MIAMI, United States. — Lolita, the well-known orca whale that has remained for decades in the Miami aquarium, will soon be returned to its natural habitat, the chain reported NBCNews.
According to the American media, a plan was announced this Thursday for the cetacean to return to the Pacific Ocean, where it was captured more than five decades ago. The goal is for Lolita to go to her natural habitat so she can live there for the rest of her days.
Lolita was captured in 1970 in the waters of the state of Washington, in the northeastern United States, and sold to the Miami Seaquarium for $20,000 when she was just about four years old. Currently, it is estimated that the orca is about 57 years old, which makes it the oldest specimen to be kept in captivity.
The decision to return it to its habitat comes after decades of protests promoted by animal rights organizations and also numerous lawsuits launched against the Miami Seaquarium for keeping the cetacean confined in a pool 18 meters long and 6 meters deep. Max deep.
According to the last medical examination carried out in February by two independent veterinarians, Lolita has recovered from the serious infection that has afflicted her for the past year. In this sense, the report indicates that the orca shows signs of “significant improvement and better health.”
The news generated a reaction from the organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which celebrated the initiative.
“If Lolita is finally returned to her home waters, there will be applause from around the world, including from PETA, which has pursued several lawsuits on Lolita’s behalf and held many protests demanding her release over the years. If the Seaquarium agrees to move her, it will offer her her long-awaited relief after five miserable decades in a cramped tank and send a clear signal to other parks that the days of confining highly intelligent, long-range marine mammals to bleak prisons are over.” , said the organization in a release.