Tag Archives: Animal rights

Sometimes A Great Nocean: the Simpsons Does SeaWorld

The Twitterverse plants ideas that can’t be shaken, like the tune that someone innocently hums while passing you on the opposite escalator.  Today’s sticky thought began innocently enough.

Watch as the SeaWorld-Simpsons connection is established in your brain

Watch as the SeaWorld-Simpsons connection is established in your brain

A proposal for a perfectly lovely animated movie based on Blackfish that would teach children to respect wildlife enough to see them in the wild (before they had been derailed and come to expect to “have” wildlife on the other side of a glass wall, in the best of instant gratification schemes) turned quickly into an episode – no, an entire series of mental episodes – of The SimpsonsThe Simpsons is especially fitting since Sam Simon, co-developer of The Simpsons, is an exemplar for championing the true nature of this world and whose support for the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society resulted in The Sam Simon being part of the SSCS-Australia organization’s whale-protecting fleet.

And because I have neither the skill nor the rights to write the erstwhile Simpsons scripts, I will leave it to the imagination of the overlapping Venn Diagram of Simpsons and wildlife fans.

But rolling around in my noodle are the images of the battling Bart (wants to own a dolphin) and Maggie Lisa (understands that wildlife belongs in the wild), with Bart’s selfish desires being manipulated by the evil Mr. Burns and his shifty

Even Mr. Burns revealed that he had a heart, if memory serves

Even Mr. Burns revealed that he had a heart, if memory serves

Blue-Haired Lawyer to project his desires onto stuffed toy ownership and dreams of becoming a trainer, while hapless Smithers allows his loyalty to Mr. Burns to take him, once again, down the garden path, offering special rates to schools for “field trips” to the Mega Aquarium Chain.  Or the trainers Ernst and Gunter, spewing out the latest script written by Sideshow Bob, while Patches and Poor Violet are exploited in a Public Service Announcement that reveals that orphans deserve to exploit captive dolphins, too.

Or the secrets revealed by Groundskeeper Willie about how a young man was pulled into the orca tank at night and killed, while Smithers (or was it Dr. Julius Hibbert?) was backed into regurgitating a story about hypothermia.

I think I was on a roll until that last bit. But the truth of captivity is not funny.  Dolphins consistently die around the world to feed the aquarium machine, to supply the demand of the market that the aquarium industry created.

Sometimes a Great Nocean would be a wonderful script indeed when Mr. Burns realizes that his greed has resulted in a massive manipulation of both nonhuman and human life, has degraded the lives of all and the ethical compass of humans, and sends Smithers out with an announcement that captivity, while begun in an innocent time, would be irresponsible if continued and that Mega Aquarium Chain would now be turned to an enterprise dedicated to the rehabilitation and release of stranded marine mammals and genuine studies of how to protect their marine habitats.

DOH!

What you can do: To become involved in resetting the ethical compass to the True North of respect for marine mammals, first WATCH BLACKFISH! Then follow your heart and your head and host or join an event in your city to Empty the Tanks, and follow the Blackfish Brigade, the Voice of the Orcas and the Sea Shepherd Cove Guardians for daily actions to bring marine mammal freedom into reality.

A generous reader pointed out that I meant Lisa! Thank you! 😉

A sea of cars that say “Watch #Blackfish”

Cars windows have been pronouncing gleeful occasions, such as marriage, since there were car windows.  Whether with tempera paints, shoe polish, or (plant-based) soap, there is a sea of “announcement” space as close as your drive-way, carport or garage.

What is there to announce?  In a word, blackfish.  If you have missed the news stories on CNN, HLN, CBS, ABC, etc., surrounding Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s, Oscar-buzz film Blackfish, and the controversy of SeaWorld’s maintaining a “collection” of highly intelligent orcas in morbidly small tanks, you are likely to remain unable to miss it for long.  In a nutshell, activists have been saying for many years that orcas, dolphins and whales are not suited to captivity. But along came a documentary to explore why an orca would kill one of his trainers, would “bite the hand that feeds” him, and the rest is history.

Again, if you’ve missed the story, just google “Blackfish” or, if you are social media savvy, search hashtag #Blackfish on Twitter. Especially via Twitter, you will see the worldwide conversation about the impact that watching the film and reading David Kirby’s book Death at SeaWorld is having on a world that had no idea.  You’ll find that a six-year-old boy who snuck in while his parents were watching Blackfish inspired a birthday present of demonstrations at three SeaWorld locations.
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But what about those who have missed it, who aren’t into current events or social media?
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Imagine a sea of cars emblazoned with the simple phrase “Watch Blackfish” and maybe add “on Netflix, Amazon and iTunes.”  Imagine the parking lots and interstate highways and traffic stops across these United States peppered with cars that encourage folks to join the Blackfish movement, to learn about the “Blackfish Effect,” and to take part in encouraging the world’s most-emulated marine park, SeaWorld, to see the error of its ways and change its model from exploitation to real conservation.
Watch Blackfish on Netflix, Amazon, or iTunes

Watch Blackfish on Netflix, Amazon, or iTunes

As one who isn’t particularly fond of bumper stickers, I really like the idea of car paint: it’s simple, washable and easily changeable.

Watch Blackfish

I’m hoping to wash my car before someone else makes the suggestion

Speaking of washable, off I go to the car wash and the crafts store.  While my first attempt got honks and thumbs-ups as I drove the 550 miles on I-75 from Florida, I think I’ll spiff up old paint for her new job as part of an ocean of cars with a mission.

Watch #Blackfish.  Listen for the truth.  Don’t ever go to a marine park or aquarium that uses these beings for whatever purpose is their flavor-of-the-month.  Join the Blackfish movement.
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And if you are so-moved, paint that car!!! ♥

Does the Georgia Aquarium understand “extinction”?

The Georgia Aquarium uses the term “extinction” in its recent petition to garner support for taking wild belugas out of the ocean and putting them into tanks.  Whether the Georgia Aquarium understands extinction is not clear.  But there are only two options:

  • A) It does; or
  • B) It does not
Will the Georgia Aquarium's use of the term "extinction" mislead the public?

Will the Georgia Aquarium’s use of the term “extinction” mislead the public?

In its petition, the Aquarium states, “Unfortunately, with fewer than 35 belugas in accredited aquariums in North America, this population of animals in human care is facing certain extinction.”

So, let’s walk through this statement in order to help us understand the message that the Georgia Aquarium is sending to the public:

Extinction: “In biology and ecology, extinction is the end of an organism or of a group of organisms (taxon), normally a species.” (From Wikipedia).

Population of animals in human care (in accredited aquariums in North America):  While the notion of “population extinction” is a credible component of species extinction, it was never intended to describe an artificial, man-made assemblage of animals extracted from wild populations and inserted into a captive display program.  As described in 1993 by Paul Erlich and Gretchen Daily, population extinction is most commonly viewed geographically and in two aspects.  These two aspects are a demographic unit and a mendelian population.  As noted by Erlich and Daily, a demographic unit is “simply an interbreeding group sufficiently isolated from other interbreeding groups so that changes in size do not greatly influence the size of nearby groups, and vice-versa.”  The other group, the mendelian population, “is, in essence, a genetically defined entity that can evolve independently of other such units . . .”

So, does the Georgia Aquarium understand that neither of these definitions was intended to encompass an artificial assemblage of captive animals in a “collection”?  I don’t know the answer to that.  In either event, however, this use of the term is inappropriate, and the Georgia Aquarium should resist its further use in its judicial challenge to NOAA’s denial, on its webpage, in tours at the Aquarium, and in petitions directed at a public who tends to learn much of what it knows about marine mammals from aquariums.  I will add, though, that I find it disconcerting to think that it actually might not understand extinction since it claims “conservation” and “education” as its goals.  Oops.

In the wide and wild world, there is but one beluga population that is, in fact, endangered, being listed on the United States’ List of Endangered Species as well as on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List.  That population is the Cook’s Inlet beluga whale group, which is a demographic unit and possibly also mendelian, whose ongoing plight was caused largely by “over-harvesting”.  Efforts are underway to protect that population, despite recent threats.

While it bears noting that some captive programs utilize aggressive breeding to prevent species-wide extinction where the wild populations are in danger, we humans should not extract wild animals from healthy, wild populations in order to preserve the captive one.  And where we do, we do not invent a fiction that we are doing so to prevent “extinction”.

From MarinelandCanada.com

From MarinelandCanada.com

Short sidebar:  The Georgia Aquarium’s petition notes that there are fewer than 35 beluga whales held in North American accredited aquariums.  This must exclude the 45 beluga whales held at Marineland Canada.  I didn’t realize that Marineland was not accredited.  I think we should leave this issue to the two aquariums to address.  Whether it should have been is another matter.

But back to the point, whether or not the Georgia Aquarium includes the Marineland whales, it would be inappropriate to consider the concept of “extinction” anywhere in this debate over whether the Georgia Aquarium should be allowed to invigorate the international capturing of wild marine mammals for the aquarium industry.

Don’t take the bait.  And I promise I won’t use the term “extinct” in my wish that all facilities that hold marine mammals go the way of the dinosaur.

Beluga Whales in Chukchi Sea, Alaska. Photo credit Laura Morse, NOAA

Beluga Whales in Chukchi Sea, Alaska. Photo credit Laura Morse, NOAA

 

The Origin of SeaWorld

In 1964 four fraternity brothers had an idea.

The idea was a restaurant with an underwater bar in the background, rather like a piano bar, but the “piano bar” was captive living beings.  Not too big a stretch for one of the founders, who is credited as the first to introduce “live bait” into the fishing for striped marlin.

The “piano bar” concept proved to be too expensive.

So they built an aquarium instead.

That aquarium is called SeaWorld.

Blackfish 110313

For more information about the plight of marine mammals during and after capture and for those who are born unnaturally in captivity, add A Fall From Freedom, Blackfish, Death At Seaworld and The Cove to your library; available on Amazon.com (Blackfish on November 12).

A limerick for Captain Paul’s return

Captain Paul Watson and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., flanked by supporters and members of the Sea SHepherd Conservation Society

Captain Paul Watson and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., flanked by supporters and members of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society on his return to the United States. Photo by Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

On this fine and auspicious day when Captain Paul Watson has been welcomed back to the United States, there will no doubt be many celebrations and writings in his honor.  To that grand homecoming, I humbly offer the following form of tribute, which is one of my favorites, the limerick.

The World has a Captain named Paul

Who’s in it for the long haul.

He squashed the Red Notice,

And with Bob and the SCOTUS

Will end whaling once and for all.

Welcome home, Captain.

How can I watch Blackfish? Let me count the ways.

As Blackfish continues to open in theaters around the world, the U.S. is “atwitter” with the film’s buzz, with over a million viewers in the 9p to 11p time slot on October 24 alone.  Folks from the rest of the world are wondering when they, too, can see this game-changing film.

Not only showing the film, CNN has provided a week’s worth of programming, with Jane Velez-Mitchell, Anderson Cooper, and Crossfire, highlighting the issues inherent in keeping marine mammals in captivity.  Meanwhile the Blackfish-screening TIDE keeps rolling on CNN with two more scheduled showings, on October 26 and October 27.

Blackfish still wowing the U.S. audience this weekend.

Blackfish still wowing the U.S. audience this weekend.

For social media and interaction, CNN has its own, and Twitter has seen a list of celebrity tweeters join the conversation, including David Kirby, the author of the important book, Death at SeaWorld, Ewan McGregor, Kirstie Alley, the film’s director Gabriela Cowperthwaite, the former trainers featured in both Death at SeaWorld and Blackfish (Voice of the Orcas), and others.  Use the hashtag #Blackfish to join the conversation and to get a sense of its immensity.

Blackfish, The Cove, and don't forget A Fall from Freedom, the first of the three films.

Blackfish, The Cove, and don’t forget A Fall from Freedom, the first of the three films.

If you haven’t seen Blackfish, or want to own a copy, the following links will let you join the conversation:

  • Available from Amazon.com on November 12 (you can pre-order)
  • Available from UK distributor Dogwoof in various formats: streaming, DVD, Blu-ray (and iTunes UK).
  • Streaming from Viooz.

And remember, there is a better way to see orcas.  That is quietly, in the wild, from a distance, perhaps from the land where you won’t interfere with them at all, at The Real Sea World as shown in this video by the Humane Society of the United States where you may come to appreciate, as does marine mammal expert Dr. Naomi Rose, that this is a “life-affirming” way to see orcas.

In the end, it’s about respect.

Pledge NO! to going to see a dolphin show and be part of the solution!

Pride at the Georgia Aquarium: an assault on humanity’s sense of ethics

As the Pride Festival gets into full swing this weekend in Atlanta, Georgia, its weekend events were kicked off yesterday at the Georgia Aquarium, described by the Atlanta Pride Committee on its website:

Th[e Georgia Aquarium] is always breathtaking and the décor is always an assault on your senses.

While Pride notes the decor and the assault on one’s senses, the contradiction between celebrating one’s freedom-to-be at a facility whose purpose involves denying those same freedoms to dolphins and whales (and other animals) is so obvious as to be embarrassing.

Atlanta Pride Kickoff Party at the Georgia Aquarium, photo www.atlantapride.org

Atlanta Pride Kickoff Party at the Georgia Aquarium, photo www.atlantapride.org

As has been repeated here and to Pride on numerous occasions, marine mammals are not suited – by their nature – to captivity.  These highly social and intelligent beings swim tens and even up to nearly 100 miles in a single day, use sound to interact with their world (to find each other, identify prey and danger and other curiosities), and live with their family/community groups, generally for life (that is, their relationships are far more permanent and daily-present than our own).

In obvious and inescapable contrast, in captivity, all of these basic characteristics of being a dolphin or whale are denied: they are put in concrete and steel tanks where sound is a confusing and stressful series of reflected and transmitted close-range noises, mostly human-caused, so much that they stop using sound in anything like the way they would in the wild.  They stop truly communicating with their world and become individual and isolated beings, notwithstanding “sharing space” with other, similar beings.  Their “families” aren’t families, their communities not communities, any more than a random assemblage of people makes a family or a community.  Denied access to living fish (their source of fresh water in the wild) as a daily staple of their diet, they no longer obtain the fresh water that is as essential to their healthy lives, and fresh water must either be supplied by a garden hose down their “gullet” or in cubes of gelatin (another product that they do not eat in the wild).  In addition to noise and diet, the aquarium industry further destabilizes them by moving them around dependent upon the needs of the industry and often takes the young away from their mothers to populate another park.

The noise was noted in 2011 by Dan Matthews, PETA Vice-President, after his first attendance at a Pride opening party,

As a veteran clubber, I’m used to big loud parties, but the music at the aquarium was so earsplitting that even before we entered, I could only wonder how it sounded to the most notable of the facility’s 120,000 inmates–the beluga whales. These marine mammals are so sensitive to pounding noises that the aquarium shipped them away during construction of the dolphin exhibit. Yet the thumping techno remix of Katy Perry’s “Firework” was as audible outside as a jackhammer.

Thus began the outreach to Atlanta Pride, which continues to the present.  Despite years of such outreach by PETA and its spokespersons (like Jane Lynch (2012) and Project Runway’s Tim Gunn (2013)) and other individuals, the Atlanta Pride Committee continues to ignore the body of work made available to it regarding the perils of captivity to marine mammals.

Have a great time this weekend at the Pride events.  It is just increasingly disappointing that the Pride leadership does not listen to the consistent outreach about why “Pride” and the “Georgia Aquarium” do not share values.

As long as Pride, whose main purpose is

to promote unity, visibility and self-esteem among lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgender and queer persons and to promote a positive image in the Atlanta area and throughout the Southeastern United States through community activities and services[,]

continues to ignore the rights of other beings to be who they are, to have the freedom that life gave them, unaltered by an agenda of an exterior entity, corporation or government, Atlanta Pride will fail its mission.

One cannot build Pride on an assault of humanity’s sense of ethics.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/briangratwicke/6182462658/in/photostream/

Beluga whales have their lives taken away as a curiosity or weekend amusement. Photo by Brian Gratwicke

What you can do:

Thank you to PETA for not ever giving up on thiThank you to PETA, Georgia Animal Rights and Protection, and Atlanta's local

Thank you to PETA, Georgia Animal Rights and Protection, and Atlanta’s local activist community for not ever giving up on the dolphins and whales at the Georgia Aquarium. Photo by Katie Arth.

 

 

Pixar: How about another tweak to revised ending to ‘Finding Nemo’ sequel?

In a truly awesome announcement, we learned that Pixar reconnoitered with the Blackfish folks, including director Gabriela Cowperthwaite, to discuss revising its ending to the sequel to Finding Nemo, called Finding Dory.

Apparently, Pixar, having seen Blackfish, realized that captivity may not be all it has been, by the aquarium industry, cracked up to be, and reached out to Cowperthwaite.  The original ending, in which the lost fish and marine mammals would spend the rest of their days in captivity, would be revised to allow the animals a “choice” as to whether they stayed at the aquarium or returned to the wild.

While Pixar and others may feel that this revision is a welcome one, I continue to live up to my “fly in the ointment” status and ask, “Wouldn’t this revision teach children that animals make a choice about their captivity status? When they see animals at aquariums and marine parks, having seen this new ending, might they not make this association?”

One of the things the public learned in Blackfish is that not all that they hear at SeaWorld is necessarily true.  Life spans of orca longer in captivity? You’ll hear from SeaWorld that, yes, they are.  But the reality is quite the opposite, as reported today in China Daily.  Orcas live a demonstrably shorter life span in captivity.  Another of the lessons that can be learned every day at SeaWorld, is that the animals only perform tricks (called “behaviors” by the Spin Tank of the aquarium industry) when they choose.  In Blackfish, we watch former trainer Carol Ray struggle with the fact that, as a trainer, she regurgitated this “choice” spin to the public on a regular basis, just as the trainers were instructed.

So, Pixar.  Choice?  The animals “choose” to remain in captivity?

Animated films have educated children about animals since there has been animated film.  And while anthropomorphizing is part and parcel of this process, such anthropomorphizing is not, in itself, a problem.  In fact, it’s quite good and quite effective at delivering a message to children.  But please, Pixar, don’t use this tool or teach our children, in a theatrical sleight of hand, that animals have some say in their residence at marine parks, or else be just like SeaWorld, teaching that dolphins perform tricks when they “choose”.

Blackfish, distributed by Magnolia Pictures, is playing across the United States right now.  See it.  Join the meaningful conversation about the end of marine mammal captivity and how we must not teach our children something about this issue that is just not true.

In fact, here is where you can teach your children about orcas, while they listen to them LIVE on hydrophones off the San Juan Islands.  How awesome is that?!!

Take your children to see them in the wild, and teach your children the true awesomeness of life.

Take your children to see them in the wild, and teach your children the true awesomeness of life.

And while you listen to them live on the hydrophone network or plan a family vacation to the nearest shore to see wild dolphins (or even river, where there are river otters and beavers), sign a pledge by Save Japan Dolphins not to see them in captivity and contact Pixar.

Pixar Contact information:

  • Pixar Animation Studios
  • 1200 Park Avenue
  • Emeryville, CA 94608
  • Telephone: (510) 922-3000
  • Facsimile: (510) 922-3151

Edited to add the following AWESOMENESS:  Earlier today there was an amazing occurrence recorded on the hydrophone network when a SUPERPOD graced us with their magnificence.  Selena Rhodes Scofield put together this excerpt and points to new vocalizations at 5:35 – 5:43.  Get ready for audio wonderfulness, not to be heard at any aquarium anywhere.

 

Atlanta’s ‘Blackfish’ audience recognizes the “pink dolphin in the room”

It was clear that Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s documentary, Blackfish, struck a chord with the Atlanta audience when the manager of the Midtown Art Cinema had to use a gentle nudge more than once to stop the questions in last night’s special appearance by Emory Senior Lecturer Dr. Lori Marino, to allow the 9:30 showing to begin even close to “on-time.”

Members of the packed house at the Midtown Art Cinema last night were visibly moved by the journey that they had just witnessed, a journey of not only the orcas who were captured by an industry intent on using them for their commercial value, but also of the trainers who were used in much the same way.

Blackfish takes the viewer on a journey, both  human and orca

Blackfish takes the viewer on a journey, both human and orca

Whether they came to “training” as a calling or on a college-age whim, what was striking was that the trainers’ journeys were not unlike Tilikum’s own.  Trained and rewarded for appropriate behaviors and shunned for missing a “bridge” is a method employed not just on the non-human charges.  While this method is not restricted to the aquarium industry, what is restricted to that industry is the maintaining in captivity of marine mammals who do not thrive in those conditions and using “trainers” to keep that captivity machine running.

Blackfish joins Death at Seaworld by award-winning author David Kirby, the Cove and A Fall from Freedom as important repositories of information about how our society treats marine mammals

Blackfish joins Death at Seaworld by award-winning author David Kirby, The Cove and A Fall from Freedom as important statements about how our society treats marine mammals

What is also clear in the film is the nearly-inevitable stress-response that results and how that stress-response is an individuated process, both for human and non-human.  For a thinking being who in a natural setting makes both individual and group choices, merely having this choice removed may induce a stress-response.  The continual exposure to a lack of control will, once it reaches a point of saturation, express.  Learning, as we do in the film, that the brains of orcas have an extremely developed brain structure related to communication and emotion, this lack of control and the inability of echolocators to fully “express” themselves in concrete sound-bouncing chambers, it is little wonder that orca-human interactions are bound to “go wrong.”

The humans involved, too, react to this inherent, systematic and institutional ignoring of marine mammal requisites for a full life.  John Jett’s statement in the film that he remained a trainer “for” Tilikum, and his question, “who would take care of Tilikum,” revealed a growing awareness that things were not right for Tilly.  Carol Ray shares her first inklings that the welfare of the orcas was less important than their survival and distribution among parks.

While Tilikum has nowhere to go to address the “flight” in “fight or flight stress-response,” it is heartening that certain trainers and others around the world recognize the horrors of marine mammal captivity and are taking on the fight for their freedom, in their own way, on their own journey.

What was also clear to the moviegoers was the “pink dolphin in the room,” and one brave young woman gave voice to it, when she asked whether what she had seen in the movie applied to dolphins and whales, as at the local Georgia Aquarium, which holds 11 dolphins and four beluga whales and is seeking more.  Marino’s answer, born of her own research on dolphins, was unqualified in its response: dolphins and whales are not suited to captivity.

For more information about Tilikum and the facts revealed during the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s enforcement action at SeaWorld, I highly recommend the very readable Death at SeaWorld, now in its third printing in just over a year.

What you can do:

Eight deaths, three survivors: the survival odds are not good: EMPTY THE TANKS!

Verdict: brain damage due to overdose of antibiotics is the cause of the deaths of two dolphins, Shadow and Chelmers, housed at Connyland.  Administered by Connyland veterinarian, the Examiner reports that charges against the veterinarian for negligence and cruelty are expected to be filed.

Dolphins do not have a good survival rate at Connyland. Photo Credit: Ivan Schnyder

Dolphins do not have a good survival rate at Connyland. Photo Credit: Ivan Schnyder

While the charges against the veterinarian may be appropriate, one cannot help but note that Shadow and Chelmers bring the death toll at Connyland to eight deaths in three years and to query whether any charges will also include the amusement park that is responsible for the well-being and lives of the dolphins under its control.  How many deaths are considered “acceptable” in the aquarium industry?  How many deaths would be acceptable in anyone’s household?  If one lost eight dogs in three years due to illness and unrelated to natural aging, that is, eight out of eleven, I suspect that none of us would hesitate to wonder whether there was something in the environment and/or the care that was inappropriate and unacceptable.

So let’s look at the industry over the last six years and at some of the dolphins and whales who have been under its control (as documented by Ceta-base):

Aquarium                              Species                        Deceased in Last Six Years            
Connyland                            Bottlenose                   Shadow
.                                                                                     Chelmers
.                                                                                     Barchus (Bacchus)
.                                                                                     Magic II
.                                                                                     Chicky’s Calf (unnamed)
.                                                                                     Silver
.                                                                                     Secret

Georgia Aquarium             Beluga                          Natasha
.                                                                                    Gasper
.                                                                                    Maris’ Calf
.                                                                                    Nico (died 29 days after
.                                                                                       transport to SeaWorld)

SeaWorld (all)                    Beluga                          Muk Tuk                                      .
.                                                                                    Spooky
.                                                                                    Ruby’s Calf
.                                                                                    Sikku
.                                                                                    Martina
.                                                                                    Whisper’s Calf (twin)
.                                                                                    Whisper’s Calf (twin)
.                                                                                    Ruby’s Calf

Seaworld Orlando.          Bottlenose                     Starkey
.                                                                                   Bunny
.                                                                                   Sabrina
.                                                                                   Hekili
.                                                                                   Peanut
.                                                                                   Sundance
.                                                                                   Kato
.                                                                                   Bunny’s Calf
.                                                                                   Starkey’s Calf
.                                                                                   Calla’s Calf
.                                                                                   Rhett
.                                                                                   Sabrina’s Calf

Miami Seaquarium         Bottlenose                     April
.                                                                                   Cathi
.                                                                                   Nosey
.                                                                                   Hollywood
.                                                                                   Jupiter
.                                                                                   2009 Calf
.                                                                                   2009 Calf
.                                                                                   Hollywood’s Calf

This six-year snapshot of examples is but the tip of a very large iceberg of captive dolphin and whale death in an industry that will merely replace the dead with more income-generators.  But these income-generators, these dolphins and whales, do not deserve to be treated as livestock for human amusement.  Rather, they deserve to live a life for which their species was designed, and they deserve to live it in the ocean, with natural seawater, and tides, and sunshine and stars, and live fish that they hunt with their families, rather than live in small concrete tanks, where they are given medications, like the antibiotics given to Shadow and Chelmers, on a continual basis.

What can you do:  Learn how marine mammals are not suited to captivity, and on July 27 stand with thousands around the globe who are committed to find a life for all the current captive whales and dolphins that does not involve depriving them of the life they were born to live.

Join us as we say to the worldwide aquarium industry, EMPTY THE TANKS! to give dolphins and whales the kind of space, natural sea water, and ability to catch their own prey that defines who they are.  While there is no quick-fix to the problems created by the aquarium industry, we can begin the course toward protecting dolphins and whales from commercial and non-profit enterprises that would exploit them to satisfy the human attributes of curiosity and desire for amusement.

You can also sign a pledge that you will not attend a dolphin show, and thereby send a message to an outdated industry that it must use its considerable resources to find a better life for captive dolphins and whales, including releasing all those who are rehabilitated for a free life.

Thank you to Ceta-base for maintaining a database of the world’s captive cetaceans.

Empty the Tanks - Worldwide on July 27

Empty the Tanks – Worldwide on July 27. To find or create an event go to https://www.facebook.com/events/633576009989898