Of Orcas and Men: What Killer Whales Can Teach Us by David NeiwertThe orca—otherwise known as the killer whale—is one of earth’s most intelligent animals. Remarkably sophisticated, orcas have languages and cultures and even long-term memories, and their capacity for echolocation is nothing short of a sixth sense. They are also benign and gentle, which makes the story of the captive-orca industry—and the endangerment of their population in Puget Sound—that much more damning.
In Of Orcas and Men, a marvelously compelling mix of cultural history, environmental reporting, and scientific research, David Neiwert explores an extraordinary species and its occasionally fraught relationship with human beings. Beginning with their role in myth and contemporary popular culture, Neiwert shows how killer whales came to capture our imaginations, and brings to life the often catastrophic environmental consequences of that appeal.
In the tradition of Barry Lopez’s classic Of Wolves and Men, David Neiwert’s book is a triumph of reporting, observation, and research, and a powerful tribute to one of the animal kingdom’s most remarkable members.
Freeing A Killer Whale Held Captive For 43 Years
Death at SeaWorld: Shamu and the Dark Side of Killer Whales in Captivity
Kevin Schneider reviews. John Hargrove is unique. A former SeaWorld trainer turned SeaWorld critic, Hargrove is likely among the last humans who will ever be able to say they bonded with captive orcas and performed acrobatic stunts with them. Hargrove is proud of the years he spent at SeaWorld and of the relationships he built with the orcas there. But the message of Beneath the Surface: Killer Whales, SeaWorld, and the Truth Beyond Blackfish is clear: The relationship between orcas and people can be beautiful, but the condition of captivity makes orcas dysfunctional and dangerous, to themselves, each other, and us.
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