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.
A dolphinaria in Arizona, US has announced that it will close for the immediate future following the death of a fourth dolphin that it held captive.
The latest bottlenose dolphin to die was 22 year old Kai, who had not been eating, swimming or breathing normally in recent days according to an official statement.
The 11 orcas captured last year for sale to China and currently held along with 87 beluga whales in small sea pens described as a ‘whale jail’ near Vladivostok, may start dying after many have reportedly developed frostbite.
As temperatures begin to drop at the site, ice is starting to form on the surface of the water which staff there are now having to break up each day.
SeaWorld announced on Monday that Kayla, an orca held at its marine park in Orlando, Florida, has died.
Kayla was 30 years old, having spent her entire life in captivity since her birth in 1988 at SeaWorld's San Antonio park.
Kayla's father was an orca captured from British Columbia in Canada while her mother was taken from Iceland. In the wild, these two very different types of orcas would never have encountered one another.
Kayla died at a far younger age than would have been expected of a wild orca (avg. 46 years).
The SEA LIFE TRUST and project partner, WDC have today announced that Europe’s leading all-cargo airline Cargolux will sponsor the flight to help relocate beluga whales, Little Grey and Little White from captivity in China to a sanctuary in Iceland in spring 2019.
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.
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.
We were happy to host Zoology student, Grace Long for a two week placement at our UK headquarters, in March. Grace is a student at the University of Exeter and she’s keen to get into whale and dolphin research and conservation. She joined our End Captivity team during her time with us and took on an important piece of work, investigating the life span of bottlenose dolphins in captivity.
You may remember that at the end of June, WDC was invited to Miami to present to senior executives at the Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest cruise company.