5 min read

Here's A Truthful Version Of SeaWorld's New 'Truth' Ad

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As a former SeaWorld orca trainer's scathing new book trends on Facebook, the company's public relations hamsters are madly dashing on their wheels.

A new ad campaign on Monday debuted several videos meant to shine a happy light on the marine park's captive residents. The first begins with SeaWorld veterinarian Chris Dold, who addresses the life span of captive orca compared with those in the wild.

Dold says that SeaWorld's killer whales "live just as long as killer whales in the wild," but that statement just doesn't match up to the facts.

Here's what SeaWorld should have said about the life spans of its orca whales.

"There's been a lot of criticism about SeaWorld these days - fair enough, since our orcas tend to die early. All but one of our females has died before age 40. Only two males have surpassed 35. In the wild, orca whale life span is about 30 to 60 years for males and 50 to 100 years for females."


"We tell people that female orcas live about 30 to 50 years and males live around 19 to 30 years. This contradicts the widely accepted estimates from the most respected government scientists. Ignore those."


"Come see our oldest whale - before it's too late! A female whale at SeaWorld San Diego named Corky is nearly 50 years old. In 1969 she was ripped from her pod off British Columbia."


"Despite living in a tank with no family members, Corky is often referred to as a matriarch. But had she remained in the wild, she would actually still be swimming with the other members of her pod. She could have been looking forward to another few decades in the wild, possibly even living as long as a 103-year-old wild orca named 'Granny,' who was spotted off the coast of Washington state last year."


"Our orcas have ample chances to reproduce and make more profit - er, whales. Corky, for instance, gave birth seven times while in captivity. Kiva, the longest surviving calf, lived only 46 days."


"Our orcas get the all-inclusive marine park experience: horrifying teeth marks (also called rake marks) on their backs from fighting with other whales in their cramped quarters, cataracts, maybe even death from a hemorrhage in front of a shocked crowd. Whales at SeaWorld certainly don't live the same exact quality of life - and length of life - as those in the wild. This video says it all:"

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