuse that we are better than taking animals for granted as sources of our entertainment. We should at least be capable of inspiring change for the better for them. SeaWorld has an opportunity right now. They can spend the money to fight to preserve the appearance of the fallacies they have been built on OR they can spend that money on the animals that deserve it. I spent too many years watching decisions made to spend money on show elements, playgrounds or barbeque restaurants.'' '' Ultimately, the same concerns voiced as a result of Dawn’s accident had been voiced after incidents in the past. Lessons not learned and continually disregarded. Many of those taking care of the animals are fighting for less responsibility to be placed upon their ever-drooping dorsal fins. Show schedules, public interactions, and dining obligations create a strain on animals already in a highly stressed environment. They are proudly introduced as “ambassadors” but they are simply work horses for a profit hungry industry desperate to remain relevant in a society that has already begun to recognize we have moved past such a trite necessity. Until parks like SeaWorld exhale their dying breathe, tighter regulations and stronger accountability for adhering to such guidelines is a given.''
She may have become disillusioned with Blackfish, but in this interview and another for her upcoming book review that she had removed, her reasons for leaving Seaworld were given as the way Seaworld treated those animals and their trainers, NOT as a result of Blackfish. You can see her full interview here
TIME STAMP: 2:08Same as above, with the exception of if he was classed as a junior trainer and had only worked with orcas for 3 years then how come he was doing this as Seaworld's website says it takes at least 4 years before any close interaction is allowed with killer whales?
Introduction of Jeff Ventre
Ventre has not worked for SeaWorld for over 18 years. Mr. Ventre was employed by SeaWorld from November 1987 through December 1995. Mr. Ventre worked with killer whales for approximately three years, and while he excelled physically at in-water interaction, he was not a decision maker, did not plan the day, and was considered a junior level trainer.
TIME STAMP: 4:48This wasn't to take anything away from Holly it was showing the procedure that all the orca trainers had to do. Anyone with half a brain would realise that. When you watch an action movie on say Vietnam the people in the film aren't really getting shot, but to find original footage of them being shot would be very difficult indeed, most people know it is only giving you an example, unless of course you are working your backside off to try to discredit it.
Voice of Ms. Berg over Film showing female trainer riding a whale.
This sequence misleads the audience into believing that Ms. Berg is the trainer depicted as riding the whale (i.e. engaging in “waterwork” with the whale) thereby making it appear that Ms. Berg had relevant experience. In fact, the trainer is not Ms. Berg, it is Holly Byrd, and is footage recorded at SeaWorld more than 10 years after Ms. Berg left SeaWorld. SeaWorld has no record of Ms. Berg doing waterwork with killer whales; even if she did, it was very limited.
TIME STAMP: 8:24This is not altogether incorrect, the part about him swallowing an arm may be incorrect, but that is the EMT technicians view, maybe he didn't know where the arm was, this statement might explain why.This says that after retrieving the body, they then got the net out again to retriev her arm. Combined with the autopsy report which states the arm was completely avulsed, this is possible the reason Mr Tobin thought the arm had been eaten, he may well have been working with the body of Dawn whilst the arm was still being retrieved, who knows for sure.
Interview of George Tobin, who states that Tilikum ate Ms. Brancheau’s arm.
This is false. Tilikum did not eat Ms. Brancheau’s arm; The Coroner’s Report is clear that Ms. Brancheau’s entire body, including her arm was recovered.
In Dawn's autopsy report you can see on page 6, ''the left upper extremity is completely avulsed'' The definition of avulsed in medicine, an avulsion is an injury in which a body structure is forcibly detached from its normal point of insertion by either trauma or surgery (from the Latin avellere, meaning "to tear off"). So this part was not purely for shock value the upper arm was torn off by Tilikum, who is to say that the EMT technician at the time knew where that piece of arm was?? I would dare say that due to the injuries she did sustain he would also have been incredibly shocked too. His statement was given to the police department too, NOT to Seaworld and I would presume that when giving this statement he didn't once stop to think that someone trying to discredit Blackfish may call him a liar.
Witness statements also said he would not let them have Dawn back and his mouth had to be pried open
TIME STAMP: 10:12 – 14:02As you can see from the evidence provided here. Seaworld did move straight on to Iceland and they have a recent history in the wild caught industry too.
Film implies, through David Duffus (“it’s not a singular event”) and Howard Garrett (“Without missing a beat they went from Washington to Iceland and began capturing there”), that SeaWorld continues to capture whales in the wild.
This implication is false. SeaWorld has not captured whales in nearly 34 years. The last such collection by SeaWorld took place in 1979.
Seaworld's research publications also confirm that Seaworld did indeed capture in Iceland as you can see here. At the header of their publications page they state
''Below are some of the research studies authored by SeaWorld. These studies on killer whales showcase SeaWorld's larger commitment to animal welfare and conservation. Our parks provide a unique opportunity for SeaWorld and affiliated scientists and researchers to examine killer whales up close to better understand these animals. These studies complement and strengthen research efforts in the field. Additionally, our professional team utilize their skills to support field research.
As you can see they list:
Asper, E. D. and Cornell, L.H.: Live capture statistics for the killer whale (Orcinus orca) 1961-1976 in California, Washington and British Columbia. Aquatic Mammals. 1977;5(1):21-26. note the dates
Goldsberry, D. G., Asper, E.D., and Cornell, L.H.: Live capture technique for the killer whale (Orcinus orca). Aquatic Mammals. 1978;6(3):91-95
.Leatherwood, S., Matkin, C.O., Hall, J.D. and Ellis, G.M.: Killer whales (Orcinus orca) photo-identified in Prince William Sound, Alaska, 1976 through 1987. The Canadian Field-Naturalist. 1990; 104(3):362-371
Lyrholm, T., Leatherwood, S., and Sigurjónsson, J.: Photoidentification of killer whales (Orcinus orca) off Iceland, October 1985. Cetology. 1987; 52:1-13.
Moore, S.E., Francine, J.K, Bowles, A.E., and Ford, J.K.B.: Analysis of calls of killer whales (Orcinus orca) from Iceland and Norway. Rit Fiskideildar. 1988;11:225-250.
Sigurjónsson, J., and Leatherwood, S.: The Icelandic live-capture fishery for killer whales, 1976 – 1988. Rit Fiskideilder. 1988;11:307-316.
Remember the beginning of Seaworld's web page ''Below are some of the research studies authored by SeaWorld'' Why would they author a paper on the Icelandic live-capture fishery for killer whales if they didn't capture in Iceland??
TIME STAMP: 17:22From Seaworld's own website again - Positive reinforcement can also be called rewards and one of the most common rewards is FOOD. FOOD is a primary reinforcer.
Discusses training technique of punishing whales by food deprivation. The Film implies that all institutions with captive whales, including SeaWorld, use this technique. For example, later in the Film, when discussing the incident involving Dawn Brancheau, the issue of food is brought up (1:08:47. 1:09:13) (the sound of ice at the bottom of the bucket means that food is running out) with the misleading implication that SeaWorld deprived Tilikum of food or otherwise used a deprivation type of training technique.
This implication is false. Tilikum arrived at SeaWorld weighing 7,700 pounds, and currently weighs 12,000 pounds. SeaWorld has never deprived Tilikum of food for any reason, training or otherwise. Prior to Tilikum’s arrival at SeaWorld and continuing to this day, SeaWorld has only utilized operant conditioning, a scientific method that professional animal trainers have used for decades. Through rigorous efforts, trainers gradually increase the frequency of desired animal behavior, and minimize the occurrence of undesirable behavior, by encouraging the former with “positive reinforcement” and ignoring (and thereby discouraging) the latter. Punishment is never part of operant conditioning, and punishment is never employed at SeaWorld. SeaWorld pioneered and is the recognized world’s leader in the use of operant conditioning principles for the training of killer whales.
For those of you who may not know, operant conditioning is a form of (psychological) training that was created by B. F. Skinner in which you can condition someone or something through reinforcements. It's like when you try to train a dog to fetch a ball, or roll over, or play dead and only use positive affirmation as the reward.
As in the picture above Seaworld's own website describes it very well!
Would you like to explain how not reinforcing a behaviour when the primary reinforcer is food, is different from withholding food??
Could you also explain what it means to hold an orca at half base?
Extinction Of Behavior
- If a behavior is not reinforced, it decreases. Eventually, it is extinguished altogether. This is called extinction. Animal trainers use the technique of extinction to eliminate undesired behaviors. (In animal training, when a trainer requests a particular behavior and the animal gives no response, this is also considered an undesired behavior.) To eliminate the behavior, they simply do not reinforce it. Over time, the animal learns that a particular behavior is not producing a desired effect. The animal discontinues the behavior.
- When using the extinction technique, it is important to identify what stimuli are reinforcing for an animal. The trainer must be careful not to present a positive reinforcer after an undesirable behavior. The best way to avoid reinforcing an undesired behavior is to give no stimulus at all.
What do you think in your opinion would an apex predator be most motivated by?
TIME STAMP: 24:35The points below are copied and pasted from wikipedia you can see the original here . BUT as in typical Seaworld style parts of the script are missed off so I will add them in for you and you can check them yourself on the link provided.
[Huxter] “And to this day, there’s no record of an orca doing any harm to any human in the wild.”
The people wrote a book (8) in the reference - In June 1972, the 43-foor schooner Lucette was attacked by killer whales and sank in 60 seconds. What happened next is almost incredible. In an inflatable rubber raft, with a 9 foot fiberglass dinghy to tow it, Dougal Robertson and his family were miles from any shipping lanes. They had emergency rations for only three days and no maps, compass, or instruments of any kind. After their raft sank under them, they crammed themselves into their tiny dinghy.
- In the 1910s, the Terra Nova Expedition recorded that killer whales had attempted to tip ice floes on which an expedition photographer and a sled dog team were standing. In this case the whales may have mistaken the dogs' barking for seal calls and grown curious.
- On June 15, 1972, 43-foot-long (13 m) wooden schooner Lucette (Lucy) was holed by a pod of killer whales and sank approximately 200 miles west of the Galapagos Islands. The group of six people aboard escaped to an inflatable life raft and a solid-hull dinghy.
For 37 days—using every technique of survival—they battled against 20-foot waves, marauding sharks, thirst, starvation, and exhaustion, adrift in the vast reaches of the Pacific before their ordeal was ended by a Japanese fishing boat. The Robertsons' strong determination shines through the pages of this extraordinary book which describes movingly their daily hopes and fears, crises and triumphs, tensions and heartbreaks.
No one knows why they attacked and the whales never injured any of the people involved even though they entered the water as the boats sank.
- On September 9, 1972, a Californian surfer named Hans Kretschmer reported being bitten by a killer whale at Point Sur, most maintain that this remains the only fairly well-documented instance of a wild orca biting a human. His wounds required 100 stitches.
- In August 2005, while swimming in four feet of water in Helm Bay, near Ketchikan, Alaska, a 12-year-old boy named Ellis Miller was "bumped" in the shoulder by a 25-foot transient killer whale. The boy was not bitten or injured in any way . The bay is frequented by harbor seals, and it is possible that the whale misidentified him as prey.
I think it is absolutely disgraceful for Seaworld themselves to miss off these vital bits of information to try to further their own agenda. Wikipedia is widely available to everyone and to deliberately omit information which is there for everyone to see is deplorable and just shows how manipulative they really are with the information they give out.
- The boys account can be seen here
- During the filming of the third episode of the BBC documentary "Frozen Planet" (2011), a group of orcas were filmed trying to "wave wash" the Film crew's 18-foot zodiac boat as they were filming. The crew had earlier taped the group hunting seals in the same fashion. It was not mentioned if any of the crew were hurt in the encounter. The crew described the orcas as being very tolerant of the film makers' presence. Over the course of 14 days they filmed over 20 different attacks on seals, many of which the film's series producer Vanessa Berlowitz describe as training exercises for the young calves in the group.
“[t]he adult offspring never leave their mother’s side.”
The Film offers no scientific basis for this statement, SeaWorld is aware of none, and the statement defies logic. If no adult offspring ever leave their mother, there would be no genetic diversity necessary for survival or separate pods of killer whales. It is estimated that there currently exists thousands of pods of killer whales in the wild.If there is no scientific basis for this statement then how come Seaworld's own website says the same thing. Resident (fish eating) orcas get together in super pods, breed and leave with their own matraline again.
TIME STAMP: 24:35Quote from Seaworlds own vet Todd Robeck in the recent debate '' their longevity HAS been worse in the past. Statistically I cannot say we are doing better''
Garret: “they have lifespans very similar to human life spans. The females can live to about 100, maybe more – males to about 50 or 60.”
There is no scientific support for this assertion. The most recent study on life expectancy of southern resident killer whales is that females live between 30 and 46 years and males 19 to 31 years.
Garret stated in an interview for the film Lolita: Slave to Entertainment that “in the wild female [killer whales] average 50 years of age,” which is consistent with the scientific evidence upon which SeaWorld bases its numbers.
NOAA's own statistics Lifespan: up to 50-100 years:
males typically live for about 30 years, but can live as long as 50-60 years;
females typically live about 50 years, but can live as long as 100 years
TIME STAMP: 28:52I really don't understand this statement. Jeff Ventre states ''I was at the whale and dolphin stadium'' which means he was at the whale and dolphin stadium! You cannot seriously expect people to believe that the whole of Seaworld would not be aware of Tilikum's arrival, so how is this statement misleading?
Ventre: He arrived I think in 1992. I was at Whale and Dolphin Stadium when he arrived and he was twice as large as the next animal in the facility.”
This misleadingly suggests that Ventre was present at Tilikum’s arrival at SeaWorld in 1992. However, killer whales are housed at Shamu Stadium, not at Whale and Dolphin Stadium. By his own admission, when Tilikum arrived in 1992, Ventre did not work at Shamu Stadium and he had no firsthand knowledge of Tilikum’s arrival.
Bringing this to people's attention also shows that everything Seaworld has said about the length of time it takes for a killer whale trainer to gain access to a killer whale. The website says ''SeaWorld trainers may be apprentices for four years before doing waterwork segments with killer whales. Over time, apprentice trainers may become associate trainers, trainers, and senior trainers. Senior trainers perform in many park shows and help train apprentice trainers.'' Yet if Jeff Ventre wasn't working with killer whales in 1992 by 1995 he was doing this.
How can that be, either Seaworld have lied about how long it takes to become a trainer as I dare say Jeff will have had to train too to get to this level, or he was in the Shamu stadium when Tilikum arrived. Which one is it?
TIME STAMP: 29:08I don't think this link should be used as Ingrid Visser demanded an apology from Seaworld for manipulating her papers to their own ends.
Jett: Tilikum was raked upon arrival at SeaWorld, with implication that killer whales are not raked in the wild.
The assertion regarding Tilikum is misleading, and the implication is false. Tilikum was not immediately introduced to the other whales upon his arrival at SeaWorld. When he was introduced, he did not receive rakes right away. As social hierarchy was established, in order to establish dominance, the females did on occasion give Tilikum superficial rake marks, none of which affected his health. The raking stopped within a few weeks. Ultimately, the females bred with Tilikum. There is scientific evidence that raking occurs in the wild (see nos. 43 and 44, infra), and that because whales generally travel in pods, whales do not “run away” from their pod to escape raking.
This however is Seaworld's animal profile for Tilikum. It states he finds aversive -
prolonged social access to other whales
Tilikum spent most of his life with 2 other females who displaced him physically with some regularity.
Tilikum is typically a sub dominant animal.
During times of frustration due to social stress in the environment, Tilikum has exhibited aggressive behaviour sometimes lunging towards control trainers.
As Seaworld have written the profiles themselves it proves that he was and is raked at Seaworld. Nootka and Haida raked him at Sealand and at Seaworld.
This is the show minutes before Dawn was killed. As you can see there was a great deal of social stress, with one of the orca being rammed clean out of the water and the trainers lost control and left the stage. In light of the fact that Tilikum reacts aggressively to social stress factors in his tank, shouldn't this should have been taken into account ?
TIME STAMP: 31:35The fact that the 2 trainers were filmed with unzipped wetsuits shows that the protocols were either ignored or not enforced enough to become second nature
Berg’s account of a trainer being yelled at for walking near Tilikum’s pool with wet suit unzipped.
It has always been SeaWorld’s “area safety protocol” that a trainer walking around or near any of the whale pools must have a zipped up wet suit; this was not a policy instituted solely with respect to Tilikum. The screen shot at 31:55 depicts two trainers whose wetsuits are completely zipped up. Berg’s account demonstrates that supervisors had a heightened awareness around Tilikum. The incident with the wetsuit demonstrates that the supervisors made this awareness very clear to all personnel present.
TIME STAMP: 32:47This is Seaworld's interpretation of a segment of the film. Tilikum was a non-waterwork orca and the film does not state otherwise
Trainer in red wetsuit in the water, then cuts to segment showing a large whale jumping. The whale is Tilikum in the show pool, and gives the impression that the trainer is in the water with Tilikum.
By splicing together two disparate pieces of film, the viewer is misled into thinking that the trainer in the red wetsuit was in the water with Tilikum. This casts SeaWorld in a false light, misleading the audience into believing that SeaWorld trainers swam with Tilikum, which never occurred. From the date that Tilikum arrived at SeaWorld in 1993, SeaWorld had special safety protocols for the care and handling of Tilikum which prohibited any employee from swimming with Tilikum at any time. No water work (except for the desensitization safety training conducted with Tilikum in a controlled environment prior to February 24, 2010 in pools equipped with a lift floor) was ever done with Tilikum
TIME STAMP: 33:04This is very strange as there are no incidents logged of Tilikum lunging at trainers nor Kanduke lunging for that matter. So firstly Seaworld have admitted that Kanduke also lunged at Liz Morris and Tilikums own animal profile states,''Tilikum has exhibited aggressive behaviour by mouthing the stage, vocalizing, tightening body posture, banging gates, a deep fast swim and sometimes lunging towards control trainer'' indicating that he has done this more than once, yet no incidents are logged. Chuck Tompkins of SeaWorld testified during the OSHA hearing that 'we missed a few' when referring to corporate incident reports so the lunging from both Tilikum and Kanduke must be amongst those missed.
Berg: Tilikum lunged at trainer Liz Morris (now Thomas).
This is false. Tilikum never lunged at trainer Liz Morris. In the late 1980’s, before Tilikum arrived at SeaWorld a male killer whale named Kanduke lunged at Ms. Morris.
Is we missed a few good enough when trying to maximise trainer safety?
TIME STAMP: 36:39-39:26I have already covered this on the blog, see the link here
Separating calf from mother
Kalina was disruptive to her mother and the other whales, and at the age of 4 ½ was moved to another park. The Film misleadingly depicts a calf that is only days old, not 4 ½ years old.
You can also clearly hear Carol state Kalina was 4 and a half years old in this Blackfish clip.
TIME STAMP: 38:05In the same video as above you can hear John Hargrove speaking about Takara moving. At 3:21 you can see the picture below, that is not a baby in the sling, that is a grown orca and that picture was taken from the Blackfish movie.
Separating Kasatka (mother) and Takara (daughter).
Separation occurred at SeaWorld San Diego in April of 2004 when daughter Takara was 12 years old.
Takara, at the time of the move, had her own calf, Kohana, who went with her to Orlando. At the time of the move, John Hargrove was not even working for any SeaWorld park, much less Sea World San Diego. By that point, he had not worked for SeaWorld in 3 years.
TIME STAMP: 38:05Blackfish response to this - John Hargrove came back into the SeaWorld corporation to Shamu stadium at SeaWorld of Texas. He was privy to the history of Takara since he had worked closely with her in California and would now be working with her and swimming with her in Texas. SeaWorld's own management team from Shamu stadium in California communicated this important information to him as a Senior 1 trainer at Shamu stadium in Texas
Hargrove: SeaWorld brought in a scientist to analyze the vocals. “They were long-ranged vocals . . .looking for Takara.”
This is false. SeaWorld did not call in a scientist to analyze Kasatka’s vocals. There is no evidence, scientific or otherwise, that these were “long ranged vocals . . .looking for Takara.”
During this narration, the Film shows footage of a killer whale, leaving the viewer with the impression that the whale is Kasatka. The whale is at what appears to be underwater viewing glass and is opening and closing its mouth, which leaves the impression that the whale is “vocalizing” and otherwise “calling for Takara”. However, this footage is not Kasatka, nor was this even taken at SeaWorld San Diego, which is where Kasatka lives. In fact, whales do not vocalize through their mouths. Rather, they vocalize through their blowholes.
John Hargrove was not working for SeaWorld at the time of Takara’s move, and would not have known what behavioral reaction, if any, Kasatka had to Takara’s move.
TIME STAMP: 41:31Once again Ingrid Visser demanded an apology from Seaworld for deliberately misuing her data to further their agenda. Indeed in the recent televised debate Todd Robeck said ' She is absolutely right on the dorsal fin collapse. There lifestyle is not the same as they would have in the wild there is NO WAY you can replicate that. It was misleading I'll give you that, you are right it is less than 1%'
Ventre: “Dorsal collapse happens in less than 1 percent of wild killer whales. We know this.”
This is false. There is no scientific evidence to support this claim of less than 1 percent. To the contrary, there is scientific evidence that nearly one-quarter of adult male southern resident killer whales in the wild have collapsing, collapsed or bent dorsal fins.
I would find it rather embarrassing that Seaworld's own vet would debunk their own published lie as he did here.
TIME STAMP: 43:57 – 47:29
Video footage of John Sillick whale incident in 1987 (26 years ago).
Jett: “I saw that there was just a lot of things that weren’t right and there was a lot of misinformation.”
Berg: “John Sillick was the guy who in 1987 was crushed between two whales at SeaWorld of San Diego . .. and the SeaWorld party line was that was a trainer error.”
Gomersall: It was John’s fault and he was supposed to get off that whale. And for years I believed that and I told people that.”
Ventre: “We weren’t told much about it. Other than it was trainer error. . .”
Gomersall: “Years later you look at the footage and you go, you know what, he didn’t do anything wrong.”
None of the trainers critiquing this incident worked at SeaWorld San Diego or were present for this incident. The rehearsed routine called for the trainer to ride once around the perimeter of the pool on the back of the whale. Making a poor judgment call based on the routine, Mr. Sillick decided to ride a second perimeter –facing backward -- and took the whale around a second time. This act threw off the timing of the send signal given to the other whale, which performed the behavior exactly as requested, resulting in the accident, not an act of aggression.
The footage is misleading because it does not show what occurred in the stadium prior to the incident, it does not explain the rehearsed routine for the behavior, and it fails to disclose that the trainer failed to get off the whale after the first perimeter. These omissions enable the cast to falsely claim that SeaWorld is guilty of “misinformation,” that Mr. Sillick “didn’t do anything wrong,” and that the incident was an act of aggression.
Jeff Ventre admitted in a November 16, 2011 email directed to OSHA Trial Lawyers John Black and Tremelle Howard-Fishburne and OSHA Investigator Lara Padgett, that the Sillick accident was “not even an act of whale aggression”. He goes on to say that “It was a trainer being in the wrong place and getting smashed while riding a whale.” Nevertheless, the Film portrays the incident as an act of aggression.
Following this 1987 incident, and throughout the 26 years since, SeaWorld has developed and incorporated formal protocols for all waterwork interactions to minimize trainer discretion with respect to rehearsed routines.
I think it is disgusting that Seaworld STILL try to blame John Silick for this accident. At the time the press reported things very differently.
In November 1987 SD things opened up at Seaworld San Diego, newspapers reported on at least 14 incidents that hadn't been documented. On November 21, 1987, Orky the mature five-ton male came crashing down on 26-year old John Sillick during a show in San Diego. At the time Sillick was riding on the back of a female orca. It was a crushing blow. Sillick almost died. He had severe fractures to both his hips, his pelvis, ribs and legs. After six operations in fourteen months, according to Sillick's lawyer, he was "reconstructed" with some three pounds (1.4 kg) of pins, plates and screws, including a permanent plate inserted in his pelvis and all his thoracic vertebrae permanently fused. He can walk today but his activity is limited.
After Sillick's injury, changes were finally made at Sea World. Sea World's owner, Harcourt Brace jovanovich (HBJ), the book publisher, stepped in with chairman William jovanovich calling the shots. The trainers were told to stop riding the whales, to stay out of the water with them, and to go back to the old training methods. Chief trainer Butcher was dismissed along with long-time zoological director and veterinarian Lanny H. Cornell and Sea World San Diego president Jan Schultz. William Jovanovich, chairman of Sea World's parent company, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, let it be known that he would happily unload the entire chain, for the right price.
The fault, in Jovanovich's view, lies with Sea World: He blamed park management, supervision and the way trainers and whales have been trained. Others have blamed corporate demands on the park as the chain rapidly expanded and note that Jovanovich himself has been deeply interested in Sea World management--going to far as to help design the park's logo.
Jovanvich stated he had been MISLEAD by Seaworld's management and promptly suspended Butcher, park president Jan Schultz and zoological director Lanny Cornell, the park's longtime zoological director and a well-known figure in the world of captive marine mammals. The company is currently discussing severance with the three former managers. Full article here
When Butcher had brought in his new methods and tried to standardize training in all four parks, he alienated several veteran trainers. In one year, about 35 trainers departed, according to Bud Krames, a senior trainer who left because he didn't agree with the system. New trainers had to be hired. Three of the five trainers in San Diego had three months or less experience working with orcas. Sillick, a veteran by comparison, had less than two years. In the year following the accidents, some of the injured trainers began to blame Sea World for not warning them about the "dangerous propensities of killer whales" as one lawsuit put it. Jonathan Smith's lawyer charged that Sea World and HBJ "negligently and carelessly owned, maintained, trained, inspected, controlled, supervised, located, transported and placed" the orcas, thereby exposing Smith to serious injury. Sillick and Weber also filed lawsuits. All three were later settled out of court with gag orders imposed. Following the terms of their deals with Sea World, the lawyers have refused to reveal any more than the basic details of their clients' cases. This means that no one can know any findings behind these cases; no one can learn or benefit from the thousands of pages of prepared evidence.
3 cases were settled out of court with gagging orders incorporated. Following the terms of their deals with Sea World, the lawyers have refused to reveal any more than the basic details of their clients' cases. This means that no one can know any findings behind these cases; no one can learn or benefit from the thousands of pages of prepared evidence.
TIME STAMP: 47:26
Home video footage of incident between trainer Tamarie Tollison and Orkid.
Video footage shows that Ms. Tollison broke SeaWorld’s safety protocols, including interacting with a killer whale (Orkid) without a spotter, and repeatedly stepping on Orkid’s rostrum. The Film misleadingly portrays this incident as an act of whale aggression, when the incident could have been avoided entirely had the trainer followed SeaWorld’s protocols.
This is obviously a case of aggression. Tamarie did break the safety protocols as was stated by John Hargrove and was interacting without a spotter, but never the less this cannot be construed as anything less than aggression. Orkid pulled her in where she was then also attacked by Splash. How can you possibly describe this as anything else?
TIME STAMP: 49:13The court case shows that Seaworld had asked Annette Eckis to ride Shamu in a bikini as stated above, knowing full well that no one had ridden Shamu without a wetsuit. It also shows that although Annette did them the favour by trying to promote Shamu, they once again tried all ways around to try and avoid paying her any compensation what so ever. It was on appeal that Seaworld had the judgement squashed. You can see the court report here
Footage of employee at SeaWorld San Diego riding a killer whale while wearing a bikini.
This occurred in 1971 – 42 years ago – at a time when SeaWorld was owned by the original owners (the first of three prior owners), and prior to the current safety protocols that have long been in place. This employee was a secretary, not a trainer, and the event was a publicity stunt/photo opportunity. No such incident could possibly occur at SeaWorld today.
TIME STAMP: 50:30This is John Hargroves statement of what happened which shows yet more Seaworld lies covered by court transcripts which cannot be denied.
Video of John Hargrove with bloody face. Film implies that Hargrove was injured by a whale.
This footage is misleading because Hargrove’s injury had nothing whatsoever to do with any whale. Hargrove was doing a footpush into a stage slide and when he slid across the stage, he hit his head on the concrete slideover because he didn’t perform the maneuver correctly. In the correct maneuver, the trainer would keep his head up as he enters the slideover area. Hargrove basically dove into the concrete, injuring himself.
In the statement above Seaworld already contradict themselves firstly stating ''Hargrove’s injury had nothing whatsoever to do with any whale'' then immediately contradicting that by saying ''Hargrove was doing a footpush into a stage slide and when he slid across the stage, he hit his head on the concrete slideover because he didn’t perform the maneuver correctly''.
If he was performing a foot push into a stage slide wouldn't that INVOLVE A WHALE!
TIME STAGE: 55:12The case is well documented and no one needs to work at Seaworld to know the story of Daniel P Dukes and Tilikum. Tilikums profile states - ''The profile specifically states - 7/6/1999 Drowning - no specific behaviour noted'' The Medical Examiners report however shows a totally different story, with pre and post mortem injuries and a record of his testes being completely avulsed (ripped off).
Daniel Dukes incident. Ventre: “Well, all I know is the public relations version of it. . . he climbed the barbed wire fence around the perimeter and stayed after hours.”
Ventre was no longer employed at SeaWorld at the time of this incident in 1999, so he has no personal knowledge of the facts. His assertion of a “public relations version” is false and misleading. The official Sherriff’s report includes a detailed timeline of the events: SeaWorld employees first noticed Dukes in the pool around 7:20 am. 911 was called at 7:25 am and an officer was dispatched to SeaWorld at 7:26 am. When the sheriff arrived the body was still in the pool on Tilikum’s back. There was no barbed wire fence.
The newspaper reports at the time question whether Daniel Dukes was pulled into the tank by Tilikum. As we know now Tilikum does do that as he did the same with Dawn Brancheau and Keltie Byrne was also pulled in. In my opinion maybe the case should be re examined.
TIME STAMP: 58:21For reasons known only to yourself you missed out this section which leads up to the one above
“Family Tree” of breeding by Tilikum.
There is no scientific or other evidence linking the few incidents of whale aggression at SeaWorld to a whale’s genetic connection to Tilikum.
The autopsy conclusions do not say accidental drowning at all its says:
II. Abrasions, contusions, lacerations
III Postmortem abrasions, lacerations and avulsion of the scrotum with testes
IV. Chronic bronchitis mild.
NO WHERE ON THE REPORT DOES IT SAY ACCIDENTAL ANYTHING.
As Seaworld state there are special protocols in place for Tilikum and he has always been a none waterwork animal it shows that they were aware of his aggressive tendencies and his profile says the same. In light of that why would Seaworld breed such an animal? No other reputable institution would breed an animal with aggressive tendencies.
TIME STAMP: 1:05:39I think the fact that Jeff Ventre is laughing and calls the whale 'you big dork' shows that the part is scripted!
A whale comes out onto stage while Ventre is talking into the microphone.
This segment is highly misleading because it is placed in the Film immediately before Jett states that he had been expecting somebody to be killed by Tilikum (1:06:26). Therefore, the whale coming on stage is depicted as a dangerous moment/act of aggression imperiling the trainer (Ventre). In fact, this is a scripted part of the show, and was entirely expected by the trainer (Ventre), who was never in danger.
TIME STAMP: 1:06:54As above, Seaworld state that ALL trainers were made aware of the protocols involved around Tilikum and they signed to that effect.
Berg Interview re Brancheau incident
Ms. Berg last worked at SeaWorld in 1993, seventeen years before the incident with Dawn Brancheau. Ms. Berg never worked with Tilikum and only worked with killer whales for a very brief period. Ms. Berg has no personal knowledge regarding the incident.
TIME STAMP: 1:07:01I find this extremely disturbing. There are numerous videos of Jeff Ventre doing waterworks with the orcas, since the death of Dawn Seaworld have stated that only the most experienced trainers do waterworks with their killer whales.
Ventre Interview re Brancheau incident
Mr. Ventre last worked at SeaWorld in 1995, fifteen years before the incident with Dawn Brancheau. Mr. Ventre has no personal knowledge regarding the incident. Although Mr. Ventre purports to critique the incident, Mr. Ventre had at most, three years’ experience working with killer whales at a very junior level, and never in the role of trainer-in-charge of any encounter. By comparison, Dawn Brancheau, whom Ventre purports to critique, had 16 years’ experience, was one of SeaWorld’s most senior and experienced trainers, attained the title of Supervisor of Animal Training, and was the senior trainer on Tilikum’s team.
Are Seaworld now stating that they let very junior trainers into the water with those killer whales?
They are either fully trained Seaworld trainers with the competence to critque each other as they have reached the level required to enable them to be in the water with the whales or Seaworld are lying about their safety and training procedures, which one is it?
TIME STAMP: 1:09:13I think that is the whole point, she did nothing really out of the ordinary as the pictures below show. John Jett also worked with Tilikum and is entitled to his opinion calling on his own experience as much as anyone else is. The pictures below show that Dawn wasn't doing anything out of the ordinary and shows that the protocols for working with Tilikum are not as strict as they are made out to be. In any of these photographs Tilikum could have done exactly the same as he did that day. Take note of the pony tails too, nothing out of the ordinary there either!
Jett: “There is no food left . . . she kept asking him to perform more behaviors . . . he was not getting reinforced for the behaviors that he was doing correctly; he probably was frustrated toward the end . . .
Cast members purport to criticize Dawn Brancheau for her handling of Tilikum. None of the cast members was present at the incident or had recent first-hand experience with Tilikum and are engaged in pure speculation. During the OSHA hearing, there was extensive eye-witness testimony from trainers who were present for the Dine with Shamu show and Ms. Brancheau’s interactions with Tilikum both during and after the show. Lynn Schaber, then a Senior Trainer approved to work on Tilikum’s team, served as a spotter that day. She testified that she believed Tilikum performed correctly during the Dine with Shamu show. Jan Joseph Topoleski was an additional spotter for that show and the interaction that followed. He testified, referring to Dawn, “I remember she said she was really proud of the interaction that we did; nothing really out of the ordinary”.
TIME STAMP: 1:09:46If it was not proven in court that Dawn was pulled in by her hair or her arm then to say the film falsely states as fact that it was an arm is a bit hypocritical seeing as Tilikums animal profile states in the behavioral incidents, ''grabbed ponytail, pulled in water'' as the descriptive for this terrible incident.
Jett: “Tilikum at some point grabbed a hold of her left forearm and started to drag her and eventually did a barrel roll and pulled her in.”
This is false. Jett had not worked at SeaWorld in 17 years and had limited interaction with killer whales. His account is pure speculation. At the OSHA hearing, two witnesses testified to the way in which Tilikum pulled Ms. Brancheau into the water. The first was SeaWorld trainer Jan Topoleski, who was acting as Ms. Brancheau’s spotter, who testified that Ms. Brancheau was pulled into the water by her ponytail. The second was a SeaWorld security guard (Mr. Herrera) who testified that he saw Tilikum grab Ms. Brancheau’s arm and pull her into the water (Tr. 247). However, on the date of the incident, Mr. Herrera had told the Orange County detective that the whale grabbed “either her hair or her arm.” On cross-examination during the OSHA hearing, Mr. Herrera admitted that he could not see Ms. Brancheau clearly from his vantage point and that “I’m not sure if he grabbed her arm or her hair, I don’t know. “(Tr. 249) OSHA concluded from this testimony that the way in which Ms. Brancheau entered the water “was not established as a fact at the hearing, and it is in dispute.” A third witness, Valerie Green, reported to the Orange County Sheriff that she saw “a woman’s ponytail in the whale’s mouth.” Ignoring the express OSHA finding and the overwhelming evidence that Ms. Brancheau was pulled in by her hair, the Film falsely states as “fact” that Tilikum grabbed Ms. Brancheau by the arm, for which there is no competent evidence.
It really is a shame that they use people who haven't worked there in over a decade and have had a minimal amount of time with Tilikum. I think that all this criticism against Tilikum is hurting him more than anything.
I also think people shouldn't criticize SeaWorld because they have animals in captivity. I mean seriously. If it's a bad thing to have captive animals then someone should sue me for owning a dog, a parakeet, and a hamster. They're captive. They bite me when they get upset or don't want me to handle them. Does that mean I'm a terrible person because they're captives?
This is used over and over by pro captivity people. Having a dog, a parakeet or a hamster is not the same as confining an orca. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, with breed standards and temperaments bred in and out of them for centuries, orcas have been captive for 50 years there is no comparison there. Dogs will still hunt, kill rats, cats, birds, rabbits etc even though they have been bred to be domesticated, orcas are apex predators, the top of their food chain with no enemies in their environment except us. The Seaworld orcas have worked out how to catch birds, bait them and as proven with Keiko and Yaka, they will can catch their own fish if given the chance as they are at most 3 generations from being wild with some still being wild caught.
There is also no comparison between the social structure of dogs, parakeets and hamsters and that of fish eating orcas. (Obviously that is what Seaworld orcas are as no one in their right mind would put transient mammal killers in a tank now a days) Dogs nurse their pups and they leave their mothers at 6-8 weeks, wild orcas stay with their mothers for life in matraline pods and groups. There are very few animals that have the same family bonding as the orcas, not even us, our children grow up, leave home and start families of their own, sometimes miles from their parents, this is not the case for the orcas so no comparison can be made for a domesticated animal!
SeaWorld isn't afraid to talk and educate people on what is going on in their park. They have nothing to hide.
They have a lot to hide and if I was them I would keep the focus on Blackfish too as there are far too many nasty things that could come out and are coming out that people were unaware of until now.
I think it's always best to ask about the other side of the story instead of simply accepting everything that Blackfish is attempting to pass off as truth. The Truth website really deserves a look-see so we can all get a better understanding of what is truly happening.
I agree it is also beneficial to look at the issues concerning why people protest as those listening to Seaworld and their supporters believe everything is about Blackfish as Seaworld had been successful initially in keeping the focus there, but now people are realising that there is a lot more too it that Tilikum and Blackfish. 45 dead orcas, numerous incidents, most of the things you missed out of the list which I will address below. It really does need every bit of evidence scrutinising which is why I provide external links to all the information I put out so people can check it all out for themselves.
Nothing in SeaWorld is "behind the scenes," they are more than willing to answer your questions. Take a look at the website and browse all of the things they have to say about the movie. Nothing is a secret.
A quote I saw on their website by Alyssa Simmons, a former trainer summed it all in a few words: "Conservation is not sitting back and criticizing."
You missed this
As you can see from the court transcript here, Seaworld tried to discredit David Duffus but as you can see in point 6 ''Judge Welsch indicated he considered Dr Duffus to be a credible, informative witness who's opinions assisted the court!
You missed this.
This is the strangest lie I have ever seen. This is the export permit you list on your reason Page 2 CLEARLY states
Nov 1984 7-year-old female Kandu 5 briefly grabbed the legs of trainer Georgia Jones during a Shamu show but released the trainer unhurt. The 4,500-pound killer whale took Jones’ legs in her mouth, but didn’t bite down.
Nov 1986 9-year-old female Kandu 5 pressed her snout against trainer Mark Beeler and held him against a wall for a few seconds during a performance before several hundred spectators.
March 1987 A six-ton orca suddenly grabbed trainer Jonathan Smith, 21, in its teeth, dove to the bottom of the tank, then carried him bleeding to the surface and spat him out. Smith gallantly waved to the crowd - which he attributed to his training as a Sea World performer - when a second orca slammed into him. He continued to pretend he was unhurt as the whales repeatedly dragged him 32 ft to the bottom of the pool. Smith was cut all around his torso, had a ruptured kidney and a six-inch laceration of his liver, yet he managed to escape and get out of the pool. Later reports indicate that the whales involved had been 10-year-old female Kenau and 9-year-old female Kandu 5.
June 1986 Trainer Joanne Webber, 29, suffered a fractured neck when 9-year-old female Kandu 5 landed on top of her and pushed her to the bottom of the pool during a practice session. Webber had five years experience working with orcas.
Despite being aggressive
She was mated with Winston in 1984 unfortunately she gave birth to a dead calf in January 1986.
A year later Seaworld got 2 new orca and she was introduced to Orky 2, she soon became pregnant again and gave birth to Orkid on Sept 23 1988. She was a protective and jealous mother and was none too pleased when Corky 2 showed an interest in her calf.
on August 21st 1989 Kandu was left in the back pool whilst Corky and Orkid performed in a show, she circled and circled the pool, when she entered the show pool she rammed Corky with her mouth open. Corky was OK with just a bruise or two but Kandu broke her jaw and started to bleed soon after. She immediately swam to the back pool, Orkid was by her side.
This has never been witnessed anywhere else, either in the wild or in another tank, but then an 11 month old calf wouldn't have been separated from their mother anywhere else.
Most damning for Seaworld though is the court -
Chuck Tompkins, Sea World corporate curator for zoological operations, testified that there are no specific steps for trainers to follow to respond to a life-threatening situation in the water and that their lives are ultimately up to their own “best judgment call.” Tompkins admitted that the park does not even re-evaluate its protocols after an injury or death because it deems the injuries “a result of human error” and insisted that revising safety protocols is unnecessary. He also claimed that SeaWorld has “gotten a whole lot better” with the training process over time, despite, as government attorneys noted, the killing of two trainers in a two-month span.
And then Mr Andrews.
Now I believe people have a balanced view of Blackfish and why people protest Seaworld. No matter how many rescues they do, it does not alter what has and is going on in those tanks. You have lately said go behind the scenes, find out for yourselves. How does that help anything, are Seaworld going to dig up 45 dead orcas to show people? Are they going to show them the worn, drilled out teeth? Do they explain where all the calves are when they introduce one of the mothers? i.e. do they tell people why Takara doesn't have all her calves? Why Katina doesn't have all hers?
Rather than omit evidence, or just post things Seaworld have had to say, research what Seaworld have said, find out if it is true and then let people decide for themselves, any other way is pure manipulation of the truth, the facts and those people questioning it, and that is WRONG.