Kiska the killer whale has been filmed by anti-captivity activist and whistleblower Phil Demers banging her head against her enclosure at MarineLand in Ontario, Canada
A heartbroken killer whale has been filmed banging her head against the side of her tank after outliving her five babies.
The distressed orca, named Kiska, is in captivity at MarineLand in Ontario, Canada, and is seen thrashing against the perimeter of her pool in a 30-second clip.
Anti-captivity activist and whistleblower Phil Demers filmed the mum, nicknamed ‘the loneliest whale in the world’ by the Whale Sanctuary, and then shared it on social media.
The 43-year-old campaigner previously worked at the park.
The footage was uploaded with the caption: “This video was taken on Sept 4th, 2021. Anti-captivity activists entered MarineLand and observed Kiska, their last surviving orca bashing her head against the wall. Please watch and share. This cruelty must end. #FreeKiska.”
Mr Demers also shared a second video filmed from closer in to the orca, aged 44, as she rammed the enclosure walls.
He said: “This is dangerous and self harming behaviour. Kiska is in distress.”
He claims Kiska was born off the coast of Iceland before being captured in 1979.
She has outlived all of her tank mates, including her offspring, and has been on her own for a decade.
The Orca Rescues Foundation said: “For over 40 years, she has suffered the loss of her freedom, her babies, and all of her tank mates.
“For the past 10, she has been in complete social isolation from others of her kind. This is what her loneliness, and her captivity, has done to her.”
Rob Lott, end captivity campaigner at the Whale and Dolphin Conservation, told iNews the whale’s behaviour “is a direct, stress-related result of wild-caught Icelandic orca, Kiska being raised in an artificial, concrete environment for the last four decade”.
“Sadly, this isn’t unique and the repetitive, self-inflicted behaviour shown by Kiska has been seen in other captive orcas where years of boredom in barren, featureless tanks with little or no stimulation manifests itself this way,” he said.
He went on to say chronic stress can have an impact on a captive orcas’ immune systems and physiology with devastating consequences.
The Mirror has contacted MarineLand for comment.