The last orca calf born in captivity at SeaWorld has died

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Pictures of Kyara swimming alongside her mother Takara went viral in April, when SeaWorld announced the arrival of its last ever captive bred orca. SeaWorld had the opportunity to allow Takara to give birth in a seaside sanctuary but instead chose to make a buck off the birth.

"Pneumonia has been identified as one of the most common causes of morbidity or illness in whales and dolphins, both in the wild and in aquariums", SeaWorld added.

The last orca whale to be born in SeaWorld captivity has died at the San Antonio park.

"Forty orcas have now died on SeaWorld's watch", wrote Colleen O'Brien, a spokeswoman for the animal rights group. "As animal caregivers we dedicate our lives to these animals, and this loss will be felt throughout the entire SeaWorld family". SeaWorld said she was battling some serious health problems, including an infection that veterinarians say they believe was pneumonia.

The whale's legitimate reason for death has not yet been resolved pending a full post-mortem examination.

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SeaWorld says the rest of the pod, including Takara, is responding well and behaving normally. It could take several weeks before the results are finalized.

"The global SeaWorld team is united in support of our San Antonio family as they go through this extremely hard time".

The baby whale was being treated for an infection over the weekend, the Orlando-based company said.

Kyara was conceived before SeaWorld shuttered its orca breeding program in March 2016.

In 2010 a trainer was killed by a killer whale in front of an audience and a documentary released in 2013 entitled Blackfish left many criticising the park.