Sunday 27 March 2016

Campaigners call for release of SeaWorld-owned wild-born killer whale in Tenerife

The orca captured off the Dutch coast and now performing shows should be released into a sea pen, say animal rights activists

 By Senay Boztas, Amsterdam
4:54PM GMT 22 Mar 2016

Calls are growing for the release of a wild-born killer whale who performs to British tourists in Tenerife in the wake of a decision by America's SeaWorld to stop breeding and end “theatrical shows”.

The director of a new short film on Morgan – an orca born wild, captured off the Dutch coast – has called for her to be released into a sea pen or sanctuary.

Heiko Grimm, director of the short film ‘I am Morgan – Stolen Freedom’, believes the orca, who belongs to SeaWorld, was considered valuable as she potentially introduced a new blood line to widely in-bred orcas. “The whole situation could now change for Morgan with SeaWorld’s latest announcement to stop their breeding programme,” he said.

“Because of that, Morgan is not essential for SeaWorld any more. Additionally Morgan is a good candidate for a sea pen or sea-sanctuary because she was born in the wild…Can the last part of her ‘capture, rehabilitation and release’-permit now be fulfilled? I believe so.”

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