Miami Seaquarium has recently been quoted in the press stating that, despite public concern, it will not release the orca known as Lolita. In a statement, General Manager of the Seaquarium, Andrew Hertz said it would be “reckless and cruel” to move the healthy and thriving orca from what has been her home for the last 46 years. Hertz says there is no evidence that the orca, captured from the wild in waters off the Pacific Northwest in 1970 and now over 50 years old, would survive a transition to a sea pen. We disagree. Lolita deserves the opportunity to live the remainder of her life in a more natural environment – not languish in a tank.
Marine Connection, in partnership with colleagues at Orca Network in the USA, has been corresponding with Arle Capital Partners in London. Arle manage the portfolio of Parques Reunidos, whose US subsidiary Palace Entertainment owns the Seaquarium, and is responsible for Lolita’s welfare. We have on several occasions requested a meeting to discuss her situation and possible retirement to a more natural ocean location, however to date Arle has not agreed to meet. We have now contacted Parques Reunidos direct asking them to intervene, and await their response.