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Tilikum is Dying

03/08/16 at 04:55pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #1
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Oh no.

Orlando Sentinel Wrote:Tilikum, the killer whale that became infamous for battering and drowning a SeaWorld Orlando trainer, has an apparent lung infection that could kill him.

SeaWorld announced Tilikum's illness Tuesday on social media. The orca, estimated to be 35 years old, has become increasingly lethargic over the past few weeks.

"I wish I could say I was tremendously optimistic about Tilikum and his future, but he has a disease which is chronic and progressive and at some point might cause his death," veterinarian Scott Gearhart said on a video.

SeaWorld said the bacteria that has infected Tilikum is found in a variety of species including wild cetaceans. Trainers are giving him a variety of antibiotics and antifungal medications in his fish.

"What I know is that every day that I'm here and every day that these amazing veterinarians are here, he will receive the best care," said Kelly Flaherty Clark, SeaWorld's director of animal training.

The fact he is still eating is generally a good sign, said Naomi Rose, a marine mammal scientist with the Animal Welfare Institute.

Tilikum is in SeaWorld's medical pool. Asked if he was still performing, a SeaWorld spokeswoman pointed to the company's online video — in which animal care supervisor Daniel Richardville says, "if he's ready to go out and do a show and get people wet, I'm excited to do that with him."

SeaWorld did not answer questions Tuesday afternoon about whether Tilikum has lost weight or when he first became ill. He is SeaWorld's largest whale, a spokeswoman said in an email.

Animal advocates say that Tilikum's life is a sad example of why whales should not be kept in captivity.

"The sickness at SeaWorld is with its management, which has deliberately caused Tilikum — the subject of Blackfish, the damning documentary about SeaWorld — to suffer immensely by confining him to a small concrete tank for decades, causing him to succumb to mental illness that has resulted in aggression and now to some incurable illness," People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said in a statement.

Tilikum came to SeaWorld 23 years ago from the now-defunct Sealand of the Pacific in Victoria, British Columbia. SeaWorld acquired him to breed with female orcas. Tilikum has sired more than a dozen whales for SeaWorld. But he has also been a public relations problem for the park.

He has been involved with three human deaths. He was one of three whales that drowned a trainer at Sealand. In 1999, he was involved in a second incident when the naked body of a man who had apparently sneaked in after hours to swim with the whales was found draped dead across his back.

After Tilikum killed trainer Dawn Brancheau in 2010, his life became the focus of the 2013 documentary "Blackfish." That movie suggested the stress of his captivity made him lash out and kill Brancheau. SeaWorld is still grappling with the fallout from that film: It has lost corporate sponsorships, attendance and revenue while spending more money on public relations and fending off lawsuits.

In the video released this week, SeaWorld animal care workers talked lovingly of Tilikum getting back rubs and playing with his favorite toys.

Richardville said Tilikum "has had some ups and downs healthwise." Those include what SeaWorld calls "chronic teeth issues."

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03/08/16 at 05:13pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #2
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Not Tilikum! Now whos going to make the big splash at the end of the show?

Rollercoaster?,oh, you must be talking about our festa landscaping project!
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03/08/16 at 05:33pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #3
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Mixed feelings on this. He clearly shouldn't be suffering and it's gross that PETA is using his suffering to capitalize on their agenda. On the other hand, he is old and is a product from a darker time of animals in captivty. He could use some rest.
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03/08/16 at 06:25pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #4
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It seems to me that with all the trainer deaths he has been involved in that Karma has finally caught up with him.

"Proud son of Old Virginia"
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03/08/16 at 06:37pm in Tilikum is Dying (Latest Edit: 03/08/16 at 06:38pm by Mushroom.)
Post: #5
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(03/08/16 06:25pm)The Hessian Wrote:  It seems to me that with all the trainer deaths he has been involved in that Karma has finally caught up with him.

I wouldn't exactly consider the slow, disease-ridden death of an animal who was involved with the death of one trainer to be karma. He didn't know any better. I don't think the universe is so cruel.

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03/08/16 at 06:41pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #6
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I'd personally prefer it if he appeared in the sky alongside a bowl of petunias. That's a much more graceful death.

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03/08/16 at 06:42pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #7
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I don't like the fact he is dying the way he is either but your argument could also be applied to dogs who attack people and don't know better and yet they get put down all the time without any second chances or chance at rehabilitation.

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03/08/16 at 06:43pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #8
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(03/08/16 06:25pm)The Hessian Wrote:  It seems to me that with all the trainer deaths he has been involved in that Karma has finally caught up with him.

An animal did what animals do and it deserves a slow painful death? Really?
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03/08/16 at 06:45pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #9
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I never said it deserves a slow painful death that was your implication

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03/08/16 at 06:46pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #10
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Actually, that is exactly what you said. You said this disease is karma.

"Wit has some truth in it; wisecracking is simply calisthenics with words." -- Dorothy Parker
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03/08/16 at 06:49pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #11
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Alright hold on let me make my point clear I said the fact that it is dying is Karma not the way its was dying Karma and in my opinion if anything has to die I'd prefer it to be nice and peaceful.

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03/08/16 at 06:52pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #12
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(03/08/16 06:49pm)The Hessian Wrote:  if anything has to die I'd prefer it to be nice and peaceful.

That can be arranged.

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03/08/16 at 06:53pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #13
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I can't speak for anyone else, but I find is appalling to say that he deserves to die, regardless of how.

"Wit has some truth in it; wisecracking is simply calisthenics with words." -- Dorothy Parker
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03/08/16 at 06:55pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #14
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(03/08/16 06:49pm)The Hessian Wrote:  Alright hold on let me make my point clear I said the fact that it is dying is Karma not the way its was dying Karma and in my opinion if anything has to die I'd prefer it to be nice and peaceful.

Go eat your own genitals.

The deaths related to the whale are a result of an alpha predator with prior abuse history simply snapping. It isn't human, it can't go to a therapist, it can't take some antidepressants, it is a wild fucking animal that acts like one. It shouldn't "deserve" to die for acting on what it's nature is.
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03/08/16 at 06:56pm in Tilikum is Dying
Post: #15
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I'm sorry if I offended anyone but I was attacked and nearly kid by my Grandma's dog as a kid and I still have scars of that event, hence my opinion on this whole thing.

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