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Perhaps A Shamu Pause To Install Some Fast-Rising Pool Floors?

December 2, 2013

SeaWorld has long been considering the use of fast-rising floors in its show pools to help alleviate safety concerns related to waterwork. Perhaps they are finally ready to proceed with the Florida installation:

“One Ocean,” SeaWorld Orlando‘s iconic killer-whale show, will be taking a break in early 2014.

The theme park will be doing routine maintenance on the main performing pool at Shamu Stadium, a SeaWorld official says. The work will begin in early January. “One Ocean” is currently on the park schedule posted on its website through Jan. 5.

The Dine With Shamu experience will also be suspended for the first part of next year.

During the closures, SeaWorld Orlando will offer “Shamu Up Close,” which will include above-water and underwater interactions and a look at training techniques.  It will be held in the Dine With Shamu space and accommodate hundreds of guests at a time, a spokeswoman says.

“One Ocean” and Dine With Shamu will return sometime in the spring, SeaWorld says.

Shutting down the cash-gushing Shamu show for a period of months is not “routine maintenance.” I have no knowledge that a fast-rising floor is on its way (previous on SeaWorld’s fast-rising floor here). But if I was a betting man….

[Also worth noting: this will be a very interesting experiment in how important the Shamu show is to SeaWorld’s gate revenue].

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Robert permalink
    December 4, 2013 2:10 pm

    As a theme park observer, I find it odd that Shamu Stadium will likely be closed on the day of the company’s 50th anniversary—March 21, 2014.

    Why would they not have done the maintenance this year (2013) in preparation for next year’s anniversary promotion? Why close the biggest attraction in the park for months during a major promotional campaign? I don’t get it.

    Was this maintenance planned since before the release of BLACKFISH?

    What are your thoughts, Mr. Zimmermann?

  2. Sam permalink
    December 27, 2013 12:24 am

    Its funny you call this a “Shamu pause” as the first thought I had was that this could be a more typical “pregnant pause”. Is it possible one of the adult females (Katina or Kayla I believe) are due to drop a calf around this time? Kayla in particular hasn’t been a great mother and Katina has also had issues – she last had a calf in late 2010 so the timing could be right. A new calf so soon after all this interest from the documentary might be too much for them, especially if the calf does not bond well or dies as an infant. They lost an adult female in 2010 during partuition so it does happen (and at 20 she was not advanced age for a birth). It would be even more concerning if one of the younger females were due with a calf. Both are related to Tilikum (one is a “granddaughter” the other a “daughter”) and if bred to him would raise even more flags with their critics. Three months may seem like a long window of time but its very difficult to estimate a due date. It would be hard to conceal a new whale but they could simply wait several weeks, with the show pool and stadium closed, to finally announce a live, successful birth. (The show pool is typically used for laboring females as the greater depth is thought to help them deliver.) Only truly seasoned whale observers would know the difference between a calf that is several weeks/months old and a true newborn.

  3. January 9, 2014 9:52 am

    I think it is a waste of money which would be better spent on Seapens. Tilikum wouldn’t give Dawn up and still has her arm to this day, no rising floor would have prevented that. There is a huge bay adjacent to Seaworld San Diego it would be a fantastic place to release some of the orca without costing them any business, pig headed they are!

  4. Laila permalink
    January 26, 2014 5:38 am

    Shut that place Dowwwwwn!!!!
    Shut Sea World Down!!!!!!
    Set the beautiful innocent mammals free where they truly yearn to be 😢

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