1/11/18-Port of Nagoya has announced that they plan to work with Chimelong Ocean Kindgom on artificial insemination in the future. Here is a link to the article in Japanese.
1/26/18-In December 2017, Wuxi Changqiao Ocean Kingdom imported two Russian orcas to their breeding base until the park can be completed. No other information is known about the whales.
2/3/18-According to Ceta Base, Wuxi's two orcas arrived to their holding facility on December 21, 2017.
2/21/18-Chimelong Ocean Kingdom has poured the cement floor for the killer whale exhibit's main tank. The main tank will be about 328 feet long and 98 feet wide. Chimelong also plans to build an underwater viewing area, which is expected to be for the orcas.
3/14/18-Earth at Port of Nagoya has an infection in his gums. He has been placed in the medical pool for treatment. Here is an article from Nagoya.
3/16/18-Loro Parque has plans to expand the orca exhibit in 3 to 4 years. Here is a link to an article. The plan is to wait until sometime after Morgan gives birth. She is due in late 2018/early 2019.
3/23/18-Earth is starting to show signs of improvement at Nagoya as the inflammation in his gums has gone down. Nagoya has resumed orca shows with Stella and Lynn. All three had been doing shows in the main tank, prior to Earth's illness.
3/24/18-Shanghai Haichang Polar Ocean World is trying to finish up construction on the park. The goal was to open in the Summer. There is still a lot of work to be done, but in this article you can see the nearly completed dolphin stadium. It is not known how far along the orca stadium is, though it is in line with the dolphin stadium for completion. Four orcas were scheduled to be moved to the park sometime between December 2017 and March 2018, though no information on any move has been released yet. It's possible they are still at Dalian.
3/27/18-Chinese Orca News has shared a link explaining Shanghai Haichang Polar Ocean World is scheduled to trial open in August with an official opening date of September 28, 2018. Still no word yet if the orcas have moved to the park or if they are still at Dalian.
4/4/18-SeaWorld announced that Katina injured her dorsal fin while interacting with other members of the pod on March 17th. They are treating the wound. Two forms of treatment they are using are medical honey, which is a natural healing element, and cold-laser therapy. It isn't fully known how the injury happened, just that she was interacting with other whales, and was near Trua, when the injury occurred. There is more information at the link.
4/9/18-China Orca News has posted a picture confirming Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park will have a killer whale underwater viewing area.
5/3/18-R&F Hainan Ocean Paradise's opening has been pushed back to 2019 according to this article. The park had recently put more resources into opening in 2018, but it appears they won't be able to.
6/16/18-Loro Parque has announced that they expect Morgan to give birth sooner rather than later. Based on the calf's growth, they announced that they expect Morgan to deliver in the late summer or early fall. They originally had expected her to give birth in late 2018.
7/25/18-Screamscape and Behind The Thrills have both recently brought up rumors about a massive expansion coming to SeaWorld San Antonio. The expansion includes new attractions, exhibits, rides and more, but one of the more relevant rumors is one that has been around for a while, but hasn't gotten much recognition. Ever since the Blue World project was scrapped, there have been rumors that SeaWorld San Antonio could still get an underwater viewing area for their orcas, just not to the scale of the Blue World. Now both websites have given more information on this rumor. Still, nothing has been announced, but it is something to keep an eye on. There is some ground clearing and work going on near Shamu Stadium and they also mention a sign saying "Making waves for a future new attraction". So something is coming. There may not be an announcement for a while, and if it does turn out to be underwater viewing for the orcas, it likely won't open for several years. There would also be a new Shamu show. It has been rumored for most of this year, that the next Shamu show at both San Antonio and Orlando would not be Orca Encounter, and this rumor further backs this up. A new show is being developed for both parks. Click on the names of the sites for more information on the rumor.
8/3/18-Chimelong's Marine Science Museum is expected to open in the second half of 2019, which is where the orcas will be held.
8/6/18-It has been confirmed that two orcas have been captured in the Sea of Okhotsk, Russia. A group called "Ocean Friends" was out trying to witness the capture and see the whales, but were not allowed. This was posted on Facebook yesterday and it seems they may have been captured yesterday, or at least very recent. It is not known where they have been taken, but we have added them under TINRO's profile for now.
8/15/18-China Orca News has posted the SunAsia Beluga Whale World is under construction and scheduled to open in 2019 and house killer whales.
9/6/18-Shangahi Haichang's opening has been pushed back. Trial opening is scheduled to start on October 1st and the grand opening is scheduled for November 16th.
9/9/18-Ocean Friends, the activist group who has been monitoring orca captures in Russia over the Summer has ended the expedition to monitor for the time being. July through October have historically been the most popular months for Russian orca captures. It may be that they will start up again next year, though nothing has been announced. One volunteer of the group, who had orginally posted about the first two captures in early August, posted that, as far as they know, a total of nine orcas have been captured this Summer so far. A total quote of allowable captures for 2018 was 13, so it's possible there could be more captures. The captures took place in the Sea of Okhotsk, though in different subzones. It is very likely these orcas will be sold to new parks in China. It is not known where these orcas are being held, but for now we will add them to TINRO's profile, as they have been the holding facility for new orca captures in the past.
9/20/18-Russian Orcas has now posted a link showing a court hearing in Russia in an attempt to have the orcas captured this year released. They say, if successful, all 15 orcas captured this year must be set free. Just recently, we found out 9 had been captured. That number is now up to 15. The quota this year was 13 orcas.
9/22/18-Loro Parque announced that Morgan gave birth to her first calf this morning! Both mom and calf are doing well. Morgan took to the calf immediately and the two are bonding. The sex and father are unknown. Little has been announced so far, but we will be sure to update with more news.
9/24/18-Loro Parque posted an update on Morgan and her calf.
"The first days in the life of a cetacean are critical and we have all been encouraged by Morgan’s strong maternal instincts and the way she is nurturing and taking care of her calf.
Establishing breastfeeding is crucial in this early phase and our team of veterinarians and external consultants are closely monitoring both mother and calf to see that this happens. Over the first 24 hours Morgan’s milk production has been lower than we would like, meaning it may be necessary to introduce bottle feeding to ensure that the calf is getting the nourishment it needs.
We sincerely hope that nature can take its course and that Morgan can feed her calf independently. However, we are watching the situation carefully and will assist with bottle feeding, if the experts consider that the life of the calf is at risk. We wish to take this opportunity to say thank you for all the kind messages we have received from all over the world as we celebrate the birth of Morgan’s calf. We will continue to provide updates as they enjoy their first days together."
9/25/18-Despite Morgan being a good mother to her calf, Loro Parque has had to step in to nurse her calf. They have had to separate the two for this, but veterinarians are trying to get Morgan to produce more milk. They also say the calf had been born at 10:50 in the morning. Still no update on the sex of the calf.
9/26/18-Morgan's calf is a female!
9/27/18-Morgan's milk production increase, so she was able to be reunited with her calf and is nursing again. Loro Parque says they will continue to monitor the two to make sure Morgan is still producing enough milk for the calf.
10/6/18-Loro Parque announced that they have had to continually step in to assist in feeding Morgan's calf as she is still not producing enough milk. The two continue to bond though.
10/6/18-New pictures continue to come out of Shanghai Haichang's trial operations. One picture shows the names of the parks mascots. The orca mascot is name Orac. It's not yet known what the whale's names are, or if this could be one of the orca's names or just a stage name.
10/31/18-Russian Orcas has posted that an article stating that there are 11 orcas at Srednyaya Bay in Primorsky Krai, Russia.
11/15/18-After the legal issues TINRO faced with illegal captures, it appears TINRO is no more, but the groups capturing orcas are still housing them at the old TINRO facility in Srednyaya Bay.
11/15/18-R&F Hainan Ocean Paradise has announced that they will not be housing any captured cetaceans, including the orcas they were eventually going to have.
11/15/18-Orcas are now being housed at Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park. The park will be having its grand opening tomorrow and at least one orca is at the park.
11/16/18-Shanghai Haichang has opened and has began its orca shows, confirming they have 4 orcas. This article references one of the orcas as being named "Wow". We are unsure if this is the orca's official name or if this may be a stage name. The word "Wow" has been in many concept art pictures for the park and can be seen in many places throughout the park. No names have been confirmed by Shanghai.
11/17/18-It appears Shanghai has at least one male and one female from pictures we have seen. The largest whale is a male, and is the one assumed to be named Wow. Below is a picture of what appears to be a female, that we can assume from other pictures. The other two whales sexes are still unknown.
11/20/18-Some good news out of Russia. The original capture quote for 2019 was 13, but after review, it was decided to have a 0 capture quote next year.
11/26/18-Chimelong has released pictures of concept art for the orca tank. The construction finish date may end up being sometime in 2020. It was previously thought construction would be finished in the second half of 2019. The tank will have a wave machine and the roof will be made of glass. There will be two underwater viewing areas, one being in the main show pool.
12/30/18-Srednyaya Bay is holding 12 orcas, and not 11 as originally assumed. Only 12 orcas are accounted for from this years captures, instead of the 15 that was originally reported. We have updated the site to reflect 12 captures as we are unsure if there ever was 15, at least until there is further information. These orcas also must stay at Srednyaya Bay until the government determines their futures as the captures were in violation.
12/30/18-Shanghai may have two male and two female orcas. They are also estimated to be between six and ten years old. From our past research, they were likely captured in 2014 and 2015 as Shanghai supposedly already had their orcas in holding at Dalian by May 2016.
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