Lolita, the killer whale, will no longer have to perform for food after more than 50 years of exploitation at Miami Seaquarium.
The 7,000-pound orca was seized in the Pacific Ocean in 1970 and transported to the amusement park, where it spent the rest of its life in harsh captivity and forced performances.
The Miami-based amusement park has a lengthy history of animal maltreatment, and Lolita has been the target of decades-long animal rights efforts.
Seaquarium received praise from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) last summer for its upkeep, water cleanliness, and animal welfare.
Since the stadium was closed for repairs mandated by the US, Lolita hasn’t had to give her twice-daily shows.
MS Leisure, a subsidiary of The Dolphin Company, will take over Seaquarium from the current owners. They have agreed to retire Lolita.
The Mexico-based theme park operator announced that they notified the USDA that Lolita and her Pacific white-sided dolphin pal will not be exhibited or accessible to patrons.
They won’t even be visible to the public under the new park’s management. The USDA told the new company that if they intend to exhibit either of the animals, they will need to apply for a new license.
This article by Hailey Kanowsky was first published by OneGreen Planet on 4 March 2022. Lead Image Source : ventdusud/Shutterstock.
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