Six Flags Discovery Kingdom is a terrible place for animals. Dolphins at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom are forced to give rides and perform silly tricks. Tigers and other animals are forced to perform in shows. Evidence indicates that Six Flags has put profit ahead of the animals' basic needs and uses outdated and abusive training techniques. Marine mammals spend their days swimming in endless circles in chlorinated, concrete pools with such poor water quality that 14 dolphins have died. The survivors are kept hungry so they will perform "tricks." A white Bengal tiger, normally a nocturnal animal, exists at the base of a huge roller coaster with a loudspeaker blaring right outside his enclosure. Other big cats pace, exhibiting "stereotypical behavior" caused by the stress and the boredom of captivity. Giraffes stand in their bleak enclosure with grass and tree branches just out of reach. The animals used in the shows are kept out of public view in perpetual confinement, including most of the tigers and the animals in the Discovery Theatre shows. Six Flags does not want patrons to see how the animals are kept or they would be on display.
MANY ANIMALS HAVE DIED SINCE SIX FLAGS TOOK CONTROL OF THE PARK IN 1997, NEARLY ALL FROM CAPTIVITY-RELATED CAUSES, including two orcas, seven elephants, fourteen dolphins, and two walruses. Seven-year-old dolphin Cortez died in October 2015, far short of his life expectancy of 50 years. In June 2015, Sivuqaq, one of the walruses, died at age 21 of heart failure. In 2017, Siku, another walrus, died at age 23. (According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Pacific walruses can live up to 40 years.) In April 2014 Six Flags euthanized elephant Bertie Mae at age 34. (Elephants can live to be more than 70 years old.) And this year a giraffe died unexpectedly at age ten. (Giraffes in captivity live more tha twenty-eight years.)
Bertie Mae was euthanized after she fell while practicing her performance routine and broke her back right leg.