Wild disabled killer whale cared for by its pod

Disabled killer whale

Photo: Rainer Schimpf
Port Elizabeth, South Africa

In anticipation of the killer whale feature on Dolphins – Spy in the Pod tonight on BBC1, I thought I’d share this with you.

This juvenile killer whale is disabled. He is missing his right pectoral fin and half of his dorsal fin meaning he has difficulty in swimming at times and is unable to hunt. But he’s well looked after by the rest of his pod, who hunt on his behalf, share food and assist him in reaching the surface to breathe when he has difficulty :’)

The majority of other mammals living in family groups would instinctively see a disabled individual as an unsustainable burden that would be unable to contribute to the continuation of the species. But not killer whales, of course.

I have loved these animals since I was a little girl, but they still never cease to entirely amaze me. They, quite simply, do not belong in captivity.

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2 thoughts on “Wild disabled killer whale cared for by its pod

  1. PeteWernicke January 10, 2014 / 3:17 AM

    Just the thought of Orcas being in captivity disgusts me. Knowing that it’s a very sad reality of our time is unfathomable. Power to the people behind all conservation efforts, activism and doco’s like Blackfish for bringing this highly immoral behaviour to the public

    http://blackfishmovie.com/

  2. Joanne Vere January 11, 2014 / 12:34 AM

    For me, the discomfort with killer whale captivity has steadily increased since my first (and only) visit to SeaWorld in 1996. It was Blackfish that finally broke my heart. You don’t need to watch it if you’ve been to SeaWorld; seeing those beautiful creatures in fish bowls is moving enough. I’m reading Death at SeaWorld by Peter Kirby at the moment, which documents 40 years of shambolic brutal capture, captive breeding and tormenting captivity in the entire ignorant, ostentatious industry. It’s a wet circus and SeaWorld are the arrogant, greedy, slave driving ring masters.

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