Orca Kohana died after a lifetime in captivity at only 20 years old

Orca died at Loro Parque in Puerto de la Cruz on the island of Tenerife, Spain

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Orca Kohana died after a lifetime in captivity at only 20 years old

Orca Kohana died in captivity at just 20, after spending her entire existence in captivity in a tank. Orca died at Loro Parque in Puerto de la Cruz on the island of Tenerife, Spain. Unfortunately, the structure is famous for the deaths of killer whales.

Orca Kohana is in fact the third to lose her life inside in just 19 months. Among the victims there is also the little Ula of just 3 years, daughter of Morgan. The orca was born at Sea World in San Diego in 2002, and then moved to Loro Parque in Puerto de la Cruz after a long journey across the Atlantic Ocean.

Loro Parque announced Kohana's disappearance in a press release. It is not clear how and why she died. In the wild, killer whales can live up to 90 years, while those imprisoned in dolphinaria rarely exceed 20 years of life.

Out of 174 killer whales that died in captivity, only 18 are over 20 years old, as specified by the Free Morgan Foundation. Kohana has lived a very unstable life, like all animals held in captivity. Dolphin Project said the orca was born in San Diego's Sea World water park, daughter of Takara, also born in captivity, and of Tilikum, captured in 1983 in Iceland and transferred to Sea World in Orlando, where he was involved in the death of three people.

Kohana was separated from Takara at just over 3 years old to be moved to Loro Parque. Kohana's first puppy, Adan, born in 2010, was immediately snatched from her by trainers, as was her other puppy Victoria, born in 2012 and died in 2013 before turning one year old.

Her son is still alive but suffers from extensive and chronic dental problems, as reported by the Free Morgan Foundation, an organization committed to the release of Morgan, the last female killer whale left in the park in Tenerife.

The habitat of the orca is widespread in all the seas and oceans of the world and lives both in the abyss and in the shallows near the coasts, sometimes even reaching the mouths of some rivers. Normally, however, the killer whale prefers to live in both arctic and antarctic cold waters where, in summer, it hunts among the ice floes.

Only a few populations migrate to the equator in the summer, much like the gray whales that migrate near the US coast. Sightings in the Mediterranean Sea are quite rare. Several killer whales have been sighted in the Ligurian Sea near Pra 'in December 2019; at first it was thought they came from a herd of killer whales that have lived for some time near the Strait of Gibraltar, but then it was understood that it was a known group registered in Iceland.

The researchers of the Orca Guardians Iceland association exchanged their data with Ligurian biologists and it was discovered by comparing the fins and other details, that these are specimens studied in 2017. It is difficult to estimate the number of individuals in the world, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature there are no precise data, one of the most reliable estimates is about 50,000 specimens.