Final SeaWorld killer-whale calf dies in Texas

SeaWorld says it may take several weeks before the results of a post-mortem are finalised. Source @SeaWorld  Twitter

Twitter (TWTR) has exploded with anti-SeaWorld comments, many blaming the company for Kyara's death and calling for SeaWorld to shut down its parks and release its animals to seaside sanctuaries.

Three-month-old Kyara, the last baby killer whale born at the orca-filled panopticon known as SeaWorld, has died from what park officials believe to be pneumonia.

Kyara died surrounded by SeaWorld staff. "As animal caregivers we dedicate our lives to these animals, and this loss will be felt throughout the entire SeaWorld family".

The killer whale calf, which was born to Tamara, was three months old and was kept away from the mother in the husbandry pool of the #Animal Hospital so that she could be taken care of by the veterinary team. They would hand feed her several times in a day so that she got enough nutrients and supplements.

SeaWorld stated attention would now turn to Takara and providing care to the rest of the orca pod.

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In an 840-word statement posted on its SeaWorldCares site, the Orlando-based company said Kyara was being treated for an infection. Tilikum died in January.

SeaWorld announced the end of its breeding program in March 2016, following years of pressure from animal rights protests and shifting public opinion about orcas being held in captivity.

The Human Society praised SeaWorld for its decision to end the breeding program, but pushed the park to make more changes, including ending similar programs for other captive animals.

The park came under increased scrutiny after the documentary "Blackfish" featured Tilikum, who killed a trainer in 2010.

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