Orca Captivity Research Paper

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Kayla Carter 8/25/14 Humanities 1/2° Should orcas remain in captivity? Orcas are a popular attraction at many marine parks all around the world. Every year, millions of people love to go to parks such as SeaWorld to see their world famous orca shows. However, society has debated whether or not orcas should remain in captivity for over forty years (Rose). Dictionary.com defines captivity as “the state or period of being held, imprisoned, enslaved, or confined”. The essential parts of orca captivity are the beginning of orcas in captivity, the laws regarding marine mammal captivity, the history of the movement against captivity, SeaWorld’s importance to the public, the dangers of having orcas in captivity, and the current status of orca captivity. The history of orcas in captivity began fifty years ago. In 1964 in Vancouver, Moby Doll was the first orca to ever be displayed in captivity (“Stories”). He was captured by the sculptor Samuel Burich who was hired by the Vancouver Aquarium to kill an orca in order to make a life-size model, but the aquarium’s director decided to save the orca after Burich failed to kill it after multiple attempts (“Stories”). Marine biologists visited Moby Doll and studied the sounds he made, which were sounds that had never been studied before, and took note of his tame behavior (“Stories”). Moby Doll did not do well…show more content…
A State Assembly member recently proposed a bill to end orca shows and orca captivity, but the proposal was postponed for further evaluation of the situation after SeaWorld allies argued that SeaWorld is economically significant to San Diego (Kumar). In 2013, SeaWorld paid San Diego $5 million in property taxes and $14 million in lease fees (Kumar). SeaWorld not only helps the city economically as a whole, but it also helps individual people by offering up to 4,500 jobs during its peak summer months

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