SeaWorld Orlando is the water Park Aquatica suffered a loss on Saturday night when a commerson’s dolphin died shortly after birth.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, the newborn calf was born to a 16-year-old dolphin with the name for the ring Tone, the only girl of the commerson’s dolphin at Aquatica, and one of only four Commerson’s dolphins at SeaWorld.
Ringer was originally transferred from SeaWorld San Diego to SeaWorld Orlando in the beginning of 2016 after suffering several failed pregnancies. She had been on birth control to prevent further incidents, but became pregnant while living in her new home.
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SeaWorld explains in a blog post that they tried hard to care for the Ringer during her pregnancy, and then, to save the calf after the birth.
“During the unexpected, Ringer’s pregnancy was important to our animal care and veterinary teams,” wrote SeaWorld on the SeaWorld Care blog. “During her whole pregnancy, the teams will convert a big part of the planning and thought in the preparation for the birth, to help with the set up of the Ring and the calf for success.”
Eventually, though, the animal care team at SeaWorld was not able to resuscitate the newborn dolphins after it began with signs of anxiety, and the calf died shortly after 8 pm on Saturday.
The Orlando Sentinel also reported that, earlier this month, a marine life specialist at the Animal Welfare Institute don’t think the Ring would be able to make a success of the birth of a calf at SeaWorld, calling the institution “hardly ideal” for the breed.
“These dolphins should never have been allowed to become pregnant,” said Naomi Rose of AWI in an e-mail to the Orlando Sentinel. “It’s all such a waste and many of them are not good welfare practice, to reproduce when the chances of a successful outcome.”
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However, SeaWorld insisted that the Ring was placed under 24-hour surveillance during the last month of her pregnancy, and that their team responded “immediately” if the calf needed help.
SeaWorld reports that Ringer is currently doing well for their company, despite the loss of her calf.
“She passed the placenta after the birth and began to eat. She is still under 24-hour observation by our care teams and is not seen in the park. We remain committed to its care and well-being.”
SeaWorld also confirmed that they will perform a necropsy to determine the exact cause of the calf is dead.