A new PETA video from television icon Bob Barker issues a 2018 challenge to the Miami Seaquarium: Allow Lolita, the lone orca at the park, to be released into a seaside sanctuary where she could feel ocean currents and communicate with her family.
“Lolita was torn away from her family decades ago and has lived in captivity for more than 47 lonely years,” Barker says in the video, which will air during The Price Is Right in Los Angeles this month. “At Miami Seaquarium, her barren, concrete, and chemically treated enclosure is the smallest orca tank in the world.”
PETA — whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” — notes that Lolita has had no orca companionship since 1980, when her tankmate, Hugo, died from injuries sustained when he rammed his head into the tiny tank’s concrete wall. For 37 years, she hasn’t had contact with any other member of her species. At a sanctuary in her home waters, she could interact with her family pod, including the orca believed to be her mother, who is still thriving in her 80s.
“[E]nough is enough,” Barker concludes. “Miami Seaquarium, please, make your New Year’s resolution to release Lolita to a seaside sanctuary in 2018. Do not let her spend one more year in captivity.”