Lolita 47th Capture Anniversary Protest August 8, 2017

BY ALEXANDRIA BORDAS
abordas@miamiherald.com

AUGUST 08, 2017 8:01 PM

Lolita Protest 8-8-2017The latest in a years-long string of protests at Miami Seaquarium took place Tuesday, which happened to be the 47th anniversary of the capture of Lolita, a killer whale that has long been at the center of an international animal rights campaign.

Only about 30 activists showed up this time, managing to hang in for nearly two hours under the blistering sun. Though few in number, some had come a long way to make their case: Free Lolita.

Miami SeaQuarium Protest

Empty The Tanks 2017 – Miami SeaQuarium (May 13, 11-2pm)

We had a great turnout at this year's Empty The Tanks Protest. These folks turned around more than 40 families from visiting the Miami SeaQuarium.

Come out and join us every Sunday from 12-2pm, just bring yourself, we have plenty of signs.

Empty The Tanks 2016 – Miami SeaQuarium (5/7/2016 11-2pm)

Empty The Tanks 2016This is a day for everyone around the world to stand up against marine mammal captivity. The abuse and exploitation of these sentient beings has no place in the 21st century.

On May 7th, 2016, protests and educational events will be held all over the world in front of marine mammal parks and aquariums. If the park is exploiting marine mammals for entertainment and profit then we want people out front creating noise and awareness. The only way to close their doors for good is to get the general public to stop buying tickets. We need your voice, your posters, and your dedication to seeing an end to the captivity industry.

Lolita’s Release Plan – The Only One That Makes Sense

Orca ConservancyThere are a number of different organizations that over the years have devised rehabilitation and release plans for Lolita (TokiTae). Some of these plans from the outside look promising, but are they really?

It’s easy to create a document, call it a plan, and get everyone on board to endorse and support it. This was the case with one organization which will go unnamed. They collected donations for decades from caring and compassionate people from around the world. They also created a seemingly well thought out release plan. Many organizations and animal advocates supported and promoted this plan, that is until recently.

Lolita Miami SeaQuarium September 6, 2014 – Aerial Footage

This aerial footage was taken on September 6, 2014 over the Miami SeaQuarium showing a trainer clearly entering the water with Lolita. The Miami SeaQuarium and its new owners (Palace Entertainment & Parques Reunidos) and old management (Andrew Hertz) are blatantly disregarding Federal OSHA regulations by putting their trainers in unprotected contact with a killer whale.

The Miami SeaQuarium was fined $7,000 in June of this year for allowing trainers in the water with Lolita. At that time SeaQuarium management stated they will continue to allow trainers in the water because they feel Lolita has not hurt anyone while in captivity. This is a blatant lie and there are documented incidents where Lolita has shown aggressive behavior towards her trainers.

We will continue to monitor and report these violations to the Federal Government, namely OSHA. No one is exempt from the Law!

#FREELOLITA

Lolita August 2, 2014 – Miami SeaQuarium – Free Lolita!

This video was taken on 8-2-2014 over the Miami SeaQuarium showing Lolita (Tokitae) all alone after her first performance of the day. It’s heartbreaking knowing she has been performing stupid tricks 2 to 3 times per day for the past 44 years. She was brutally ripped from the ocean on August 8, 1970 and a month later transported to her prison called the Miami SeaQuarium. Some of her family is still alive today and with about 80 Southern Residents remaining and listed on the Endangered Species Act (ESA), Lolita is not. We are all hopeful the National Marine Fisheries Service will add her to the ESA in the beginning of next year. Until then we will keep a vigilant watch over her and continue to create awareness and educate patrons of the Miami SeaQuarium of her plight.

To the new owners of the SeaQuarium (Palace Entertainment & Parques Reunidos) and the old (Arthur & Andrew Hertz, amongst others), we are not going anywhere until she is returned to a sea pen near her native waters where you took her from in 1970!

#FREELOLITA

Miami SeaQuarium Slapped With $7,000 OSHA Fine

Andrew HertzAnimal Legal Defense Fund Complaint Results in OSHA Fine for Miami Seaquarium

Seaquarium Will Pay $7000 for Endangering Trainers in the Water with Captive Orca Lolita

For immediate release:

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited and fined the Miami Seaquarium for putting trainers in the water with an orca named Lolita, thereby violating worker safety laws. The national nonprofit Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) sent a formal complaint about this issue to OSHA on December 11, 2013. In a recent investigation, OSHA found trainers working with Lolita were exposed to various lethal hazards. The agency has required Seaquarium to remove its trainers from engaging in “wet work and dry work performances” in the pool. Because of the serious nature of the violation OSHA is fining the Miami Seaquarium $7,000.

Hundreds of Protestors Converge on The Miami SeaQuarium – Empty The Tanks 2014

Today more than 200 hundred activists and concerned citizens came out to the Miami SaeQuarium to demonstrate against marine mammal captivity. Lolita (aka Tokitae) has been confined to a small tank at the Miami SeaQuarium for almost 44 years. Lolita, along with other marine mammals like dolphins and sea lions are forced to perform tricks throughout the day and live out miserable lives of imprisonment.

Around the country and the world similar demonstrations were taking place at marine parks and aquariums as part of Empty The Tanks Worldwide. Empty the Tanks Worldwide was created when Rachel Carbary, a Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Cove Guardian, who has traveled to Taiji, Japan to stand in opposition to the Taiji Dolphin Drive Hunt for the past two dolphin hunting seasons, had an idea to galvanize people into a worldwide event focused on ending marine mammal captivity.

Empty The Tanks – A Worldwide Protest! May 24, 2014

Lolita confined to a tiny tank at the Miami SeaQuarium (Photo Credit - Chris Lagergren)

Lolita confined to a tiny tank at the Miami SeaQuarium (Photo Credit – Chris Lagergren)

This is the 2nd annual Empty the Tanks protest. This is a day for everyone around the world to stand up against marine mammal captivity. The abuse and exploitation of these sentient beings has no place in the 21st century.

On May 24th, protests and educational events will be held all over world in front of marine mammal parks and aquariums. If the park is exploiting marine mammals for entertainment and profit then we want people out front creating noise and awareness. The only way to close their doors for good is to get the general public to stop buying tickets. We need your voice, your posters, and your dedication to seeing an end to the captivity industry.

Retire Lolita! Provide Comments to NMFS Regarding ESA Language

lolita miami seaquariumThis is a huge step in the right direction!

The government has opened up their initial ruling to change the ESA language so that Lolita would become protected under the Endangered Species Act like the rest of her family. NMFS is asking for public comments over the next 2 months, let’s give it to them because you know the other side will be submitting their arguments why this not a good idea!

 

This is her last hope!! Please invite your friends to this event! https://www.facebook.com/events/1442245159341081/

1,800+ comments last time of which 13 were deemed useful by NMFS and enough for the Government to propose removing the captive restriction for Lolita! They’ve opened this up to Scientific Community, the Commercial industry (aka the Captivity Industry) and Us!

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