Saturday, February 27, 2010

Killer whale kills trainer footage?

Tilikum had a marked history, however. The whale, along with two female killer whales drowned Keltie Byrne, a trainer, in 1991 at a British Columbia park and in 1999, Tilikum killed a man who had sneaked into the SeaWorld tank after hours to swim with whales.

Russ Rector, an animal-rights activist, tells the Sentinel that Tilikum did not belong at a theme park.
"Tilikum is a killer," Rector told the paper. "If this had been a dog that killed Keltie Byrne, it would have been put down."

Folks are desperately searching the Internets and Webs for video footage of the Sea World killer whale who killed a human the other day. The Dawn Brancheau attack home video is becoming a sort of grail for search engine jockeys. So far search arguments like "killer whale attack video 2010" and "killer whale kills trainer footage" have come up empty. Some sites purport to have and may even have video of events shortly before the deadly Shamu attack but nobody's come forward with the real thing.

I doubt that I'm the first to point this out, but if there were available video of the complete event it would be all over the Internets. TV networks might not be showing the good parts, but there's no doubt that prurience would have its day.

Same orca involved in other deaths.

Tilikum has been previously connected to two other human deaths. He was one of three whales blamed for killing a trainer in 1991 at Sealand of the Pacific in Victoria, British Columbia.

A man's body was also found draped over Tilikum at SeaWorld Orlando in July 1999. Daniel Dukes reportedly made his way past security at SeaWorld and either jumped, fell or was pulled into the frigid water of Tilikum's huge tank.

An autopsy ruled that he died of hypothermia, but authorities said it appeared Tilikum bit the man and tore off his swimming trunks.

Other killer whale attacks have occurred in SeaWorld parks.

In November 2006, trainer Kenneth Peters, 39, was bitten and held underwater several times by a 7,000-pound killer whale during a show at SeaWorld's San Diego park. He escaped with a broken foot.
The 17-foot-long orca who attacked him was the dominant female of SeaWorld San Diego's seven killer whales. She had attacked Peters on two prior occasions, in 1993 and 1999.

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