Here is Takara’s tragic story. She was born at SeaWorld San Diego to parents who had been captured from their home waters near Iceland in 1978. Kasatka, her mother, died in 2017 at SeaWorld San Diego, reportedly from a bacterial lung infection from which she’d been suffering since at least 2008. And Takara’s father, Kotar, died when she was only 3 years old, after a pool gate closed on his head and fractured his skull. Even though wild orcas often live with their mothers for life, she was taken from hers when she was only 12 years old.
Her first two babies were also taken from her: Her daughter Kohana (conceived with the sperm of Tilikum) lives at Loro Parque in Spain; her son, Trua, lives at SeaWorld Orlando in Florida; and her youngest surviving daughters, Sakari and Kamea, live with her at SeaWorld San Antonio. So her family is dispersed among various SeaWorld parks and a park in Spain formerly associated with the company. As you can see, SeaWorld has no problem shipping orcas here and there when it suits its bottom line.
@SeaWorld Hi, quick question: are the orcas in the photo you tweeted on the 15th Takara and Kohana? pic.twitter.com/LASELB8Tko Thanks.
— The Dodo (@dodo) January 17, 2014
Takara was impregnated again with Tilikum’s sperm in 2009 while at SeaWorld Orlando and sent to Texas while pregnant, causing her to be separated from Trua when he was only 3 years old. She gave birth to Sakari in 2010.
In December 2013, she gave birth to her fourth calf, Kamea. Again, she’d been raped via artificial insemination—this time with the sperm of Kshamenk, who lives alone at the Argentinean marine park Mundo Marino.
While at SeaWorld San Antonio, Takara became friendly with an orca named Unna and spent a lot of time with her, but Unna died of a fungal infection when she was only 18 years old in December 2015.
On March 17, 2016, SeaWorld announced that Takara was pregnant with her fifth calf. She gave birth to daughter Kyara in April 2017. On July 24, 2017, SeaWorld announced that 3-month-old Kyara was dead. The news came after the park had announced only a few days prior that she had an infection (likely pneumonia) and moved her to a husbandry pool, away from Takara. Like so many captive orcas before her, she died without the comfort of her mother or any other family members.
What You Can Do
Join the call for SeaWorld to release Takara and all the other orcas it still holds captive into seaside sanctuaries today.