The spot, which features the leading text "Could you live in a bathtub for 40 years?," is meant to raise awareness of the orca Lolita - who for over 40 years, has lived alone at the Miami Seaquarium. From the site:
In nature, where Lolita's mother still thrives at more than 80 years of age, orcas live in tight family units, with bonds that may last a lifetime. At the Seaquarium, Lolita swims in endless circles in a tiny barren cement tank. This highly intelligent and social wild animal has been without an orca companion since 1980, when her tank mate, Hugo, died of a brain aneurysm after reportedly ramming his head into the side of their tank, in what many believe to be a desperate attempt to break out of the tank—or even commit suicide.
As if Lolita's situation couldn't get any worse, her tank at the marine park is only 35 feet wide - for a 20-foot-long whale.
"For me the way she's been incarcerated for all these years is just wrong on so many levels," De Moura told NBC Miami
. (In De Moura's home country of Brazil, keeping marine mammals in captivity has been illegal since the '90s.) "How would you feel if your child was taken away from you captured and used for pure entertainment?"
Despite constant pressure to free Lolita - or simply update her holding pen - the Miami Seaquarium refuses to acknowledge anything is wrong.
"Moving Lolita in any way, whether to a new pool, a sea pen or to the open waters of the Pacific Northwest, would be an experiment," they wrote in a statement to NBC Miami. "And it is a risk with her life that we are not willing to take. There is no scientific evidence that the 48 year-old post-reproductive Lolita could survive if she was returned to the ocean."
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