Last week SeaWorld Orlando shared the heartbreaking news that Kayla, their 30-year-old killer whale born and raised in captivity, had passed away after showing signs of an unknown illness. This week, the Florida park shares news that another whale is ill.
According to their blog post made earlier this week, it is a rescued female pilot whale named Fredi who is unwell. She is the same whale who has battled continued health issues since her mass stranding and rescue in 2011. Currently, she is being treated for a persistent infection.
This animal was a part of a mass stranding of approximately 24 pilot whales that occurred in 2011 in the Florida Keys. The post recounts that eight of the stranded animals initially survived; two were lifted onto a barge and returned 40 miles off the coast. The remaining 14 animals perished on the beach, despite the 24/7 tireless efforts of the dedicated teams.
After several weeks of hard work and dedication by the staff members at the Marine Mammal Conservancy, only two whales survived - both of which were transported to SeaWorld Orlando, one of the whales was Fredi.
Unfortunately, mass strandings of pilot whales are not uncommon. There was just a mass stranding of over 100 whales observed in Australia.
While SeaWorld is often a target of animal rights organizations, this marine park does a lot to save and rehabilitate animals like Fredi.
SeaWorld has been involved in the rescue of more than 33,000 animals and their main goal is to rehabilitate and release when possible. If releasing is not possible then they do what they can to comfortably accommodate the animals.
"Fredi has lived the past eight years at SeaWorld with a pod of rescued pilot whales and received world-class care and a second chance she would not have had otherwise," a portion of the blog post reads.
Fredi is one of four pilot whales at the park - each of which has helped their own species survive by providing critical data not accessible in the wild. Check out a video of them below:
Right now the outlook of Fredi's condition is still uncertain according to her veterinarians, and SeaWorld has yet to update the public on any changes in her condition.
To learn more about Fredi and SeaWorld's conservation and rescue efforts, you can click here.
Cover photo used for illustrative purposes only.