British vacationers boycotting dolphin shows

How do you feel about the capture of dolphin from the wild for Cayman Dolphin parks, or any other marine mammals for any captive parks.

British vacationers boycotting dolphin shows

Postby wspa » Sun Dec 25, 2011 5:20 pm

British travelers are boycotting dolphin shows amid growing concerns over the death and suffering of these intelligent aquatic mammals in captivity.

Dolphin in confinement are trapped in areas tiny fractions of the sizes in the wild. Dolphins need to swim distances of hundreds of miles a day!

Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society acknowledges that the essential needs of dolphin can not be met in captivity: "they suffer extreme physical and mental distress, which can result in aggressive behaviour as well as a lower survival rate and higher infant mortality than their wild counterparts."

Dolphins fundamental means of seeing the world, a natural sonar called echolocation, is redundant in confined spaces. In effect, dolphins in captivity are blinded and stripped of their essential means of navigation, communication and living in their society.

The rise of captive dolphin parks began widely when the 1960s TV series Flipper sparked human curiosity. But now, during a worldwide week of action for captive dolphins, Flipper's former trainer supports the boycott of all confined dolphin park encounters, swims and attractions.

With the dead dolphin cradled in his arms Ric O'Barry stated: "She just seemed to give up on life," he said. "At that moment I realised that what I had been doing was wrong and decided to dedicate my life to getting dolphins back to the wild where they belong. The captive dolphin business is growing considerably, and people going to these places should know that this abuse is based on supply and demand, so do not buy a ticket to a captive dolphin show. That is the solution to stopping the misery of these animals."

Dolphins now cost upwards of $100,000, which is considered a good investment to the dolphin park owners, as one dolphin generate $1m a year in income. That is just how the dolphin park owners see and use them, as assets or business investments, and not as highly evolved and socially sophisticated mammals.

Although it has been more than a decade since dolphins and killer whales were kept on display in this country, Britons continue to be regular customers at dolphinariums overseas.

Many confined dolphin and marine mammal parks state that their facilities are appropriate for the dolphin. This is clearly a distortion of the truth, as the larger marine parks, including Sea World say their large pools are more than adequate space, but even the largest facilities only provide dolphins with access to less than ONE TEN THOUSANDTH OF ONE PERCENT of dolphins natural habitat.

"Dolphins are free ranging, intelligent and highly complex marine mammals. The vastness and biological diversity of the open sea cannot be duplicated in captivity," said Mr O'Barry, who now works as a marine mammal specialist with the French animal protection organisation One Voice, "They belong in the oceans, not playing the clown and suffering for our amusement. People who are truly interested in dolphins should go dolphin watching instead."

Captive Marine Mammal Facts

* There are an estimated 1,000 dolphins in captivity worldwide.

* The first documented case of dolphin in captivity began in 1913, when the New York Museum placed five dolphin on display.
They all died within 21 months of being put in captivity.

* The US is responsible for more than 2,300 bottlenose dolphins being captured for display purposes between 1972 and 1994.
For every dolphin captured and put in captivity, hundreds of dolphin die!

* The UK closed their last remaining dolphin show in 1993.
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