Following requests from PETA, United Airlines has confirmed that it has stopped selling SeaWorld tickets and removed all mentions of the park from its United Vacations website. The airline is part of a growing list of travel-industry leaders - including Virgin Holidays and Alaska, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest, Spirit, Sunwing, and WestJet airlines - that have cut ties with SeaWorld.
In nature, orcas may swim as far as 140 miles in a day and bottlenose dolphins may swim up to 60 miles a day, dive to depths of nearly 1,500 feet, and maintain dynamic relationships within a large social network. At SeaWorld, 140 of them are squeezed into just seven small tanks and can't escape attacks from other frustrated, aggressive dolphins. At SeaWorld's annual meeting in June, PETA - which owns stock in the company - urged its fellow shareholders to stop allowing trainers to stand on dolphins' backs and faces, which (as detailed in a new veterinary report) may damage their hearing, strain muscles and joints, and exacerbate the injuries caused by confinement to the cramped tanks.