Skip to content
All articles
  • All articles
  • About whales & dolphins
  • Create healthy seas
  • End captivity
  • Fundraising
  • Green Whale
  • Prevent bycatch
  • Prevent deaths in nets
  • Stop whaling
Credit: Seacoast Science Center

The Unlikely Adventure of Shoebert, a Young Grey Seal Who Visited an Industrial Park Pond

Credit: Seacoast Science Center In mid-September, our stranding partners in northern Massachusetts were inundated with...
Leaping harbour porpoise

The power of harbour porpoise poo

We know we need to save the whale to save the world. Now we are...
Right whale - Regina WDC

Whale and Dolphin Conservation: Change Through Policy.

WDC focuses on education, research, conservation projects, and policy work to create a sustainable future...
Clear the list graphic

Clear WDC’s Amazon Wishlist for Giving Tuesday

UPDATE: We are thrilled to report that everything was donated off of our Amazon Wishlist...
Fin whales are targeted by Icelandic whalers

Speaking truth to power – my week giving whales a voice

The International Whaling Commission (IWC) meeting is where governments come together to make decisions about whaling...
The Codfather being good with Anvil kick feeding right next to them_0761 branded

Spout Spotters: Boater Safety Around Whales Online Course Launches

After countless hours behind the computer, bountiful snacks, and a few stress relieving walks with...
WDC team at UN Ocean conference

Give the ocean a chance – our message from the UN Ocean Conference

I'm looking out over the River Tejo in Lisbon, Portugal, reflecting on the astounding resilience...
65556ab2635fdab7b4e12265b9623d64

Stream to Sea: Orca Action Month 2022

This June was an exceptionally busy and exciting Orca Month, starting with a somewhat surprising...

China giving with one hand whilst taking with the other?

Yesterday, China broke the news that it was finally to recognise and address animal welfare within its national legislation. Wildlife in China is currently protected by “The Protection of Wildlife Law” introduced back in 1988. However, the welfare of the individual animal isn’t recognised. This is a crucial omission as authorities are hampered by the current law and its restrictions. As it stands, the law is actually far from protective as there are no regulations to punish those who hurt or abuse wildlife. Given that the bill also only covers wildlife “in the wild”, those held in captive facilities are not protected by existing legislation and there are no standard regulations covering living or breeding conditions of captive wildlife – something this amendment will be looking to address. WDC hopes that this step will help address many of the issues affecting the import and keeping of whales, dolphins and porpoises currently in captivity in China.

An in-country source told WDC “This is wonderful news that will improve both conservation and welfare efforts for China’s wildlife. I admire China’s continued strengthening of wildlife policy and look forward to seeing the success of this bill.”

This is a big step for China and one that should be applauded however before the world could catch up, half way around the world another story broke, this one detailing the barbaric capture of dozens of baby elephants in Zimbabwe, destined for parks and zoos in China. As they are seen to give with one hand, they take so painfully with the other. The circumstances surrounding the capture of these young elephants remains unknown but their fate does not. Already being transported overland to Mozambique, they will be loaded onto a sea container where they will slowly make their way to their new homes, thousands of miles away from their families. Although the fault for the capture must lie at Zimbabwe’s door, the demand came from China, where the legislation to consider and enact animal welfare provisions is even more important than ever. 

Clearly there is a long way to go on the animal welfare road in China but … as the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu said “the journey of a thousand miles starts begins with a single step”. Let’s just hope it’s a sprint to the finish line!