SeaWorld says Tilikum the killer whale has died this morning.
Officials say there is no cause of death at this time, though the older whale had faced some very serious health issues.
“Like all older animals, Tilikum had faced some very serious health issues. While the official cause of death will not be determined until the necropsy is completed, the SeaWorld veterinarians were treating a persistent and complicated bacterial lung infection. The suspected bacteria is part of a group of bacteria that is found in water and soil both in wild habitats and zoological settings,” reads a statement from SeaWorld.
Tilikum had made headlines over the years after killing three people – a trainer here in B.C. in 1991, a man trespassing SeaWorld Orlando in 1999, and another trainer also in Orlando in 2010.
He was about 36-years-old.
Tilikum went to SeaWorld about 25 years ago from Sealand of the Pacific in Canada.
SeaWorld currently cares for 22 orcas in their Orlando, San Antonio and San Diego facilities.
Watch SeaWorld’s video of their behind the scenes orca care: