Activists Call for Suspension of Dolphin Shows in SeaWorld | World Defense

Activists Call for Suspension of Dolphin Shows in SeaWorld

Khafee

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Activists Call for Suspension of Dolphin Shows in SeaWorld
8 June, 2019

Dolphins in Minsk, Russia, March 8, 2015. Vasily Fedosenko-Reuters.

San Diego - Asharq Al-Awsat

Years after the documentary film "Blackfish" galvanized a movement to end SeaWorld's killer whale performances, animal rights activists called for an end to "circus-style" dolphin shows at the theme parks.

At a hotel news conference near SeaWorld's San Diego park, the group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) issued a report documenting physical and behavioral harm it says dolphins suffer from their use in live shows and confinement in captivity.

Dr. Heather Rally, a PETA Foundation veterinarian, said the practice of trainers riding dolphins through the water while standing on their backs and beaks was of greatest concern.

Reuters reported that such stunts strain the marine mammals' sensitive lower jaws in a way that can damage their hearing, injure joints and muscles and worsen other injuries caused by confinement within holding tanks where the dolphins are kept.

At a separate news conference, SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. officials defended their treatment of dolphins and denied the shows cause any harm.

 

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Canada bans the captivity of whales, dolphins
June 10, 2019
By Darryl Coote

View attachment 7819
Canada made it illegal on Monday for dolphins or whales to be held in captivity, a law that opponents have criticised for being anti-science. photo by Brian Kersey/UPI | License Photo

June 10 (UPI) -- Following years of debate since the bill was submitted to parliament, Canada on Monday banned whale and dolphin captivity.

Bill S-203, known colloquially as the "Free Willy" bill and officially as the Ending the Captivity of Whales and Dolphins Act, passed Canada's House of Commons by a vote of 222 to 85, making it fineable up to $150,000 for holding a whale or dolphin captive. There are exceptions for keeping the marine animals for rehabilitation purposes and research.

The bill was tabled on Dec. 3, 2015, by former Sen. Wilfred Moore and was later sponsored by Green Party Leader Elizabeth May.

The Green Party cheered news of the bill's passing its third reading, stating, "when we work together, good things happen."


The bill will have the greatest impact upon two amusement parks: the Vancouver Aquarium, which has one dolphin, according to advocacy groups, and Niagara Falls' Marineland, which owns over 60 relevant animals, the CBC reported.

Marineland has long been an opponent of the bill, previously stating it "impairs legitimate scientific and research programs."

"The bill and the debate around it [have] been highly emotional lacking in fact-based or science-based analysis and mired in unnecessary conflict incited by radical animal rights groups from the United States," Marineland said in an October 2018 statement against the bill.

The Vancouver Aquarium announced in January that it would no longer keep whales or dolphins.

Humane Canada said news of the bill's passing was worthy to "splash a fin at."

"Nothing fantastic ever happens in a hurry," the group said on Twitter. "But today, we celebrate that we have ended the captivity and breeding of whales and dolphins."

 

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