SeaWorld trainers will no longer ride dolphins; company settles $65M lawsuit over 'Blackfish' documentary

ORLANDO, Fla. -- SeaWorld says trainers will no longer stand or ride on dolphins.

The move follows nearly a year of pressure from "People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals" or PETA.

However, SeaWorld says that had nothing to do with the changes, calling "PETA" a group of "ill-informed activists."

Instead, SeaWorld said it's "continually evolving its animal presentations for both guests and their animals." The company also insists the practices are not harmful to dolphins.

PETA is claiming victory saying, "stopping trainers from treating dolphins like surfboards means less abuse at SeaWorld, but orcas and other dolphins continue to suffer in tiny concrete tanks."

Meanwhile, SeaWorld has reached a $65 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit filed by investors in 2014.

It followed revelations on the treatment of orca whales in the documentary "Blackfish."

The suit claimed SeaWorld misled investors by not disclosing mistreatment.

SeaWorld said in court documents the settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing.