Deserves Sanctuary NOW.
In the wake of the horrendously heartbreaking loss of Tokitae/Lolita, we cannot forget about the other orcas that suffer in isolation around the world.
As of now, there are at least two orcas (one in Russia and one in Argentina) that are kept in solitary confinement without members of their own species for companionship. Companionship is critical for orcas because they are highly social beings that—in the wild—choose to remain with their mother's pod for life.
Kshamenk (pronounced "Sha-menk"), confined at Mundo Marino in San Clemente del Tuyú, Argentina, is one of these individuals. In fact, he is the only orca held captive in South America.
While Mundo Marino claims that he was rescued as a calf on September 19, 1992, it also possible that Kshamenk was forced to strand with his pod, or was already stranded with the pod. If in fact they were stranded, they could have easily been put back in the ocean as a true form of rescue. Two of the other orcas found with him that day died almost immediately after being confined in tanks.
Kshamenk was initially housed with a young female orca named Belen. Belen had already been captive for 12 years at that point. Sadly, she died in 2000 at approximately 13 years old after her newborn calf died as well.
Except for a rotating group of bottlenose dolphins, Kshamenk has been alone for 23 years. In his tank, he is fed a substandard diet of dead fish and is forced to live among dolphins that may naturally be considered his prey.
Kshamenk has no reliable source of shade from the blisteringly hot Argentina sun. His show pool is incredibly small, but the circular back pool he is generally housed in is even smaller. His tail and snout can almost touch the walls of the pool simultaneously.
Not only is he exploited at Mundo Marino as a ridiculous form of entertainment, he has also been used to artificially inseminate at least one SeaWorld orca in the United States.
Imprisoning an orca for 31 years in a disgraceful tank for “entertainment” is unforgivable. There is no excuse whatsoever for orca exploitation. Kshamenk deserves to live out his days in a natural, deep, spacious seaside sanctuary pen.
Join us in speaking out for Kshamenk by demanding that the Directorate of Wildlife in Argentina create a seaside sanctuary pen and a plan for Kshamenk’s release.