Thursday, January 24, 2008

Whale dies at Marineland

The Niagara Falls Review – Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Marineland had lost its matriarch killer whale.

Nootka died Jan 8.

She had been at the popular tourist attraction for more than 27 years.

“We were heartbroken, absolutely heartbroken,” said Marineland spokeswoman Ann Marie Rondinelli.

“We don’t like to play favourites but she was definitely loved by everybody,” she said.

The female killer whale was believed to be around 40 years old and had given birth to a number of calves over the years.

Marineland is now awaiting the results of a necropsy.

Nootka, named after the Native American tribe that lived in parts of British Columbia and Washington, was captured in Iceland in the fall of 1979.

How You Can Help

Nootka is the latest victim in a long line of whale fatalities at Marineland. She was actually born around 1976, which made her approximately 32 when she died.

Female orcas are believed to live well into their eighties in the wild. However, the average age of a captive orca is only 12 years.

It is estimated that over 40 whales and dolphins have died at the Niagara Falls amusement park with approximately 25 of them dying in the last 10 years.

It is possible that Marineland will try to acquire another female orca for its captive breeding program. This would cause even more whales to be exploited and ultimately die in a completely unnatural and artificial environment.

NCARA believes it is cruel to capture and keep such highly social and intelligent animals in captivity for human entertainment. These animals belong in the world's oceans and deserve the right to experience life as nature intended - wild and free.

Please write to your local newspaper and express your concerns about Nootka's death and the captivity of whales and dolphins.

You can contact The Niagara Falls Review at:

and The Standard at:

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