Would you believe that more than 550 dolphins are held captive in 68 facilities across Mexico and the Caribbean? These dolphins are imprisoned primarily to amuse cruise ship passengers on ‘shore excursions’. Every day, hundreds of tourists disembark the cruise ships and pour into dolphin theme parks to hug, kiss and swim with the captive dolphins.
According to local independent newspaper, Novaya Gazeta it is the largest number of marine mammals to be held in this way, and prosecutors are said to be investigating whether the orcas and belugas are being kept in the tiny enclosures illegally.
In disappointing news, a Federal appeals court has rejected a petition from conservation groups to reopen a lawsuit over the Miami Seaquarium’s treatment of Tokitae (also called Lolita), the last surviving Southern Resident orca held in captivity. This is a blow to the latest court effort to free Tokitae from the Seaquarium and retire her to a sea sanctuary in her home waters of Washington State. The groups involved, including Orca Network and Washington’s
Tenerife, Spain – Wild-caught Norwegian orca Morgan, now held at Loro Parque in the Canary Islands, Spain, gave birth on September 22nd to her first calf. The park announced Morgan’s pregnancy in December 2017, just weeks after SeaWorld ended their association with Loro Parque, essentially abandoning the six orcas that had previously been included in their inventory.
On the morning of Saturday, September 22nd, Morgan gave birth. An orca being born should be a happy event, but no one is celebrating, except perhaps those that will make money from exploiting this new little calf.
Let’s explore why this not good news.
Moby, the oldest dolphin held in captivity died today at the Nuremberg Zoo, Germany.
Moby, who was thought to be around 58 years old, had been held in captivity since 1971. The exact cause of death is not known at present but further details may be released by the zoo following investigations.
Throughout much of his life, Moby could be seen swimming in the same pattern around his tank, a sign of stereotypic behaviour often seen in intelligent, wide-ranging marine mammals like dolphins when they are held in captivity for long periods.
Online video games platform Humble Bundle has announced further support for WDC's work to end the cruel practice of keeping whales and dolphins in captivity through its charity of the month programme.
Funds will be raised across a range of games, software and book bundles, and through the Humble store for the month of August. Humble Bundle’s unique system allows you to only pay what you want for a bundle and also choose how much goes to charity.
Today, WDC representatives, Rob Lott (End Captivity campaigner) and Julia Thoms (campaigns manager) met with senior Carnival staff at their headquarters in Miami. We were there to present more than 27,000 signatures from WDC supporters who want Carnival to stop offering their cruise ship passengers shore excursions to swim-with-dolphins attractions. If you were one of the 27,000 who signed our petition - thank you, we were there on your behalf.
The world’s first open water sanctuary for beluga whales, a project we have been working on for many years, was officially launched today.