A ban on the capture of wild orca and beluga whales in the waters around Russia has been extended until at least 2023.
Many of these individuals are sold to China and live a sad existence held captive in small tanks for human entertainment. However, the Russian Federal Agency for Fishery, which initially halted the captures in 2019, has also announced that the ban will include capture for scientific, cultural and educational purposes.
Last year a 100,000 thousand signature petition from members of the public in Russia was sent to the government there to end captures of orcas, beluga whales and dolphins for sale to theme parks. The petition followed worldwide public criticism from groups including WDC about a notorious whale jail in Srednyaya bay in Far East Russia, where 11 orcas and 87 belugas were initially captured for sale to Chinese marine parks. Most of the orcas and belugas (who were later freed) were placed into a collection of small sea pens in waters near Nakhodka that became known as a ‘whale jail’.
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