USDA Looking Into Dolphin Deaths At SeaWorld

USDA Looking Into Dolphin Deaths At SeaWorld

By Sandra Pedicini, Orlando Sentinel (TNS)

ORLANDO, Fla. — A division of the United States Department of Agriculture is looking into two dolphin deaths at SeaWorld, including one earlier this week, a spokeswoman for the agency said.

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service looks into certain deaths –- such as if an animal is young and dies unexpectedly — to see if there were any Animal Welfare Act violations.

Lagos, a 7-year-old bottlenose dolphin, died suddenly Monday of what appeared to be pneumonia. It had previously shown no signs of illness but late Sunday became reluctant to eat.

In March, another bottlenose dolphin died of what was deemed “acute intestinal necrosis.” That dolphin was 22. SeaWorld spokeswoman Becca Bides said in an email that “diseases that can cause this unfortunate condition have a rapid on-set and also are found in wild marine mammals.”

“We care for more than 89,000 animals, including 88 bottlenose dolphins here in Orlando,” Bides wrote. “We have dolphins in our parks that are nearly 50 and some, unfortunately, pass away at an earlier age.”

Bides went on to say that “the animals in our care all benefit from world-class veterinary care that is highly regulated by the federal government and reaffirmed by the strict accreditation process of two professional zoological organizations.”

APHIS also probed the February death of a beluga whale at SeaWorld that died of an infection of the jaw tissues. It had fractured the jaw during an “interaction” with another beluga, according to SeaWorld. APHIS found no Animal Welfare Act violations.

Photo: This is one sad dolphin. Christine A. via Flickr


Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Kevin McCarthy

Speaker Kevin McCarthy

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy suffered yet another loss on Thursday, one that no speaker should ever experience. Five of his Republican colleagues rebelled against sending the defense appropriations bill to the floor, and blocked it. Again. These things aren’t supposed to happen in the House. Speakers don’t put a bill on the floor when they don’t have the votes locked up. A controlling bloc of the majority doesn’t vote against leadership. Republicans don’t vote against defense spending.

Keep reading...Show less
Rupert Murdoch

Rupert Murdoch

This week New York Magazine published a sprawling account of the lead-up to former Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s ouster from the network, detailing Rupert Murdoch’s state of “denial” surrounding the $787.5 million dollar settlement his company was forced to pay to Dominion Voting Systems.

Murdoch on Thursday announced he was stepping down as chairman of Fox and News Corp.

Dominion Voting Systems successfully sued Fox News for defamation after the network accused the company of rigging voting machines to steal votes from former President Donald Trump during the 2020 presidential election. In April 2023, Fox News agreed to pay Dominion $787.5 million and acknowledged, in a statement, “the court’s rulings finding certain claims about Dominion to be false."

Keep reading...Show less
{{ }}