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Third orca death in 18 months at theme park

Loro Parque tourist attraction in Tenerife, Spain has announced the death of Kohana, a 20-year-old...

WDC’s Shorewatch work shortlisted for nature award

We are thrilled that our Shorewatch programme has been shortlisted in the Citizen Science category...
Image from one of the WDC Risso's dolphin research catalogues

Local community helps piece together Risso’s dolphin puzzle

Thousands of photographs from members of the public have been published today in two WDC...

Tesco joins new initiative to help protect whales and dolphins

Tesco, the UK's largest retailer has joined WDC, Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP), and the Royal Society...

The US Navy has reported that it will bring to an end its long running programme training dolphins to detect underwater mines.

The dolphin programme, which also involves dolphins trained to keep enemy swimmers away from warships, will come to an end within the next five years with the Navy stating that it will continue to care for the 24 dolphins it holds. What that care entails is not yet clear.

As newer, high-tech anti-mine capabilities are now used by the Navy it seems the dolphins are no longer of use.

Studies suggest that almost all US Navy dolphins were taken from the wild – probably around the Gulf of Mexico. Their capture is often brutal with only the young and fit individuals removed from the pod. The result is a stressful and negative effect on the group. They are then subjected to a life in captivity unable to travel the distances that they would in the wild each day. Causes of death for US navy dolphins include infections, gastric impaction (swallowing a foreign object), pneumonia, spinal fracture and drowning.

More on dolphins in captivity