Two orcas leaping into the night at one of SeaWorld’s nighttime killer whale shows. Picture by Snails2Whales. Advertisements
Some people claim that the orcas at Sea World do not live near as long at Sea World as they would in the wild. Is this true? Actually, no one knows. Comparing the life spans of wild orcas and Sea World’s orcas can easily give misleading or false information.
Female orcas in the wild normally live about 30 years and males live about 19 years in the Pacific Northwest. In Southeastern Alaska females live into their fifties and males to their late thirties. So, in those two parts of the world male orcas live 19-30 years and females live 30-50 years. Sea World has several orcas in their thirties along with another that is close to fifty. Of course, in the wild, orcas live with the dangers of starvation, underground whaling, disease, injuries, and pollution. At Sea World, orcas don’t have to worry about starving, whaling or being polluted, and if they get sick or injured they receive expert care from vets.
So we can’t really know if Sea World’s orcas have the same life span as those in the wild. Some whales at Sea World have died at young ages, but that appears to be normal in the wild. In many parts of the world wild orca calves suddenly die at a few months old. This has also happened at Sea World, but for the most part Sea World’s orcas are living as long as wild ones.
Today’s Picture of the Week is a call to action! Legislation has been introduced in Congress, HR 4019 (Schiff, D-CA) that would end SeaWorld keeping killer whales in its care! SeaWorld’s killer whales (like Trua and Tilikum in the photo above) … Continue reading
Now that’s what I call a killer whale sized hug!
Description: Short-finned pilot whales have an odd shape (compared to most of their closest cetacean relatives). They have square shaped heads with melons that bulge out a little. Their mouths curve upwards, giving them a permanent “smile,” which is especially noticeable … Continue reading
Popularity: Cetaceans (see-tay-shuhns) are very popular animals, particularly dolphins. Whales are probably most popular for their size, and dolphins popular because many people think they are cute since many breeds have a built-in smile. Porpoises are not as popular, but they … Continue reading