06.01.16


Wet and Wild

If animal transporters really want to test their expertise, they can try their hand at shipping animals that aren’t biologically designed to thrive (or even survive) in the open air. Orca whales, for instance, pose a particular challenge. According to Mental Floss, when JJ the whale, the largest mammal ever transported, was set to be released back into the wild from SeaWorld, the shipping team had to design an entirely new apparatus to get the deed done and return him to his rightful home.

Because shipping a tank that would fit a 31-foot, 19,200 pound animal wasn’t a practical endeavor, the shipping team had to design a specialty sling that could lift the whale, by crane, into a padded truck bed, and then again onto a specialty boat that could release her into the sea.

Sharks, on the other hand, can’t survive a dry transit. When the Atlanta Aquarium prepared to ship four 2,000 pound whale sharks from Taipei, the transporter (UPS) had to build custom 8x24 foot tanks with pulley systems. Including water weight, the cargo totaled over 50,000 pounds, and had to be specially counterweighted once aboard the 747 airliner so as not to flip the plane over mid-flight. After a 17-hour, temperature-controlled journey, the sharks were safely rolled into the aquarium.

Transportation crates come in almost as many different forms as the cargo they ship. And while not every cross-country shipment contains a live animal, each crate must be tailored to your needs so that your cargo reaches its destination in one piece. With the right shipping methods, you can keep all your ducks in a row -- and then some.

Killer Whale Image

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