GRAPHIC CONTENT: ‘A gruesome, medieval scene’: Shocking images reveal Japanese fleet is slaughtering whales INSIDE an international sanctuary

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  • Campaigners say they spotted vessels in Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary
  • Images of whale carcasses on bloodied ship deck captured from a helicopter
  • Another minke whale was being butchered on board, says Sea Shepherd
  • Commercial whale hunting outlawed in 1994

Japanese whaling vessels allowed ‘for research purposes’

Sea Shepherd said they had spotted the Japanese fleet today and captured evidence that four whales had been slaughtered, alleging the ships were found inside the sanctuary
MURDERERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Militant anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd says it spotted the Nisshin Maru sailing through the protected Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary during the annual whaling season.

As the Sea Shepherd’s helicopter flew above the Japanese ship, campaigners shot footage of the blood-streaked deck and the carcasses of three dead minke whales lying on the ship as another creature was butchered.

This photograph of three dead minke whales was taken by anti-whaling campaigners after they allegedly caught the Japanese vessel inside an internationally-recognised sanctuary. MURDERERS!!!!!

Sea Shepherd said it had spotted the Japanese fleet yesterday and captured evidence that four whales had been slaughtered this morning, alleging the ships were found inside the sanctuary.

Campaigners said they had located all five Japanese vessels and were now in pursuit, forcing the harpooners to cut short their operation and retreat.

Sea Shepherd said that another whale, also believed to be a minke, was being butchered on board. MURDERING BXXXXXD’S

‘That’s just a gruesome, bloody, medieval scene which has no place in this modern world.’

When the Nisshin Maru was first spotted from the air, Dr Brown said it was in Antarctica’s Ross Dependency, within New Zealand’s territorial waters and the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary, which he described as a ‘gross breach of international law’.

The commercial hunting of whales is prohibited in the sanctuary, which was designated by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in 1994, but Japan catches the animals there under a ‘scientific research’ loophole in the moratorium on whaling.

New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully denied whaling was taking place within his country’s maritime jurisdiction, saying the site was considered international waters, as he condemned the ‘pointless and offensive’ practice.

Peter Hammarstedt, captain of the Sea Shepherd ship Bob Barker, said Japan had shown ‘flagrant disregard for international law’ by continuing whaling

‘The New Zealand government has repeatedly called on Japan to end its whaling programme. We reiterate this message today,’ he said.

‘There is nothing scientific about this, it is butchery,’ Mr Brown said.

‘The one thing that’s missing here is gumption – a bit of spine in Canberra and in Wellington to put an end to it.’

Australia has taken Japan to the International Court of Justice seeking to have its research whaling programme declared illegal, with a ruling due this year.

Peter Hammarstedt, captain of the Sea Shepherd ship Bob Barker, said Japan had shown ‘flagrant disregard for international law by continuing their illegal whale hunt while the world patiently awaits a decision from the International Court of Justice’.

Japan’s fisheries agency said its programme was being conducted ‘in line with a research plan submitted to the IWC’

Sea Shepherd left Australia for their 10th annual harassment campaign of the Japanese fleet last month, sending three ships to tail and run interference against the harpooners.

High-seas clashes between the two groups are common, resulting in the 2010 sinking of the Sea Shepherd vessel Ady Gil.

Australia will be monitoring confrontations between the pair from a government jet which is due to fly surveillance missions over the Southern Ocean between January and March.

However, Dr Brown said there had so far been no sign of the aircraft.

News Link:-http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2534478/Graphic-images-Japans-whaling-released-campaigners-Sea-Shepherd.html

Graphic whaling footage Sea Shepherd releases footage of whales being killed

Published on 6 Jan 2014

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Australia Takes Japan To The International Courts Over Killing Whales

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I just received this & wanted to share it, whales have to be saved. They don’t produce young like dogs or cats do, if it doesn’t stop soon, our grandchildren won’t see wild whales; swimming freely in the ocean !!

 July 16, 2013
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Dear Julie,

In a landmark case, Australia has taken Japan to the International Court of Justice over its ‘scientific whaling’ program—one that kills hundreds of whales every year in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary. Japan, Iceland and Norway all continue their whale hunts, despite the fact that these gentle ocean creatures already face increasing challenges posed by marine pollution, climate change, ship-strikes, bycatch, and more.

Urge nations to make their waters whale-friendly.

While the court’s decision on Japanese whaling in the Southern Ocean is expected by the end of the year, there has never been a more opportune time to pressure whaling nations to stop the cruel practice of commercial whaling.

Make your voice heard today.

Whales Need Refuge

In 1986, the International Whaling Commission (IWC) banned commercial whaling; yet even today, several countries continue the cruel practice. Why? Because under the 1946 IWC Convention, two loopholes allow countries to kill under the pretense of “official objection” or “scientific whaling.” However it’s labeled, whales are dying for commercial gain.

There is no excuse for continuing to allow this barbaric and outdated practice, especially as other threats to whales such as pollution and climate change increase. It is time to call on all nations to safeguard whales from this cruel and unnecessary threat to whales in their waters.

Join us in calling on world leaders to make their waters whale-friendly by banning commercial hunting and the transit of whale products, thereby giving whales needed refuge everywhere they feed, breed and migrate. No exceptions.

Please sign:-http://action.hsi.org/ea-action/action?ea.client.id=104&ea.campaign.id=21617&ea.tracking.id=email&ea.url.id=156007&ea.campaigner.email=KmIGskm9q9s8Id8OlpmXxz%2BUx/5a9CUY&ea_broadcast_target_id=0

No Room For Whaling in the 21st Century

HSI  Published on 28 Jun 2012

Whales face so many substantial threats–including climate change, pollution, entanglement, ship strikes–and all of these pale in comparison to hunting by Japan, Norway, and Iceland. These hunts are inhumane and unsustainable. What’s worse, the meat isn’t selling. Get involved, join us and help us protect these magnificent animals who really need our help! http://www.hsi.org/iwc

Watch as Two Divers Narrowly Avoid being Eaten by Humpback Whales [VIDEO]

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A pair of dive instructors killing time in the water before their next class had a close encounter with a much bigger pair: two humpback whales breaching the surface to feed within arm’s reach of the men.

Whales breach near divers

A school of tasty sardines swam to where the men were in the water, followed in hot pursuit by the whales.

The encounter was caught on film by crew members aboard their diving boat while the group was about two miles out from Morro Bay along the Central California coast.

Shawn Stamback, one of two men in the water, told Pete Thomas Outdoors that he has seen the humpback whales feeding about a quarter-mile away when he and Francis Antigua got into the water with snorkeling gear and cameras to pass time before their next scuba dive.

“We were just floating around in the water, hoping to get some shots of the whales in the distance, when all of a sudden the sardines started going crazy,” Stamback said.

In the video, which has been edited to show footage from the surface and underwater, countless sardines appear out of nowhere, skipping violently across the water and swarming a camera under the surface. The footage cuts to above water in time to see the two humpback whales breaching the surface like a pair of synchronized swimmers, each narrowly missing a mouthful of diver as they devour the fish.

The whales can be seen briefly in the background as the video begins, but they quickly disappear from view. After the ordeal, one of the divers admitted that he knew it was going to happen, but seemed to be unfazed by the close encounter. The man filming the episode jokes, “You’re going to have to do more to clean that wetsuit.

Humpback whales can weigh up to 40 tons and are common in the waters along the Central California coast. The mammals feed on krill and small schooling fish.

Harassing whales or interfering with their behavior is illegal and boaters are advised to stay at least 100 feet away from the creatures if seen in the water.

Monica DeAngelis, a mammal expert with the National Marine Fisheries Service, told Pete Thomas Outdoors that it was unclear based on the video whether the divers were violating any laws.

“[But] they certainly are lucky no one got hurt,” she said. “In addition, they were clearly closer than the [100-foot] recommended guidelines.”

The men were unharmed in the incident, though the close encounter is sure to be a story they will not soon forget.

News Link:-http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/3105/20130722/watch-two-divers-narrowly-avoid-being-eaten-humpback-whales-video.htm

Whales almost eat Divers (Original Version)

Published on 20 Jul 2013

While Diving Souza Rock on the Central california Coast Divers have a close call with HumpBack Whales.

Camera men: Jay Hebrard Francis Antigua Jeremy Bonnett Shawn Stamback
Aboard the Dive boat “Magic” of SLODIVERS

SeaWorld Orca “Vicky” Dies in Spain

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June 16, 2013 

After demonstrating ‘strange behaviours’ in the days prior, a 10-month-old whale passes away.

An infant female orca by the name of Vicky has died at the Loro Parque amusement park in the Canary Islands, park officials announced today on its Facebook page.

The whales owned by SeaWorld can be extremely hindered in their ability to mother their young. (Photo: Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images)

Vicky, just 10 months old, had been rejected by her mother Kohana, a young orca who was ripped from her own mother’s side at just 19 months of age and eventually shipped off to Tenerife.

“In contrast with joy with which Loro Parque announced the birth of the second baby orca in Spain, last August 3rd, today with enormous regret we inform you of the sad demise of Vicky, who with so much emotion and affection, the team of OrcaOcean cared for in her 10 months of life,”Loro Parque’s Facebook page says.

The death was sudden and the cause unknown, though Vicky had been showing unusual behaviours in recent days, according to the post. It was serious enough to fly in SeaWorld’s chief veterinarian to perform an examination.

The orcas at Loro Parque all belong to SeaWorld, and are cared for and trained according to SeaWorld protocols. In 2006, the company flew four young whales—two females, Kohana and Skyla, and two males, Keto and Tekoa—to Spain on a “breeding loan.

About two years later Kohana, at just six years of age, (extremely young for an orca) was impregnated and, in 2010, gave birth to a male calf named Adan. All orcas born at Loro Parque are the legal property of SeaWorld.

Kohana, however, was an utterly unfit mother, and she wanted nothing to do with Adan, rejecting him almost immediately.

Many critics speculated that Kohana had simply never learned how to be a mother, because there were no mother orcas at Loro Parque for her to emulate. It didn’t help matters that Kohana only spent 19 months with her own mother before being taken away.

Even as Adan was being hand-nursed by park staff, Kohana became pregnant again, this time with Vicky. The father in both pregnancies was Keto, who is Kohana’s uncle, making Adan and Vicky more inbred orcas to add to SeaWorld’s “collection.”

One whale at a SeaWorld park was impregnated by her own son. According to bloodline charts, Vicky was related to 21 out of 26 SeaWorld killer whales.

Last year, when Vicky was born, Kohana again immediately rejected her calf. The double-tragedy was covered beautifully by Elizabeth Batt at Digital Journal.

I have been studying killer whale issues intensively for about three years, and have never heard of a mother rejecting her calf in the wild. It is hard to imagine. But in my book Death at SeaWorldI document several cases of maternal rejection in captivity.

TakePart has written about Loro Parque in the past, including this article about the female orca Morgan who, after stranding in the Netherlands, was sent to Tenerife and is now listed on SeaWorld’s stock offering as belonging to them.

And last December, in another piece, TakePart reported that, “Advocates were aghast at the trans-Atlantic arrangement. Killer whales, whether in the ocean or a crowded pool, are highly socialized animals who learn from elders about proper norms of behaviour. Mothers, grandmothers and older siblings keep youngsters in check, and extinguish outbursts of disharmony that disrupt cohesion and proper pod functioning.”

“These whales are so young, without a normal upbringing, and now they’re in Spain together without any sort of adult orca supervision,’ one observer said. ‘It’s like Lord of the Flies over there.’”

It’s not clear if Kohana’s rejection of Vicky, or her inbreeding, contributed to her death (50 percent of wild-born orcas do not survive their first year). But it’s just another sad mark on the history and reputation of Loro Parque.

As I wrote in my book, at least one trainer was deeply concerned about the whales, and the way that Kohana’s uncle, Keto, kept trying to breed with her.

The trainer, Alex Martinez, turned to his personal diary to describe his growing worries about the erratic behaviour. The whales’ seemingly bottomless sex drives were on the verge of upending the fragile social order imposed upon the hormonally charged adolescents.

“Keto is obsessed with controlling Kohana, he won’t separate from her, including shows,” Martinez wrote. Tekoa was also “very sexual when he is alone with Kohana.”

A few months later, Keto would “go off behaviour” and brutally ram Martinez in the chest, killing him. Just two months after that, Dawn Brancheau would be mortally wounded in a similar fashion at SeaWorld Florida by the three-time killer Tilikum, who happens to be grandfather to Kohana and great-grandfather to her two hapless children, one of them now tragically gone.

News Link:-http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/06/16/breaking-seaworld-orca-dies-spain

TAKE THE PLEDGE:- Don’t the Ticket! Whales & Dolphins Shouldn’t Be in Captivity:- Please click link to sign :- http://www.takepart.com/actions/dont-buy-ticket-whale-show?cmpid=tp-ptnr-tab-d84909c52edcceb20c7bba62052b1b01

Activists to Orca Enslavers: Thanks, but No Tanks

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June 25, 2013 By 

Confining the planet’s second smartest mammal to aquarium tanks is cruel and unusual punishment.

July is shaping up to be a tough month for the captive marine mammal industry. My book, Death at SeaWorld, Shamu and the Dark Side of Killer Whales in Captivity, comes out in paperback in one week, on July 2, followed by the release of the critically acclaimed documentaryBlackfish, which opens July 17. The double-punch against orca captivity has been duly noted by major media around the world, including an upcoming feature article in Business Week.

Then, on July 27, comes a global day of protest against marine mammal facilities, taking place in at least 21 locations around the worldEmpty the Tanks Worldwide is billed by the group’s Facebook page as “a day for everyone around the world to stand up against marine mammal captivity. The abuse and exploitation of these sentient beings has no place in the 21st century.” 

Recently, I caught up with Empty the Tanks organizer Rachel Greenhalgh from her home near Seattle, not far from the San Juan Islands, Washington—one of the world’s premier places to see orcas in their natural habitat: the vast and open sea.

TakePart: How did you come up with this idea?

Rachel Greenhalgh: I was in Taiji, Japan, as a Cove Guardian in January of this year. On one of my last days there I was thinking that I wanted to find a way to be productive and proactive in this fight against the captivity industry after I returned home. That’s when and where this whole idea began. The captive animals floating listlessly in their tiny sea pens in Taiji are a sight that cuts you to your core. I wanted to come home and continue fighting for them.

How did you get the word out?

I began messaging other activists around the world, asking if they would become event coordinators. It took time but I eventually found passionate and dedicated individuals to help carry out this important event with me. Once I had about a half dozen participating locations, I began getting messages from people all over the world who wanted to host their own Empty the Tanks event. Facebook has created amazing connection opportunities for activists like myself.

How many people in how many cities are now signed up to take part?

We have 21 locations in nine countries participating in the Empty the Tanks event. I am expecting a few hundred people to participate in these events around the world. Those numbers will hopefully grow each year that this annual event continues.

What is the most unexpected place where a protest is taking part?

I don’t know that there is an unexpected place. I think it is amazing we have 21 locations in nine counties. The two events taking place in Japan are very meaningful to me simply because of the time I spent in Taiji, Japan. I think it is incredible to see such commitment in the Japanese activists.

Do you want to retire marine mammals over time, or close down marine parks altogether?

Ideally, I would want these parks to close down. I do not feel marine mammal entertainment parks have any place in the 21st century. We know the level of awareness these animals have. We know their social connections, their eating habits, and natural wild behaviours. You cannot breed natural instincts out of an animal in a handful of generations. These are incredibly social, intelligent beings that are being used to make money. It is animal slavery, and it needs to be brought to the general public’s attention.

Empty the Tanks is not a radical movement requesting the release of all the captive whales and dolphins. Some of these animals might be great candidates for release, but those that are not should be retired into sea pens, where they can enjoy the rest of their days in natural seawater, feeling the waves of the ocean around them. They should not be worked until their last breath is taken and then thrown out like trash and replaced.

Why Is SeaWorld Allowing Its Killer Whales to Live in Crumbling Pools?

What do you expect to happen outside these facilities and how will guests get the message?

These events are about getting a message to the general public. We are trying to reach those going to the ticket counter. We are not the ones buying the tickets and keeping these parks in business, and we need to reach the public and get them to understand what they are supporting. We have some great informational postcards that will be handed out to anyone willing to take one as well as some powerful banners with images that speak for themselves.

Have you received any response from the captive display industry?

I have not heard from anyone in the captivity industry so far. I have been banned from most of the marine parks’ Facebook pages so I haven’t been able to post event information on them. (Someone claiming to be a SeaWorld educator, and another person says she used to work at the company, have posted comments the EET Facebook page.)

Where can people get more information?

If someone would like to host an event on July 27, or get more information, please send me an email to Rachel@emptythetanksworldwide.com. They can also contact me via thewebsite.

What do you think will come of this and what can concerned citizens do next when it’s over?

I think we will reach new people who were unaware of this issue. Even if we only get one family to turn away from that planned day at the park, well that is one more family on our side of this fight. Every person matters and eventually we will win this fight. We will see an end to marine mammal exploitation and to places like SeaWorld. We have already seen other countries ban shows using dolphins, so it is only a matter of time before the whole world catches on. I will not stop until we do. The best thing concerned citizens can do is continue to spread the truth about the captivity industry. Never stop talking about this issue until we empty the tanks worldwide.

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Forced Inbreeding and Bloody Battles—Killer Whales Live in Horror at Spanish Theme Park

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“My apologies for these late posts” March 15, 2013 

Attacks against low-ranking orcas are not only intolerable—they’re illegal. Will U.S. officials step in and save them?

The battle scars of Tekoa, a killer whale living at Loro Parque, a Spanish theme park. (Photo: timzimmermann.com)

Animal welfare advocates are desperately seeking U.S. government intervention in the case of seven Sea World-owned killer whales on “loan” at Loro Parque, a theme park in Spain’s Canary Islands.

Armed with photographic evidence showing at least two lower-ranking orcas raked with teeth marks, and a new, damning report from a leading whale scientist, advocates say the federal government must repatriate the animals back to the United States at once.

“The group of orcas held at Loro Parque is fundamentally dysfunctional and the trainers there are not experienced enough to recognize or address this. Remote oversight by SeaWorld has been insufficient to prevent systemic social problems within this group of animals,” Dr. Naomi Rose, senior scientist at Humane Society Internationalwrote last month to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which shares jurisdiction over captive marine mammals with the USDA.

“The situation at Loro Parque cannot safeguard the orcas’ well-being and once again, we urge you to compel SeaWorld to repatriate these animals,” Rose said in a letter cosigned by the Animal Welfare Institute and Whale and Dolphin Conservation.

The two low-ranking members of the artificial, dysfunctional pod at Loro Parque are routinely subjected to violent attacks, leaving deep scars etched in their skin that would be unthinkable among orcas in the natural environment, critics allege.

One victim is the young female Morgan, a wild orca who became lost off the Dutch coast and, following lengthy court battles, ended up in Tenerife.

“Since her transfer she has been brutally and continually attacked and is subjected to excessive sexual pressure from a male orca who she is often locked into the same tank with,” Dr. Ingrid Visser of New Zealand’s Orca Research Trust wrote of Morgan in the report, which has been submitted to USDA and NOAA as evidence in the repatriation effort.

Trainers at the park show “a clear lack of empathy for this animal,” Visser said, “who ignore her calls for attention and her cries for help and disregard aggressive attacks on her by the other animals.”

Visser observed Morgan for 77 hours over eight days, and witnessed an “unprecedented 91 aggression events” involving the newcomer, who arrived in 2011. “Morgan, was attacked, on average, more than once an hour,” she wrote, noting that a similar study of another captive orca “recorded an aggressive episode only once every 234 hours.”

In other words, Morgan is “over than 100 times more likely to be attacked at Loro Parque than the orca in the other study,” Visser said. Morgan has suffered more than 320 puncture and bite marks (all documented by photographs), she added. “This does not include the damage she has self-inflicted from abnormal and repetitive behaviours such as banging her head on the concrete tanks.”

The other abused orca is Tekoa, who Visser once called in court documents “the most attacked and bitten orca in the world-wide captive industry.”

The young, confounding life of Tekoa has never been easy, and he has been both perpetrator and victim of serious attacks that simply do not happen in the wild. But when one considers the messed up little society in which he has been forced to live, the aggression becomes easier to comprehend.

In 2006, Sea World sent four young whales, all born in captivity, to Loro Parque on a renewable 25-year loan in exchange for a percentage at the box-office and ownership of offspring produced at the park.

All four transplants, two males and two females, had already led lives that I described as “interrupted” in my book Death at SeaWorld.  The females were Kohana, and Skyla. Both males are related to Skyla. Keto is a half-brother though their mother Kalina and the oldest and perhaps most dysfunctional of the quartet. But it’s the ravaged Tekoa, Skyla’s half-brother through Tilikum, who caught the attention of many advocates.

Tekoa was born in Orlando to an unstable mother named Taima, a bizarre hybrid of Icelandic mother and Pacific-transient father who could only be bred in captivity. Taima attacked her first-born and was equally aggressive with Tekoa. Mother and son were separated after Taima tried to kill him. In April 2004, Sea World sent Tekoa to San Antonio before “lending” him to Loro Parque in 2006.

Advocates were aghast at the trans-Atlantic arrangement. Killer whales, whether in the ocean or a crowded pool, are highly socialized animals who learn from elders about proper norms of behaviour. Mothers, grandmothers and older siblings keep youngsters in check, and extinguish outbursts of disharmony that disrupt cohesion and proper pod functioning.

“These whales are so young, without a normal upbringing, and now they’re in Spain together without any sort of adult orca supervision,” one observer said. “It’s like Lord of the Flies over there.”

The little dysfunctional family has grown recently.

In October 2010, the very young Kohana gave birth to a male calf, Adan, who she immediately rejected. Last August, she gave birth again, to a female named Victoria, who was also promptly rejected. Keto is the father of both, but as Elizabeth Batt pointed out at Digital Journal, he is a blood relative of Kohana, meaning she was bred twice “to her own uncle.”

Killer whale society is highly stable, though at Loro Parque, it seems to be anything but. Trainers have paid the price for this instability, but so have the orcas, especially the sub-dominant members of this matriarchal world.

Lowly Tekoa has borne much of the physical abuse, as evidenced by photos taken before and after his skin was covered in “rake marks” etched from the sharp conical teeth of tank-mates. Unlike the ocean, when an orca is attacked at Loro Parque, there is nowhere to escape, nowhere to hide.

This image, first published by journalist Tim Zimmermann, shows that Tekoa’s dorsal side is scarred, scraped and battered by teeth-marks inflicted by his tank-mates, some of whom are related to him, in Sea World’s tiny, inbred universe of captive orcas.

“Tekoa is definitely subordinate, although he is probably no longer the lowest in the hierarchy—Morgan and the two calves are in that position now,” Naomi Rose told TakePart. “In wild orca society, no one gets beat up like this.”

In the wild, offspring likely inherit their mother’s status, which along with age determines pecking order. Thus, “beating each other up doesn’t need to occur and doesn’t, occur,” Rose asserted. Calves might nip others out of “youthful ignorance and exuberance,” she said, and relatives sometimes show a few nicks.

Other nicks, scratches and scars “are probably inflicted when discipline is meted out within a maternal group,” Rose said. But those are minor wounds that only sometimes become permanent scars. “We never see this kind of mish-mash of scars and rake marks and wounds when photo-identifying a wild orca,” she said.

Ingrid Visser concurred. “In the wild, even these playful nips are exactly that: You don’t see the outright attacks like I’ve seen at Loro Parque.” She compared such aberrant activities to what takes place in prison, calling it “seriously aggressive behaviour, typically manifested on the lower individuals in the population,” as opposed to the “protective behaviour” of more “normal” societies.

The beat-up Tekoa is himself no stranger to displaying “seriously aggressive behaviour,” at least against people.

In October 2007, trainer Claudia Vollhardt was warming up with Tekoa when he became frustrated and took her arm into his mouth. Then he dove to the bottom. Tekoa held her underwater a moment, then dragged her to the surface. After escaping, even as Vollhardt lay injured and bleeding, Tekoa tried to lunge from the water at her. Her right lung was punctured and her forearm fractured into three pieces. 

Suzanne Allee, a former Sea World employee who worked at Loro Parque, recalled that in the summer of 2007, “Tekoa was forced to perform while injured and bleeding after the supervisor lost control of Keto and he raced into the show pool and attacked Tekoa.” The supervisor ordered the show to go on, but “Claudia was the one who continued to perform with Tekoa,” Allee said. “I still believe Tekoa remembered this incident when he attacked her just a few months later.”

Both Tekoa and half-sister Sklya were banished from “water work” with trainers, due to aggressive unpredictability. Now, only Kohana and Keto could be trusted to swim with humans.

That illusion shattered on Christmas Eve, 2009, when Keto brutally rammed and killed trainer Alexis Martinez, a close friend of Orlando employee Dawn Brancheau, who’d spent time in Tenerife training trainers. Two months later, Brancheau was killed by Tekoa’s father, Tilikum.

Because these unstable creatures belong to SeaWorld, they still fall under the jurisdiction of the USDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Activists continue to lobby for action, but so far the feds refuse to intervene.

“We’re in touch with the U.S. regulatory authorities to pressure them to act under what we believe are their obligations under the law,” explained Courtney Vail of Whale and Dolphin Conservation. But the government has “put the onus on us to prove there are issues over there, and I think that Ingrid Visser’s eyewitness accounts, and these other photos, provide all the evidence they need to intervene,” Vail said. “We are awaiting their response.”

Meanwhile, she added, the Canary Island orcas are “beating each other up over there.”

Activists say the time to return these hapless whales to the United States is now, before more injuries and deaths occur. And though some might scoff at “repatriating” marine mammals, scientists like Rose take the idea quite seriously.

Rose noted that SeaWorld repatriated the orca Ikaika from Marineland Ontario after decrying his sub-par conditions in Canada. “Clearly the company is able and willing to relocate orcas when conditions at a present holding facility put them at risk,” she wrote, adding that, “Loro Parque and Sea World must act—if Sea World will not, NOAA must compel it to.”

News Link:http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/03/14/activists-us-repatriate-seaworld-orcas-dysfunctional-spanish-tanks

TAKE THE PLEDGE:- Don’t the Ticket! Whales & Dolphins Shouldn’t Be in Captivity:- Please click link to sign :- http://www.takepart.com/actions/dont-buy-ticket-whale-show?cmpid=tp-ptnr-tab-d84909c52edcceb20c7bba62052b1b01

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