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SeaWorld San Diego to phase out killer whale shows in 2016

SeaWorld San Diego announced Monday that it plans to phase out its theatrical killer whale show and introduce a “new orca experience” that takes place in a more natural setting and carries a conservation message.

The park revealed its plan in a presentation ahead of a conference call for investors. It confirmed that the controversial killer whale shows would be phased out in 2016, and that a “new orca experience” will take its place in 2017 in a setting that is “informative and more natural.”

The new orca experience will also carry a “conservation message inspiring people to act,” according to the presentation. The document provided no further details ahead of Monday afternoon’s conference call.

SeaWorld has long faced criticism for its killer whale shows, particularly after the 2013 release of the documentary “Blackfish.”

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