SeaWorld Orca 'Morgan' Beached Herself For 10 Minutes Following May Performance

Nancy Bailey

A SeaWorld-owned orca has been garnering worldwide attention after beaching herself on a concrete slab for more than 10 minutes following a performance.

The orca, named Morgan, had been captured from the wild in the Netherlands in 2010 and never fit in with the captive group. Reportedly bullied by other orcas, it appears that she will jump out of the water to escape from harassment from the other whales.

If whales lie on the ground too long, the weight of their bodies can crush their internal organs and muscles.

After Morgan was taken from the wild in 2010, she was transferred to captivity at a Dutch theme park. She was initially supposed to be released back to the wild after only six months, but that plan changed. In 2011, she was moved to Loro Parque in Spain, a theme park whose cetaceans are owned by SeaWorld.

— Orca S※O※S (@OrcaSOS) June 7, 2016

Loro Parque said the beaching is not unusual for orca behavior, according to Stuff.

"It is absolutely clear, that this declaration represents nothing more than a campaign launched by the anti-zoo activists that do not really pursue the well-being of the animals.

"A voluntary stranding is a natural behaviour of orcas living in the wild."

"A voluntary stranding is a natural behaviour of orcas living in the wild."

— Sky News (@SkyNews) June 6, 2016

Visser argued with the park's statement about beaching.

"Despite Loro Parque's comment that this is 'totally natural behaviour' they are judging that based only on the compromised situation with keeping orca in tanks.

"Nowhere in the world do any wild orca slide out onto concrete platforms."

"Nowhere in the world do any wild orca slide out onto concrete platforms."

Visser said that Morgan's situation has continued to worsen since she was taken from the wild as a young whale, estimated between two and three years old. Life in the tank has been tough for Morgan.

"She is kept with the most dysfunctional group of orca in the world."

Keto is not good company, according to Visser, as he now continuously bullies and sexually harasses Morgan.

Concerned activists started the Free Morgan Foundation and created a four-minute film, I am Morgan ~ Stolen Freedom. The movie recently won the Audience Choice Award, category "Inspirational" film, at the Top Shorts Online Film Festival 2016.

SeaWorld's stocks have been on a drastic downward trend, despite their 2016 announcement that they were ending whale entertainment shows and plan to stop breeding orcas.

— Nancy J. Bailey (@cliffysmom) May 11, 2016

Attendance to the park has declined following massive protest over the captivity of whales.

Animal activists are calling out SeaWorld to release Morgan, offering up World Oceans Day as the prime opportunity to make the announcement.

United Nations Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission celebrates World Oceans Day annually on June 8.

— Stuff.co.nz News (@NZStuff) June 8, 2016

A petition to release Morgan has accumulated nearly 70,000 signatures. It states that the orca's DNA and vocalizations have been matched to a wild pod in the Netherlands where she was captured, presumably her family.

Other ways to help Morgan are listed on FreeMorgan.org.

[Image via Dmitry Eagle Orlov/Shutterstock]

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