A California bill that sought to end killer-whale shows at SeaWorld in San Diego and phase out their captivity was put on hold Tuesday, dousing an escalating fight between animal activists and supporters of the major tourist attraction.
The bill’s author, Democrat Richard Bloom of Santa Monica, agreed during the bill’s first hearing before the water, parks and wildlife committee to revisit his proposal after further study. As a result, AB2140 is dead for this year, and the soonest lawmakers could vote on the proposal would be mid-2015 after additional hearings.
Bloom was inspired by the 2013 documentary “Blackfish” in which filmmakers argue that captivity and mistreatment of orcas make the animals aggressive and have led to attacks on trainers. It examined the events leading to the 2010 death of trainer Dawn Brancheau in SeaWorld Orlando when the whale Tilikum pulled her underwater.