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Conservation in action – working on an international stage to protect whales and dolphins

Conservation in action – working on an international stage to protect whales and dolphins

Unlike us humans, whales, dolphins and porpoises don’t entertain the concept of borders. For them...
Hope springs eternal for an end to whaling in Iceland

Hope springs eternal for an end to whaling in Iceland

As January morphs into February, my pleasure at the prospect of lengthening days and the...
The pingers and the porpoise – preventing deaths in fishing nets in Cornwall

The pingers and the porpoise – preventing deaths in fishing nets in Cornwall

When a porpoise or dolphin swims into a fishing net, rope or line, they can...
Putting whale and dolphin welfare on the agenda

Putting whale and dolphin welfare on the agenda

Every whale and dolphin is important. You know that, but in the past, conservationists have...
Christmas…how to get it wrapped without plastic

Christmas…how to get it wrapped without plastic

It’s that time of year again when there’s only one thing on most people’s minds...
Frozen waste – missed opportunity to address deep concerns over Norway’s ‘snorkel-with-orcas’ tours

Frozen waste – missed opportunity to address deep concerns over Norway’s ‘snorkel-with-orcas’ tours

Beats me why anyone would want to snorkel in the deep, dark ice-cold waters off...
Buying fish – can you ever be sure that dolphins haven’t suffered?

Buying fish – can you ever be sure that dolphins haven’t suffered?

In the future, dolphins, porpoises and whales won’t get caught in fishing gear – that’s...
Bringing home the misery of orca captivity

Bringing home the misery of orca captivity

Emma Stallworthy and Caroline Willis spent much of 2019 as residential volunteers at our Scottish...

San Francisco recognises whales’ and dolphins’ right to freedom

Reports are emerging of a landmark resolution passed this week by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors recognising whales’ and dolphins’ right to freedom from captivity.

According to reports the resolution states that whales and dolphins deserve ‘to be free of captivity, and to remain unrestricted in their natural environment’. The resolution was championed by Commissioner Russell Tenofsky and backed by both San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener, Dr Lori Marino and sponsored by Earth Island Institute’s International Marine Mammal Project.

An earlier initiative known as the Malibu proclamation, which reflects the sentiments outlined in the Declaration of Rights for Cetaceans: whales and dolphins provides another great example of progressive thinking at the local level. This may provide a future example of how the principles of the Declaration of Rights for Cetaceans may be implemented at the municipal or state level.

With Sea World shares and popularity plummeting, this great news from San Francisco, the Malibu proclamation and even the Indian Government citing the intelligence and sentience of dolphins as a reason to ban any future development of dolphinaira, is this the death knell of the cetacean captivity industry finally tolling?

Meanwhile, in a truly ground-breaking case the Non-human Rights Project are awaiting the outcome of an appeal court hearing for the chimpanzee known as Tommy. They argue, using the scientific evidence, that he should be recognised by the court as a legal person and that he should be granted the right to bodily liberty and integrity and given sanctuary from the tiny cage in which he resides.

The decision on Tommy’s case is expected within the next four to six weeks.  WDC is working with the Non-human Rights Project to see how similar cases for whales and dolphins in captivity might one day be heard in US courts.




Follow the ongoing campaign for whale and dolphin rights with WDC.