Former Seaworld employee says orcas "self-harmed" after being subjected to drugging, starvation

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Former Seaworld employee says orcas "self-harmed" after being subjected to drugging, starvation Empty Former Seaworld employee says orcas "self-harmed" after being subjected to drugging, starvation

Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:50 am

SEAWORLD has long battled claims about the conditions its captive killer whales are kept in, including allegations they suffer such acute stress they become ill, aggressive and die early.

This week it came under fire again after Virgin Holidays announced it would no longer include packages which involve captive whales or dolphins - ending partnerships with attractions like SeaWorld and Discovery Cove.

It's incredibly welcome news for many, who argue the 36ft pools the killer whales are kept in are inhumane.

Former SeaWorld trainers John Hargrove and Jeffrey Ventre agree and have told The Sun Online that is just the tip of the iceberg.

They claim whales at the popular theme parks were routinely drugged and deprived of food and even self-harmed as a result of the psychological trauma they suffered.

Jeffrey Ventre, now 55, was initially delighted when he landed the role of SeaWorld trainer in 1987, saying: “My day to day activities were performing for the public and taking care of whales and dolphins.

"I was initially happy as it's pretty hard to do because so many wanted to be trainers, and I felt honoured to be working with marine mammals."

He says: “The job is more akin to a stunt man or clown performing with captive animals using food deprivation as a motivator."

Jeffrey came to notice the whales displayed signs of extreme distress.

They would grind their teeth or chew concrete out of boredom, causing dental damage, and "raking" - scratching each other with their teeth - was common.

He says: “There was a lot of self-mutilation. Jaw popping was regularly seen - it's a threat display between two orcas."

Jeffrey claims the whales were medicated daily for medical conditions - but also to control their behaviour.

“The whales and dolphins were stressed and this caused stomach ulcers," he explains.

"So they got meds for that. They also got chronic infections, so they got antibiotics. They were also sometimes aggressive or hard to control so they could be given Valium to calm their aggression.

“All whales were getting vitamins packed in their fish. Several got daily antibiotics, including Tilikum, for chronic teeth infections.”

Inbreeding was also common, with John recalling a whale called Taku - Tilikum's son - mating with his own mother.

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/7755593/seaworld-captive-killer-whales-drugged-self-harm/

Starting to seem that most animal attractions are hiding some sort of cruelty, isn't it?

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Post by nicko on Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:56 am

Should be banned, Whales and Dolphins should swim free !
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Post by Original Quill on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:00 am

Orcas are not whales, but the largest species of porpoises.  Their name, killer whale, comes from the Inuit name, as distorted.  The Inuits named them 'killer-of-whales' because hunting and eating the larger whales is what they do.  In English, that became contracted to 'killer whale'.

Scientists have learned that the porpoise uses more of its brain capacity than even humans.  It is small wonder that they have mental and emotional problems.

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Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:23 am

Original Quill wrote:Orcas are not whales, but the largest species of porpoises.  Their name, killer whale, comes from the Inuit name, as distorted.  The Inuits named them 'killer-of-whales' because hunting and eating the larger whales is what they do.  In English, that became contracted to 'killer whale'.

Scientists have learned that the porpoise uses more of its brain capacity than even humans.  It is small wonder that they have mental and emotional problems.

That's the same reason I think we might want to recognize chimps as "human enough" and start treating them with a bit more dignity, actually.

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Post by eddie on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:26 am

We should start treating all animals better, even if we choose to eat them...non?

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Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:28 am

eddie wrote:We should start treating all animals better, even if we choose to eat them...non?

Oh, absolutely, but we're never going to do that until we start purposefully reducing the size of the human population. All of the cruelties in the modern meat industry came about because we have so fucking many people to feed now.

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Post by eddie on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:30 am

Ben Reilly wrote:
eddie wrote:We should start treating all animals better, even if we choose to eat them...non?

Oh, absolutely, but we're never going to do that until we start purposefully reducing the size of the human population. All of the cruelties in the modern meat industry came about because we have so fucking many people to feed now.

Welllll...we don’t have to eat animals, do we? I mean, I don’t care because I’m not a meat-eater nor a hypocrite but if people are going to care about how animals are treated then they should also consider how their meat is treated when it’s a live animal.

Just sayin.

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Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:57 am

eddie wrote:
Ben Reilly wrote:
eddie wrote:We should start treating all animals better, even if we choose to eat them...non?

Oh, absolutely, but we're never going to do that until we start purposefully reducing the size of the human population. All of the cruelties in the modern meat industry came about because we have so fucking many people to feed now.

Welllll...we don’t have to eat animals, do we? I mean, I don’t care because I’m not a meat-eater nor a hypocrite but if people are going to care about how animals are treated then they should also consider how their meat is treated when it’s a live animal.

Just sayin.

I do care about how livestock are treated, I'm just saying that the system we have now -- providing meat for billions of people -- makes animal cruelty practically inevitable. What would be better for the animals in the long run is not only if fewer people ate them, but if there were fewer people, period.

Human expansion is making animals with massive habitats, like tigers, extinct. Converting wild lands into farm lands, even if we're only planting vegetables there, takes even more land away from wild animals.

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Post by eddie on Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:01 am

Then if people who eat meat care how livestock are treated, they really should look into each product they buy and research the humane animal-slaughterers and only buy from them.

That’s what I’m saying.

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Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:39 am

eddie wrote:Then if people who eat meat care how livestock are treated, they really should look into each product they buy and research the humane animal-slaughterers and only buy from them.

That’s what I’m saying.

But people won't, any more than they research the factories where their smartphones and laptops are made by people who are basically slaves.

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Post by Original Quill on Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:41 am

eddie wrote:Then if people who eat meat care how livestock are treated, they really should look into each product they buy and research the humane animal-slaughterers and only buy from them.

That’s what I’m saying.

Obviously, if you're going to eat an animal, you have to kill it.  If we look into how livestock are killed, we may find that it is much better and more humane than how the Alaskan frontiersman kills a deer, bison or bear.

Incidentally, in Ethiopia they used to chop some muscle off the leg of a cow, patch him or her up, and leave it alive for another day.  Musta hurt!  Humane or no?

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