Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin
Tursiops truncatus gilli
February 27, 2019
It is with heavy hearts that our ohana shares our oldest bottlenose dolphin known as “Kamoana” has passed away at the age of 54 years, following a sudden decline in health from age-related illness.
As one of the oldest dolphins under human care in the U.S., Kamoana was a part of our ohana for many decades. He lived a long enriching life and was our “grandpa” of the ohana. Kamoana’s lifespan is a testament to the level of animal care provided by the Sea Life Park team. Our team is devastated and he’ll be deeply missed.
Kamoana was a special ambassador to millions of guests and brought joy to many who visited as he was a fan favorite for his agility and speed.
Because we take a preventative medical approach, complete with quarterly comprehensive evaluations with the dolphins and daily physical examinations with all our animals, it enables them to live to an advanced age beyond the lifespans of their counterparts in the wild.
The average life expectancy of a male common bottlenose dolphin is 40-45 years (NOAA data https://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/protected_resources/bottlenose_dolphins/fact_sheet/index.html). Kamoana has died of natural causes but the veterinarian team will complete a full post-mortem examination known as a necropsy per protocol.