Two killer whales pregnant at SeaWorld

May 18, 2010 at 10:17 AM
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ORLANDO, Fla., May 18 (UPI) -- Two killer whales at SeaWorld Orlando in Florida are pregnant by the whale who drowned a trainer in February, officials said.

Taima, 20, is to give birth to her fourth calf late this month or in early June and Katina, 32, is expected to have her sixth calf in October, the Orlando, (Fla.) Sentinel reported Tuesday.

The father is Tilikum, the 12,000-pound male who grabbed trainer Dawn Brancheau by her hair, pulled her under water and drowned her Feb. 24. Tilikum, the largest killer whale in captivity, has been linked to three human deaths in 19 years.

Orlando-based SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, which also operates parks in California and Texas, has had 26 killer-whale births, beginning with Katina's first calf in 1985.

Tilikum has sired 13 of the calves since SeaWorld acquired him in 1992 when marine parks were abandoning efforts to capture whales from the wild.

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