68ºF

Orca with lung disease euthanized at SeaWorld San Diego

In this Nov. 30, 2006, file photo Kasatka the killer whale performs during SeaWorld's Shamu show in San Diego. (AP Photo/Chris Park, File)
In this Nov. 30, 2006, file photo Kasatka the killer whale performs during SeaWorld's Shamu show in San Diego. (AP Photo/Chris Park, File)

SAN DIEGO – An orca named Kasatka was euthanized Tuesday at SeaWorld San Diego after a lengthy treatment for lung disease, according to officials.

In a statement, SeaWorld officials said the whale’s health had declined during the days leading up to the decision to euthanize the animal.

“Kasatka was the beloved matriarch of our orca family,” officials said in the statement. “A mother of four, grandmother of six and great grandmother of two, she was considered by the most current research as an older killer whale at nearly 42 years old.”

Kasatka had been diagnosed with a bacterial respiratory infection in 2008, officials said.

Shows involving the orcas ended at the San Diego park earlier this year. The same shows are scheduled to end at parks in San Antonio and Orlando, Florida, sometime in 2019.

SeaWorld currently cares for 21 killer whales at its three parks.

Download the Click2Houston news app in your app store to stay up-to-date with the latest news while you're on the go.

Sign up for KPRC 2 newsletters to get breaking news, sports, entertainment, contests and more delivered straight to your email inbox.