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Whale learning to speak human words is a ‘circus act’ to distract from the cruelty of her captivity

ALEXANDRA MA: ‘Wikie, a 16-year-old orca in France, made headlines… after audio was released showing that she’d learned how to mimic human speech. But while many were amazed by the sound of an orca recreating words including “hello,” “bye bye,” and “one, two, three,” animal rights activists were furious. Four animal rights organisations told Business Insider that Wikie’s training was cruel and inhumane, and that she should be free rather than in captivity. Several of them said that her human speech should be interpreted as a cry for freedom rather than a willing interaction with humanity.

Wikie lives at Marineland, an amusement park in Antibes, south of France. She was born there in 2001 and has never lived anywhere else, according to One Voice, an animal rights organisation in France… Claire Bass, the UK Director of Humane Society International said that Wikie is “as tragic as she is fascinating.” Bass said: “She is certainly further proof that these are highly intelligent mammals whose captivity in marine parks in the twenty-first century should come to an end”. SOURCE…

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