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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Inuk lost his fight

MYSTIC – We are sad to report today that Inuk, a Beluga whale who made Mystic Aquarium his home, has died.
In a statement released today, Mystic Aquarium, a division of Sea Research Foundation, Inc., said that Inuk, a 28-year-old male beluga whale that had been experiencing kidney failure for the past three weeks, unexpectedly died overnight. For the past two weeks, Inuk had been in stable condition, aquarium officials said in a statement.
“Despite the extraordinary efforts of aquarium staff, regular volunteers and additional volunteers from five different states, Inuk was unable to overcome the effects of extended kidney failure,” Dr. Tracy Romano, senior vice president of research and zoological operations at Sea Research, said in a statement. “He will be missed by all. Inuk provided both staff and visitors with years of pleasure and educational inspiration. He was an iconic animal who captured the spirit of oceanic conservation and understanding.”

Aquarium veterinarians and researchers brought Inuk’s body to the University of Connecticut today, where they, along with staff from the Department of Pathobiology and Veterinary Science, will perform a necropsy to determine the cause of his kidney failure, the statement said. The results of the necropsy will be available – at the earliest – in two weeks.

Inuk became ill on Jan. 29, when he began showing a lack of interest in food, the statement said. A blood test revealed a possible acute infection, further complicated by kidney failure. Since then, Mystic Aquarium’s animal care team had been working around the clock, giving Inuk supplemental fluids in an effort to clear his kidneys, aquarium officials said.

Mystic Aquarium is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), and is considered a leader among AZA-accredited institutions for its expertise in beluga and marine mammal care.

About Sea Research Foundation, Inc.
Mystic Aquarium, Institute for Exploration and Immersion Learning are divisions of Sea Research Foundation, Inc., a private, non-profit 501(c)3organization. The mission of Sea Research is to inspire people to care for and protect our ocean planet through education, research and exploration.

Editor's note: this information and photograph was wholly provided by Mystic Aquarium in a statement to the press. It is in its original form, lightly edited, as it appears on Tesla's Love.

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