Why Is This State Attorney Failing to Act on Miami Seaquarium's Alleged Cruelty to Animals?

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Because orcas are highly social and complex animals with vast home ranges, they’re particularly vulnerable to suffering in captivity. Yet Lolita has languished for over a half-century in a cramped tank at the Miami Seaquarium. PETA has urged Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle to investigate this hideous abusement park for cruelty, but after over a year of delays, her office has taken no action.

Despite Lolita’s highly endangered status, she’s confined to a small, shallow, barren concrete tank without even adequate protection from the sun. She’s been without the companionship of another orca since 1980, when her tankmate, Hugo, died after repeatedly ramming his head into a wall. She can’t engage in any behavior that is natural to an orca, like diving, swimming any meaningful distance, feeling ocean currents, and forming social relationships with members of her own species.

Marine-mammal experts can attest that the complete deprivation of all that is natural and important to Lolita causes her extreme and unnecessary stress, torment, injury, and suffering, an apparent violation of Florida’s cruelty-to-animals law and a form of speciesism—a human-supremacist worldview.

Please join PETA in urging Rundle to investigate the Miami Seaquarium for cruelty to animals NOW—no more delays or Lolita will die in this same tank, under these same conditions, having been deprived of some semblance of a real life for 50 long years.

Katherine Fernandez
Miami-Dade State Attorney

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