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Old School Waterwork 1978 by 0rcinusorca Old School Waterwork 1978 by 0rcinusorca
What Sea World refers to as "Waterwork" was much different back then.

Note that the actor [ aka trainer ] is wearing what is called a Pony Tank. A small SCUBA tank that provides about 5 mins of air. He has a mask in hand and you can see the regulator hanging off his right side. He did an underwater entry into the pool while the audience was distracted paying attention to the other actor off to the left and then surfaced in the middle of the tank riding the whale.

After the death of Dawn Brancheau, it came up that SW had considered starting using these but didn't because they considered it a hazard if something went wrong. Wait, What? *Start* using it? Looks like they were using it then and then stopped for some reason. OSHA perhaps? It would appear that some historical information has been lost in the multiple [ now four ? ] ownership changes of the park.

I'd rather have the air if something went wrong.

This Orca was called Kilroy.
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0rcinusorca Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2012
I don't know. I've been following "Voice Of The Orcas" whom are a group of former SW trainers. I don't mean to sound demeaning to them when I say that it was surprising to me how little formal education is/was required to work with them [ Orcas ], how little they were actually told of their history [ weren't told Tilikum had killed someone ], and how little they actually get paid for such an amazing job [ starting at $7.00/hr was mentioned ]. Trainer injuries get down played, even in or should I say especially in the official record. Maybe someone was drug around a whale who grabbed the tank and they changed policy to eliminate the pony tank. None seem to fully accept the intelligence of them and respect said intelligence even though it is talked about in the shows. Personally I think religion is partly to blame for this attitude from humans, but my religion forbids me from discussing religion so I can't say anything about that.

The information may have simply been lost and not covered up. It's only the long time visitors like myself that would remember such things about the shows and have pictures like this to document such things as the previous use of Pony tanks in the shows.

That is why, IMHO, that I have survived several incidents of what killed Dawn, an Orca grabbing my arm up to the elbow. I fully trust them and I am not making demands of them to perform in a silly show. It would seem that the actors in the shows often mistakenly referred to trainers do not, at not as fully as I do. In a recorded interview with one, it was stated that they were told in training not to make eye contact with a particular whale. Anyone who has been around Cetaceans and spent time getting to know them as I have knows how important eye contact is to the 'getting to know you' process with them. It is no longer a mystery to me as to why the quality of the shows has gone steadily downhill the last several decades. They have been on a long slide from educational and informative to being more of a dog and pony show. The Cetaceans have their limits like everyone else and when "the show must go on" becomes more important than the welfare of the whales, or even of the actors and the limits of the Orcas are not respected, bad things start to happen. Even someone as peaceful as Gahandi got mad on occasion and showed his anger and frustration.

The only reason I would ever go back to Sea World again is to see if Katina and Kasatka and the other Cetaceans I have known there, are still alive and if they remember me. Not to see any of the shows.
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0rcinusorca Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2012
That is my point. They were being used and they stopped. No one is asking why. OSHA has been around since the early 1970s which means it had been around for some years when this photo was taken. I'm beginning to think either some important historical information on the Orcas has been lost or it is being covered up for some reason.

The Question is was it lost by OSHA or in the multiple ownership changes of Sea World?

I've had dialog with a couple of ex Sea World trainers about my experiences with the Orcas and they all had no idea that such open access ever existed where the public had physical contact with Orcas as I did.
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0rcinusorca Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2012
It could simply be poor record keeping.

The entry in Tillikum's file regarding Dawn consists of just 12 words. Just 12 words to describe what happened to her. I would think that would get at least a page or two.

I'm not sure just how to take either of these things. Both raise questions.
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