If you have been following the story about the young female Orca rescued last year off the coast of the Netherlands and held ever since in a small tank in a marine park in Harderwijk, the latest news is not good. The Dutch government has finally issued their ruling in which they rejected the plea by animal rights groups to try to reunite the Orca, who was given the name Morgan, with her family in the wild. Instead the court ordered that she be transferred to an animal park in the Canary Islands.
If you have read my earlier postings on this story, you know that I believe Morgan was doomed either way. The chances of finding her family pod were remote and without them she would have faced certain death alone in the North Sea. Equally dismal, however, are her prospects for living a normal life in the Tenerife marine park since the average life expectancy of Orcas in captivity is ten years compared to fifty or longer in the wild. (An inconvenient truth that the management and owners of these parks, like Sea World, conveniently omit from their PR campaigns.)
In the end, this is just one more sad tale about what happens when the world of whales and dolphins intersects with that of humans; a collision that nearly always proves fatal for the intelligent and sentient beings who dwell in the Seven Seas. Goodbye Morgan. To paraphrase William Ernest Henley's poem Invictus:
Out of the fate that awaits you,
Trapped in a watery hellhole,
We pray whatever gods may be
For your unconquerable soul.