A few months ago, I wrote a blog post on orca whales, who are actually dolphins, and the problems they face in captivity, and Tilikum, the whale featured in the movie Blackfish. Blackfish is the movie that publicized the plight of the orca whales that are kept in captivity. The movie finally forced entertainment facilities like Sea World to stop using the orcas for entertainment purposes. They also stopped breeding them in captivity.
Tilikum recently passed away at the age of 36. He died from a persistent bacterial lung infection. Tilikum finally became aggressive in captivity and, in 2010, he killed a trainer at Sea World. He was implicated in the deaths of two others. There was actually sympathy for Tilikum because the stress of his captivity was seen as the major factor in his behavior. There have been reports of oracas trying to commit suicide in captivity as reported in the above-mentioned blog post.
After Tilikum died, the President of the Humane Society, was quoted as saying that his death meant the end of the orca captivity program. We can only hope. A much better alternative for us is to take whale-watching tours a few miles out into the ocean. RIP Tilikum