In 1970, a Southern resident killer whale was captured in a cove off Seattle. Named Lolita, she was taken to the Miami Seaquarium and then kept in captivity for our entertainment for the next 53 years.
After years of fighting, it was announced that Lolita will be returned to the waters from where she was taken.
Taken from her mother and her seven siblings at age four, Lolita arrived at the Miami Seaquarium for a fee of just €5,500.
While many other animals died in the facility, Lolita performed tirelessly until falling ill last year - all while living in the world's smallest orca tank.
Now, plans are in place to return her to the ocean, where her mother is believed to still live. Returning a whale to the ocean after half a century in captivity isn’t a simple thing, however. When a whale is either born in captivity or taken early, it never has the chance to learn what it takes to survive in the wild.
“We are working toward and hope the relocation will be possible in the next 18 to 24 months,” a press release reads. “At present, Lolita receives round-the-clock care by a team of dedicated, highly-skilled, medical, nutrition and behavior experts.
Source: The Inertia