New research by Mexican marketing consultants suggests that the popularity of swimming with captive dolphins appears to be waning in the state of Quintana Roo. Studies of visitor numbers to facilities in locations such as Cancun and Riviera Maya have shown a steady decline in recent years with less than 10% of visitors to the region in 2016 taking part in such activities.
There has been widespread criticism of the standards of many facilities which has led to tighter regulations. At the same time, increasing public awareness about the issues surrounding the keeping of whales and dolphins in captivity have also had an impact.
There are more than 30 dolphinariums in Mexico holding around 300 dolphins, of which 16 facilities are in Quintana Roos. The latest figures come just weeks after Mexico’s Legislative Assembly took a significant step in the right direction regarding dolphin captivity in the country by announcing a ban on dolphin shows and dolphin assisted therapy in the Federal District of Mexico.