Morgan’s Calf Named! Together with mother again

January 13, 2019


On Sunday, December 3, 2017, this newspaper EL  DÍA offered through El Cotarro , in scoop and exclusive, the great news that the already popular and beloved orca Morgan  del Loro Parque, was pregnant (4 months). And we said that the tireless Wolfgang Kiessling,  founder and president of the Loro Parque Group, ordered the development of a super special protocol and operative, to properly and specifically attend to what would be a “first-time mother”. From the first moment and during the 17 months! that the pregnancy has lasted, the own Wolfgang Kiessling , along with the doctor in Sciences of the Sea and director of Loro Park Foundation, Javier Almunia, they were waiting for Morgan until September 22, 2018, the day on which a wonderful orca baby was born that, over time, has been known to be a female and that today, also in scoop and exclusive, I can announce It will be called Ula , a name of Celtic origin that means “jewel of the sea”. Remember that Morgan , was rescued after being found dying on the coast of the Wadden Sea (Holland) and that Loro Parque welcomed her at the request of the Dutch Justice. Today Morgan  and Ula  are from Tenerife and live happily in Loro Parque.

Source: Elcotarro.com

Advertisements

Update: Morgan’s Calf

October 15, 2018

Announcement from Loro Parque: 

We are pleased to report that Morgan’s calf is continuing to gain weight and is growing stronger every day. Morgan’s milk production has been lower than what is required to meet the young calf’s nutritional needs, so it has been necessary to introduce regular bottle feeding. That decision is already showing positive results and the team of experts who are monitoring the calf around the clock are encouraged by its physical and mental progress as the young orca swims and plays.

While we would rather see Morgan able to breastfeed, the health and wellbeing of the calf are the top priority. In the wild, orca calves do not survive if their mothers are unable to produce enough milk.

Fortunately – thanks to our world-leading facilities, vets, and consultants – we can provide the calf with a specialized and nutritious formula consisting of milk, blended fish, and other essential vitamins and ingredients that are combined with the milk Morgan is able to produce. The formula has been developed by marine mammal veterinarians and animal nutritionists and it is clear that the calf is feeling the benefits.

In the interests of safety for mother, calf, and the experts assisting them, while bottle feeding takes place the pair are currently in different pools immediately adjacent to one another. Both mother and calf show signs they are relaxed and comfortable while this period of bottle feeding takes place.We offer our heartfelt thanks once again for the continued messages of support. The team will continue to provide updates as and when we have new information.

Update: Morgan’s calf – separated again?

October 1, 2018

Update from the Loro Parque Blog: 

It’s now just over a week since Morgan gave birth and the entire team of carers, veterinarians, and international experts who have been monitoring the situation are delighted with the calf’s progress. The primary focus continues to be ensuring that the calf is getting all the nourishment it needs and the team has been concerned that Morgan’s milk production has been lower than required.

While natural breastfeeding is always the preferred option, nothing is more important than the wellbeing of the animals in our care – so the veterinary team has stepped in to assist at times by temporarily bottle feeding the calf.

Despite continuous attempts to help Morgan feed naturally, her milk production remains low. As a result, the only option has been to move the calf over to regular bottle feeds. Thanks to Loro Parque’s world-leading facilities and the help of the world’s top experts, we are able add the small amount of milk that Morgan is producing daily to the bottled formula feed, which is provided in a special dedicated medical pool. Using Morgan’s milk helps enrich each meal the calf receives and provides the vital antibodies that aid the development of its immune system.

Despite the challenges in breastfeeding, the bond between mother and calf continues to grow and Morgan is demonstrating exemplary maternal instincts as she swims alongside her calf at all times they are together.

We know from the many messages of support we continue to receive that many of you are closely following this news, so we will keep providing updates as and when we have new information.

  • The post seems to indicate that while Morgan’s calf has been back on bottle feedings in the med pool that she is also being allowed time with Morgan? However no images have surfaced yet of Morgan and her calf together since the time of the birth. The only images I have found are of the calf being bottle feed alone in the med pool. – As close as mothers and calves are for the first several months following birth it seems doubt that the two have been placed back together, otherwise Morgan would have likely entered the med pool with her daughter during feedings.
Image may contain: ocean, sky, outdoor, water and nature

Morgan and her calf have been reunited

September 27, 2018

Announcement from the Loro Parque Blog:

Nothing matters more to us than the health and wellbeing of the animals in our care. As we updated earlier this week, a team of veterinarians and external consultants has been monitoring the progress of Morgan and her calf around the clock since birth.

The primary focus during these crucial first days has been ensuring the calf is getting all the nourishment it needs. While natural breastfeeding is always the preferred option, Morgan’s milk production has been below what is needed in these first few days. Therefore, the veterinary team has assisted by temporarily bottle feeding the calf while giving Morgan the chance to increase her milk supply.

We are glad to say that mother and calf have now resumed natural breastfeeding and the experts are pleased with the strong bond the pair have developed. With the help of our state-of-the-art facilities and assistance from world-leading experts, the team continues to closely observe the situation to ensure that Morgan and her baby establish a good, healthy and natural feeding routine. However, we are, of course, ready to step in to help if there is the slightest concern that the calf’s nutritional needs are not being met.

We wish to thank everyone who has been in contact with us in these past few days and have been touched by the many messages of support. We will keep you posted with all the latest information as things unfold.

Update on Morgan and her calf

September 24, 2018

From Loro Parque Blog

The first days in the life of a cetacean are critical and we have all been encouraged by Morgan’s strong maternal instincts and the way she is nurturing and taking care of her calf. Establishing breastfeeding is crucial in this early phase and our team of veterinarians and external consultants are closely monitoring both mother and calf to see that this happens. Over the first 24 hours Morgan’s milk production has been lower than we would like, meaning it may be necessary to introduce bottle feeding to ensure that the calf is getting the nourishment it needs. We sincerely hope that nature can take its course and that Morgan can feed her calf independently. However, we are watching the situation carefully and will assist with bottle feeding, if the experts consider that the life of the calf is at risk.

We wish to take this opportunity to say thank you for all the kind messages we have received from all over the world as we celebrate the birth of Morgan’s calf. We will continue to provide updates as they enjoy their first days together.

VIDEO of Loro Parque explaining the situation to guests

Morgan gave birth to her calf at Loro Parque (with vid)

September 22, 2017

Birth announcement was posted on Loro Parque’s blog.

Loro Parque has good news to share: the orca Morgan that was rescued after being found near dead near the coast of the Wadden Sea in the Netherlands and that forms part of our group of orcas, gave birth to her first calf this morning, which finds itself in a perfect state of health. From the very first moment, Morgan demonstrated to be an exemplary mother attending to her newborn, which is swimming next to its mother in the installations of the ‘OrcaOcean’.

The orca Morgan was rescued at the coast of the Wadden Sea in 2010 and was attended by a team of experts of the Harderwijk Dolphinarium in an effort to help the lost animal, which showed such a severe malnutrition that the animal was only skin and bones. In this moment, Morgan only weighed 430 Kg and the keepers of the Dutch dolphinarium were not sure that the animal was going to survive the first night after its rescue. They, however, were hopeful that with a proper level of care, affection and attention of the care givers, as well as with the adequate nutrition, the animal could make a recovery.

Thanks to all these efforts of the team at Harderwijk, the animal began to recover its weight and strength, and as the Harderwijk installations were not prepared to keep orcas, the Dutch authorities initiated a formal commission to determine the future of the orca Morgan. A group of international and independent experts came to the conclusion that there were only two viable alternatives for the animal: euthanasia or to be kept at an installation of an aquarium that complied with the necessary conditions for this animal species.

At this moment, as Loro Parque had the most modern installations for orcas in existence, the Park was contacted to see if it would accept the animal. Despite all the challenges that this request represented, Loro Parque accepted the petition, thus, avoiding the only other alternative that was left for the animal: the euthanasia.

After a few months at our installations, the orca Morgan adapted to the new conditions and integrated perfectly into the existing group of orcas at Loro Parque. At the same time, it was discovered that the orca suffered a severe hearing deficiency, which was yet another argument to confirm that animal was incapable to survive on her own in nature.

Given this last circumstance, there were a number of questions as to what exactly a delivery would imply for the animal without a hearing capacity. Today, Loro Parque would like to share the great news: the delivery went in a completely normal manner and the first hours after the birth have been developing in accordance with the best expectations.

It is impossible to know the gender of the new calf yet, although the most important issue now is that both, the mother and the calf, find themselves in a perfect state of health. Loro Parque will be informing the public about the development of the situation, and would like to take this opportunity to thank all its visitors from many different parts of the world, the tour operators and all the collaborators in the scientific field for all the support to the Loro Parque mission: to protect and conserve animals and their natural habitats for future generations.

  • First VIDEO of Morgan and her calf can be found HERE. The calf seems to be having trouble finding the right spot to nurse from, she’s too high on Morgan’s body. 

Dutch government again urged to act to free Morgan the orca

August 25, 2016

Morgan in her Spanish tank. Photo: www.freemorgan.org

A group campaigning to have a ‘Dutch’ orca released from an amusement park on Tenerife have applied to have the key document which allowed her to be sent to Spain annulled, arguing that the terms of her transfer have been breached.

The orca Morgan was found in a severely weakened state in the Wadden Sea in 2010 and sent to the Dolphinarium in Harderwijk to recover.

The then-junior economic affairs minister Henk Bleker, who was responsible for Morgan, decided she could not be returned to the wild and she was sent to the Loro Parque in Spain instead. The financial terms of the move have never been revealed

The original European certificate approving the transfer stated that Morgan would be used for research purposes.

However, the orca now performs tricks for the public and there are severe concerns about her health, the Free Morgan Foundation says. For example, the condition of her teeth has deteriorated enormously compared to the time of her capture.

Earlier this year she was filmed deliberately beaching herself and bashing herself against the edge of a holding tank. In addition, the foundation is concerned efforts are being made to breed Morgan, which would also be in breach of the certificate.

They have now instructed Amsterdam law firm Van Den Biesen Kloostra Advocaten to apply to have the export licence annulled.

Source: www.dutchnews.nl

Root Canal: SeaWorld Gets Drilled In New Killer Whale Teeth Report

August 17, 2016

SeaWorld’s CEO Joel Manby has been all smiles since he and Wayne Pacelle, CEO of The Humane Society of the United States announced that their organizations had reached an agreement to end the captive breeding of killer whales at SeaWorld’s parks in California, Texas and Florida along with the six killer whales under SeaWorld’s care at Loro Parque in Spain. But when it comes to the killer whales themselves, they’re not smiling because there is something missing – their teeth.

Dentition as a Welfare Indicator

Do you  remember going to the dentist as a child for a checkup? Do you remember how happy you were if you didn’t have any cavities? Do you remember the sound of the dentist’s drill when you did?

A new report from the Free Morgan Foundation (FMF) examines the condition of killer whale teeth as a measure of their welfare in captivity. The report, Ongoing concerns regarding the SeaWorld orca held at Loro Parque, Tenerife, Spain provides extensive photographic documentation that chronicles the dentition of the six killer whales in SeaWorld’s care at Loro Parque. Based on the report, it appears that cavities are the least of their problems.

The authors of the report, Dr. Ingrid Visser and Rosina Lisker, visited Loro Parque in April of this year where they observed and photographed the killer whales over a period of three days. During their visit, Visser & Lisker received personal assurances by Dr. Javier Almunia of the Loro Parque Fundación and two Loro Parque veterinarians, that there were no health problems with the killer whales.

When specifically asked about the wild-born female Morgan, the authors were told she had no broken teeth:

All three employees denied that Morgan had any broken teeth. Subsequent to the authors’ visit, on 28 April 2016, Loro Parque posted on their official website blog the following text; “Dr. Visser asked about Morgan’s broken teeth, and the veterinarian staff confirmed that Morgan does not have broken teeth just abrasion in [sic] some of them.” [emphasis added].” (Visser & Lisker at p. 16.) 

The photographic evidence collected by Visser & Lisker, however, adds to the growing stack of documentation regarding welfare issues facing the killer whales held in that facility.

Morgan is of particular concern to Visser & Lisker because during her time in captivity beginning at Dolfinarium Harderwijk in 23 June 2010 and then at Loro Parque since 29 November 2011, she has suffered significant, progressive dental distress that would not have occurred had she been returned back to the ocean following her rehabilitation:

According to the authors, in 3 years, 10 months, 10 days, Morgan went from 0% severe damage of her right mandibular teeth to 75%. The report goes on to calculate that between 41.66% and 75% of the mandibular (lower jaw) teeth were moderately or severely damaged among the six killer whales observed at Loro Parque.

Drilling and Flushing – Superior Dental Care?

Drilling and daily flushing of killer whale teeth is portrayed as ‘superior dental care’ by Seaworld. But is it really? I asked former SeaWorld trainer John Jett Ph.D. to describe the daily dental care of killer whales from a trainer’s perspective:

We used a variable-speed drill, with a stainless drill bit that was disinfected with betadine prior to the drilling procedure. It was a Dremel brand drill like you can buy at a hardware store. The holes were flushed using a Waterpik filled with betadine. We would receive cases of 1,000mL bags of betadine from the animal care department, which we would cut with scissors and pour into the Waterpik basin in preparation for tooth flushes.” (John Jett Ph.D. July 2016)

Another former SeaWorld trainer, Jeffrey Ventre MD, gives further detail about pulpotomies, tooth flushing and the health impacts of dentition of killer whales in captivity in this video:

Five Freedoms

The welfare issues at Loro Parque extend far beyond the killer whales teeth. Visser & Lisker also asses the welfare of the killer whales through an analysis and discussion of the physical conditions at Loro Parque with respect to the ‘Five Freedoms’ of animal welfare:

  • FREEDOM FROM HUNGER AND THIRST.
  • FREEDOM FROM DISCOMFORT.
  • FREEDOM FROM PAIN, INJURY OR DISEASE.
  • FREEDOM TO EXPRESS NORMAL BEHAVIOR.
  • FREEDOM FROM FEAR AND DISTRESS.

These standards are internationally recognized as providing the absolute minimal requirement for an animal’s physical and mental well-being.

In the report, Visser & Lisker document violations of four of the ‘five freedoms’ of the killer whale’s welfare at Loro Parque. Their report also meticulously documents 23 violations of animal welfare standards affecting the killer whales at Loro Parque using the C-Well® welfare standards. (Visser & Lisker at p. 33.)

SeaWorld and the Humane Society

Wayne Pacelle is the CEO of HSUS, a position he has held since 2004.
Six years after he began working in that position, in November 2010, his organization wrote a letter to the US Government highlighting the animal welfare violations at Loro Parque. HSUS requested that the US Government act according to the letter of comity provision (the legal principle that nations will mutually recognize and respect each other’s laws) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). They requested to have the SeaWorld killer whales seized and repatriated back to the United States:

Therefore, it is imperative that NMFS and APHIS undertake an immediate investigation and make an official finding as to Loro Parque’s non-compliance so that NMFS can take action to seize the orcas or work with SeaWorld to arrange for their repatriation to the United States.” (HSUS letter 11 November 2010.)

The revelations in the Visser & Lisker (2016) report are stark and startling and reaffirm the validity of the HSUS welfare concerns raised in November 2010 about SeaWorld’s killer whales at Loro Parque.

This new report by the FMF has also been submitted to representatives of the US National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Office of Protected Resources
as a not so subtle reminder that it cannot wash its hands of responsibility for monitoring the conditions of the killer whales at Loro Parque through feigned ignorance and denial of readily verifiable facts and observable conditions.

The fact that SeaWorld keeps six of its claimed twenty-nine killer whales at an off-shore facility is a detail that is often overlooked, yet these individuals represent approximately 20 percent of SeaWorld’s entire killer whale collection.

Although Loro Parque is not owned by SeaWorld, the killer whales held there are ultimately under the care and responsibility of SeaWorld. Furthermore, as a consequence of the original transfer of four SeaWorld killer whales to Loro Parque in 2006, there is also a responsibility of the US Government pursuant to the MMPA to pay attention to the welfare conditions of the killer whales held at Loro Parque today. (See the FMF white paper on whale laundering.)

On 17 March 2016, SeaWorld and HSUS made an announcement – in partnership – that shook the very foundation of the marine theme park industry, setting in motion the beginning of a gradual phasing out of the commercial display of killer whales in captivity. But is that enough?

The HSUS policy position regarding SeaWorld’s killer whales at Loro Parque as expressed to the US Government in 2010 was powerful, principled and represented the humane mandate for the welfare of the killer whales, and of all animals, that the HSUS represents. It is a position that SeaWorld needs to fully embrace.

SeaWorld has a moral and legal obligation to these animals and must act to secure their welfare. “ (HSUS letter 11 November 2010.)

Whether the HSUS partnership with SeaWorld will result in a softening of HSUS’s stance on the deplorable welfare conditions that continue to plague the killer whales at Loro Parque is uncertain. No doubt, it is an important question that will have to be answered by HSUS – preferably with actions rather than words.

To that end, the FMF sent an “open letter” to Mr. Manby and Mr. Pacelle asking them to meet with the FMF regarding the situation at Loro Parque and to discuss a long term commitment to work together to return Morgan to the ocean in a controlled, natural environment. To date, neither Mr. Manby or Mr. Pacelle have responded to the FMF invitation to talk.

Morgan as Her Own Best Advocate

Ever since being taken from the wild in 2010, Morgan has commanded the public’s interest in an international spotlight. Over the course of the last several months, Morgan’s plight has increased public awareness and outrage over the welfare issues facing her and other killer whales in captivity.

Two recent viral videos show Morgan ramming her head into a heavy metal segregation gate while being confined in a small medical tank and also show her “hauling-out” onto the main performance stage for an extended period after a performance. This was apparently in an attempt to escape the aggression of SeaWorld’s other killer whales who are also held with Morgan at Loro Parque.

The stories of these two events spread across social media and received mainstream coverage, including National Geographic, Time, People, The Dodo, HuffPost UK, and in this exclusive television interview with former SeaWorld trainer Dr Jeffrey Ventre on Sky News with Kay Burley.

For their part, SeaWorld and Loro Parque have gone to great efforts to try to spin the story about Morgan, claiming that she is healthy and doing well in captivity and that the recent videos show normal behavior. However, in fact, they are quite alarming and such a response underscores the paradox of perception by those who want to continue to profit from the captivity of these sentient beings and those who wish to put an end to it.

The Visser & Lisker report draws attention to the clear and obvious issues of Morgan’s teeth and explains why the damage is due to confinement in a concrete tank. This report and Morgan’s plight continues to gain international attention with new in-depth articles about Morgan appearing in the Dutch news magazine Vrij Nederland and German newspaper Donaukurier in August.

Pain Relief?

The images of the killer whales teeth in the report speak for themselves.
They are graphic, indisputable and universally recognizable as “painful” to any person who has had a cavity, chipped, broken or lost a tooth, or had a tooth drilled by a dentist.

These latest revelations about SeaWorld’s killer whales has the potential to take yet another bite out of the bottom line of the struggling marine theme park industry as it continues to struggle with a public relations campaign, trying desperately to distance itself from the Blackfish effect.

On 4 August 2016, SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: SEAS) reported its financial results for the first half and second quarter of 2016. The results were not encouraging for investors. One analyst even suggested that SeaWorld should reinvest in the business, pinning its hopes on the addition of new roller coasters – not killer whales.

The world is rapidly changing and national and international laws and regulations and the government entities that are entrusted to enforce them, need to catch up to society’s expectations and demands. What happens next is anyone’s guess. But one thing is for sure, the Visser & Lisker report gives both government regulators and marine theme park executives something to chew on.

Source: www.huffingtonpost.com

SEAWORLD ORCA MORGAN IS DEAF, LEAPING OUT OF TANK TO ESCAPE BULLYING

Friday: June 10, 2016

Morgan the orca captured international attention when she was caught on video stranding herself on a concrete ledge by her pool. The beached killer whale lay there for at least 10 minutes, ignoring trainers’ signals to get back in the water.

Morgan’s actions created a firestorm of reactions on the internet, including speculation that the SeaWorld-owned orca was attempting suicide.

More of a stir was created on Wednesday when another video was released showing Morgan leaving the pool again, this time remaining beached for nine minutes. Eventually, she does return to the water, but she is back on the ledge again 42 seconds later. Witnesses describe her being body-slammed by the other whales in the pool.

The new video caused more talk of orca suicide. But Morgan, according to experts cited by National Geographic, is likely trying to save her life rather than end it.

Ingrid Visser, a marine biologist with the Orca Research Trust in New Zealand, said that Morgan is escaping attacks by beaching herself.

“She’s coming out to avoid antagonistic behavior from other orcas.”

“She is kept with the most dysfunctional group of orca in the world.”

The orca lives in a tank with other whales who were allegedly never evaluated for social compatibility.

One of Morgan’s tank mates is Keto, a male featured in the movie Blackfish, who killed his trainer Alexis Martinez in 2009.

Keto is a 20-year-old male bull orca who was known as a “punk” when he was younger, according to the site Cetacousin. Keto was born at SeaWorld in Orlando and was moved from there when he was 3-and-a-half-years-old, in order to “correct his bad habits.”

At San Diego, he reportedly was doing better, but he still “loved to play rough with the other orcas.”

Keto, whose name means “Sea Monster” in Greek, has lived in four different parks during his lifetime.

Keto is known for bullying and even sexually harassing Morgan, Visser said, according to an article by the Inquisitr.

Morgan, who was captured from the wild in 2010, is originally from a pod in the Netherlands.

Jeffrey Ventre, a former SeaWorld trainer-turned anti-orca-captivity activist, and star of the anti-Seaworld film Blackfish, considers Morgan’s actions typical “escape behavior.”

“It looks like she jumped up on that stage area to get away from the other whales. I think that that was a way for her to prevent from getting beat up further.”

The Dolphin Project, which published the first video, called the behavior “unsettling.”

“While we cannot explain the reason for her behaviour, the juxtaposition of a previously-wild orca against the stark backdrop of the park’s performance area is unsettling to say the least.”

Lolo Parque insists that beaching is natural behavior and whales do it in the wild. According to the company’s website, Morgan is not a good candidate for release into the wild because she is deaf.

“A group of independent experts in cetacean hearing were measuring Morgan’s hearing capacity, using Auditory Evoked Potential (AEP). They came to the conclusion that Morgan has an important hearing deficit.”

Ric O’Barry, the founder of The Dolphin Project and star of the documentary film, The Cove, released a statement on Thursday arguing the judgment on Morgan’s captivity.

“The decision to deny Morgan a chance to return to the sea was politically motivated. The decision makers cannot provide any empirical scientific data to substantiate their claim that Morgan is not a candidate for release.”

 

“One can only guess as to how Morgan became the private property of SeaWorld. Morgan is now listed on SeaWorld’s website as one of its assets – an asset worth millions of dollars. A pretty sweet gift to a corporation that has a very high mortality rate and a long standing record of abusing orcas and other marine mammals.

“Let’s assume, hypothetically, that Morgan cannot be reunited with her family. Does that mean she has to spend the rest of her life in a concrete tank at an amusement park in Tenerife? Of course not. If SeaWorld had a heart, they would transfer her to a sea sanctuary. They have the money to create such a place. They owe it to Morgan and the other orcas whose lives they have ruined.”

SeaWorld may not have to fund the sea sanctuary. The initial efforts to build a haven for retired whales have been funded by Munchkin, a baby product company. Scientists have formed the Whale Sanctuary Project and, according to the Inquisitr, are currently scouting for locations.

Source: Inquisitr.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Development of a new communication system for a deaf orca Morgan based on gestures and light

June 2, 2016

Statement issued by the company (Announcement)

“The trainers of Morgan, an orca with a serious hearing damage that was rescued in 2010 on the coast of the Netherlands and that was transferred to Loro Parque in 2011, have developed a communication system, based on gestures and lights, as part of a rewarding program.

A trainer and supervisor of the orcas in the zoological park, Rafael Sánchez, explained in an interview with the Agency EFE how, shortly upon the arrival of the orca that was transferred at a request of the Dutch Supreme Court, the trainers realized that Morgan did not react on the audio signals of the whistles from the trainers.

Up until now, the scientists have conducted several hearing tests that have proved that Morgan suffers a severe loss damage or is possibly completely deaf. Now, this fact has been confirmed by a group of U.S. researchers who, under the leadership of an Australian scientist from the University of Curtin, have published their scientific study in the prestigious journal Aquatic Mammals.

To enable interaction with the orca, the trainers have installed the white light bulbs in the interior and exterior part of the pool, and when the light comes on, it indicates to Morgan that she did her task well, explained Rafael Sánchez.

The other five orcas now understand this new communication system created for Morgan, too, and, quite recently, all of them have undergone the hearing tests.

To perform these tests, a method was used that measures brain waves that are created as part of a response to an audio signal. This system is commonly used for cetaceans, highlighted Dr. Javier Almunia, Deputy Director of Loro Parque Fundación and fellow researcher in this study.

The hearing tests showed that Morgan is the only orca in the group that did not show any brain reaction, continued Javier Almunia, who, at the same time, cannot fully ascertain that Morgan is completely deaf. This is because a thick layer of fat that orcas have, may impede the precise reading of the brain waves via the electrodes applied to an orca’s head.

This hearing test is identical to the method used to test the hearing abilities of humans, which is based on measuring brain waves as a reaction to sounds, commented Dr. Javier Almunia.

The Deputy Director of Loro Parque Fundación guarantees that the the results of the audiogram of Morgan have been known for a while and that the work has been conducted for some time to ensure the development of a communication system for Morgan, for her to be able to integrate with the group. The most important part right now is to continue to review this study and obtain confirmations of these results by the independent scientists.

Morgan, who is estimated to be between eight to ten years old, weighs currently more than 2.200 kilograms, measures around 5 metres and consumes more than 40 kilograms fish per day. This amount of food is proportionally divided in nine meals during which the trainers take as an opportunity for conducting voluntary health checks and obtaining samples of blood, urine and even faeces by introducing a flexible tube through the rectum; health controls for which the orcas have been trained for.

The Deputy Director of Loro Parque Fundación recalled that Morgan was rescued on the 23rd of June in 2010 on the coast of Wadden Sea, on the Dutch island Schiermonnikoog, and was encountered in a “very poor condition with symptoms of dehydration and seriously malnourished”. The orca only weighed 450 kilograms and did not show signs of resistance against her rescue. People who were involved in this rescue mission commented afterwards that they were not certain that the animal would survives as long as the first night upon the rescue, so critical was her condition.

The orca was taken to the Dolfinarium in Harderwijk where she was recovering for one year until she was moved to Loro Parque (Tenerife) in 2011 following the decision of the Dutch juridical authorities.”

Source: latino.foxnews.com