SeaWorld Orlando loses another orca

Posted Tuesday, October 5, 2010 1:13 PM | Contributed by Jeff

SeaWorld officials report that Kalina, a 25-year-old killer whale at the Orlando theme park, died Monday, Oct. 4, after a sudden illness.

Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 2:50 PM
kpjb's avatar

So you learn more by experiencing a cheetah sleeping in a zoo than by watching them run and hunt in the wild on TV? Rollercoaster analogy is a bad one.

Yeah, the roller coaster analogy is terrible. A coaster's natural "habitat" is in an amusement park, where it's being ridden by guests.

I disagree. The statement was that you don't need zoos/wildlife parks because you can watch the animals on tv. The gist was that you need not see the things in real life if you have an HDTV. The comparison is valid. I don't care how good your TV is, it's no match for the real thing whether you're talking animals or coasters.

Last edited by kpjb, Wednesday, October 6, 2010 2:51 PM

Hi

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 2:59 PM

My point, with regard to the coaster analogy, was that coasters aren't being removed from their natural habitat in order to entertain us. That's why I question the value of zoos - not because there's no value at all, but because that value comes at a cost. And it reasonable to presume the value only decreases over time, as we both reach the limit as to what we can learn via the animals' captivity, and as alternative means of conveying information about them become more effective.


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:04 PM
kpjb's avatar

djDaemon said:
My point, with regard to the coaster analogy, was that coasters aren't being removed from their natural habitat in order to entertain us.

The Big Dipper is. :)


Hi

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:05 PM

Extinct animals don't count. :)


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:06 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

The Big Dipper would be more fun if they allowed me to poke it with a stick.


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:07 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

djDaemon said:
and as alternative means of conveying information about them become more effective.

My point was that HD TV compared to old school TV doesn't even register on the scale of TV vs. real life in terms of quality of experience, even if the HD TV can show you the animal in it's actual habitat doing more than sleeping.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:08 PM

I never said that we don't need zoos/wildlife parks because you can watch animals on TV. And whether you are talking about seeing animals live in person or watching them on TV (other than animals that you actually ride), you are primarily going to experience them with your eyes. I argue that you get a better appreciation for an animal seeing it in the wild than you do watching it stand/sleep in a cage. That is not to say there is no value in seeing one in person (even if it is just standing there/sleeping). I guess you can't duplicate the smell of an animal at this point on TV.

Coasters are totally different. You do more than just see them. There are forces, sensations, etc. that cannot be duplicated watching one on TV or by reading about it.

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:11 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

But there are zoos that have interactions with animals that you can't get by watching them on TV or reading about them...


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:14 PM

ApolloAndy said:

djDaemon said:
and as alternative means of conveying information about them become more effective.

My point was that HD TV compared to old school TV doesn't even register on the scale of TV vs. real life in terms of quality of experience, even if the HD TV can show you the animal in it's actual habitat doing more than sleeping.

You missed the point again. I think we non-animal-studying scientists can learn more about animals watching them in their natural habitats doing what they do naturally on a non-HDTV than we can seeing them in cages/pens in zoos. That is not to say that there isn't some value in seeing animals in person. And I understand that a lot of folks need to see something in person to really care about it or get interested in it. Often times I think that is just something weak and dumb in our species.

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:19 PM

ApolloAndy said:
My point was that HD TV compared to old school TV doesn't even register on the scale of TV vs. real life in terms of quality of experience, even if the HD TV can show you the animal in it's actual habitat doing more than sleeping.

I think that's far too broad a statement.

A gorilla exhibit at a zoo will probably give you better insight into their habits than would a mountain lion exhibit. I have a hard time believing that watching a mountain lion sleeping dejectedly as far from the fence as possible is going to educate anyone about how that animal behaves in its natural environment.


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:28 PM

Tekwardo said:
But there are zoos that have interactions with animals that you can't get by watching them on TV or reading about them...

Very true. Never said zoos had no place. Though interactions with animals at the zoos I visit are the exception rather than the rule.

I am just not sure why we tend to feel so bad about saying we keep animals in zoos for our own entertainment. We make some animals do work for us. We keep large numbers of animals in horrible conditions, drug them up and kill them in really nasty ways all in the name of food (which I support as I really like the taste of dead cow, chicken, pig, etc.). Why would we feel guilty about letting animals lounge around and live until they die naturally in zoos?

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:28 PM

There was a filmmaker as a guest on Nightline last week who claimed that much of what we see in those films and documentaries is staged and uses trained animals. All those "dens" we see that have cameras inside are man-made, and the animals are enticed to use them.

He gave several interesting examples. One was a movie about a young whale and its mother migrating from Hawaii to Alaska. I don't remember the film's title. The filmmaker said they had absolutely no way to identify individual animals, so the crew filmed some whales near Hawaii, then flew to Alaska and shot footage of another pair of whales. Add dramatic music and emotional narration, and it certainly appears that Jody and Buffy (or whatever names they gave the whales) withstood all sorts of trials and tribulations and survived their long trip.

Check out this link for some myth busting:
http://www.snopes.com/disney/films/lemmings.asp

The basic moral is that filming "real" wild animals is very difficult and the results of true reality would probably be very boring. So even to make movies as an alternate to locales like zoos and Sea World, captive animals are needed.

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:43 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

I am just not sure why we tend to feel so bad about saying we keep animals in zoos for our own entertainment.

Oh well, if that's your arguement, then I agree. I have no problem with animals being kept for entertainment purposes as long as they are not mistreated. Which happens in many animal releated educational and entertainment venues, and that's sad.

But I definitely don't have issues with animals being kept purely for entertainment. It's why we have pets.


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:49 PM

RatherGoodBear said:
The basic moral is that filming "real" wild animals is very difficult and the results of true reality would probably be very boring. So even to make movies as an alternate to locales like zoos and Sea World, captive animals are needed.

Wait... you're saying that because it's almost impossible to capture animals behaving normally in their natural habitat on film, we aren't really learning about these animals' true behavior.

But, we can learn by observing them behaving abnormally in an unnatural habitat? That's illogical.

Last edited by djDaemon, Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:50 PM

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:57 PM
rollergator's avatar

You cannot "naturally observe" that which is not normally naturally observable...took an enormous amount of time and money for NatGeo to capture all of ten seconds of Snow Leopard footage...

In short, you all got Schrödinger's kitty litter all OVER the place... ;)

Last edited by rollergator, Wednesday, October 6, 2010 3:57 PM

You still have Zoidberg.... You ALL have Zoidberg! (V) (;,,;) (V)

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:04 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

GoBucks89 said:


ApolloAndy said:



djDaemon said:
and as alternative means of conveying information about them become more effective.

My point was that HD TV compared to old school TV doesn't even register on the scale of TV vs. real life in terms of quality of experience, even if the HD TV can show you the animal in it's actual habitat doing more than sleeping.

You missed the point again. I think we non-animal-studying scientists can learn more about animals watching them in their natural habitats doing what they do naturally on a non-HDTV than we can seeing them in cages/pens in zoos. That is not to say that there isn't some value in seeing animals in person. And I understand that a lot of folks need to see something in person to really care about it or get interested in it. Often times I think that is just something weak and dumb in our species.

And you missed my point, which was that learning is much larger than facts and knowledge. Personal experience with the subject matter is a huge part of learning.

Whether or not it's weak and dumb (I completely disagree that it is but that's about as subjective as something can be), it is reality - for me, for you, and for every human being. Within that reality, it is beneficial for people to have personal experiences with a variety of animals.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:04 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

^^That's not what I got out of it at all. If I'm correct, your arguement is that Zoos are becoming less and less 'needed', mostly from a moral standpoint, because we have the information we need to learn about animals, so it's boardering on immoral to keep animals in Zoos. And there was some talk about how we don't see animals in Zoos in their natural environment anywho.

RGB was pointing out that regardless of whether we see them in a Zoo or on a nature program, we're not observing them in their natural habitat.

I personally don't see Zoos being any more morally wrong (or even heading in that direction) than keeping animals as pets.

Last edited by Tekwardo, Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:05 PM

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:06 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

rollergator said:
You cannot "naturally observe" that which is not normally naturally observable...took an enormous amount of time and money for NatGeo to capture all of ten seconds of Snow Leopard footage...

In short, you all got Schrödinger's kitty litter all OVER the place... ;)

Heisenberg is laughing right now. Or is he? Is it possible to know?


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:12 PM

Tekwardo said:
RGB was pointing out that regardless of whether we see them in a Zoo or on a nature program, we're not observing them in their natural habitat.

OK, then I agree. Which means there's little value in keeping most animals in zoos.

I personally don't see Zoos being any more morally wrong (or even heading in that direction) than keeping animals as pets.

That's a blanket statement. For example, I think it's immoral to keep a bird as a pet, unless that bird is kept outdoors, and allowed to fly around some sort of habitat. Same with fish, reptiles, gerbils and so on.

On the other hand, I have no moral objection to keeping domesticated animals as pets, so long you aren't keeping a 200 lb. Rottweiler in your 700 square foot apartment, for example.


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:16 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

That's not a blanket statement, that's an opinion. I don't think it's immoral to keep an animal as a pet as long as it isn't mistreated, much like I don't care if animals are kept in zoos as long as they're not mistreated.

If you morally object, that's okay, but most everyone else doesn't :).

And as far as zoos go, I don't think that's an issue either, because they can be used for entertainment.

Again, we get into personal morals. You're okay with pot, I'm not. You're not okay with certain animals being kept, and I am. It all comes down to personal choices.

Last edited by Tekwardo, Wednesday, October 6, 2010 4:19 PM

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