Pompous dolphin who starred in Dolphin Tale films dies at 39

The actress, who played the soft-spoken dolphin named Winter in the Dolphin Tale film series, has died aged 39

A popular dolphin at Florida’s SeaWorld, who starred in a film series, has died.

SeaWorld confirmed the death of Winter on Saturday. “She was an amazing animal and will be greatly missed,” the San Diego-based SeaWorld said in a statement.

Winter, who became known as the “mermaid dolphin” after her appearance in the 2009 film Dolphin Tale, was 39.

In 2016, staff at SeaWorld Orlando had her taken off sick and placed in an isolation pod for five days. It was reportedly thought she had been poisoned by PCBs – polychlorinated biphenyls – for food. The aquarium said this was not the case.

In the film, Winter was a seriously injured wild dolphin transported to a rehabilitation facility where it was hoped she could make a full recovery.

Staff at the SeaWorld rescue centre had spent more than a year raising the dolphin in her rehabilitation and giving her frequent medical care. Her kidney issues were deemed unrelated to her illness and staff believed the infection was just a coincidence.

In 2016 she was moved from SeaWorld Orlando to SeaWorld San Diego, where she’d been living for more than a decade. But in July this year SeaWorld reopened SeaWorld San Diego and said she would stay, along with other sick and injured animals, but added she would be more closely monitored.

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