Thursday 23 February 2017

Killer whale at centre of legal battle takes air trip to new home

Toby Sterling in Tenerife

A young killer whale at the centre of a legal battle waged by Dutch conservationists has arrived at its new home on the Canary Islands.

The 1,400kg female orca named Morgan was flown from the Netherlands to the island of Tenerife yesterday.

The whale, estimated to be three years old, was rescued off the Netherlands in 2010. The Dutch government permit said a Dutch dolphinarium could hold her and restore her health so she could be released. But the dolphinarium team of experts found she had little chance of survival in the wild unless her family could be identified.

Authorities then decided she should be transferred to Loro Parque, which already has several orcas.

Opposing experts for the Free Morgan group said the dolphinarium was guided by financial interests, rather than concern for the animal's well-being, and proposed reintroducing her into the wild. A female capable of breeding into the pool of captive orcas is worth millions of euro.

Irish Independent

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