The evils of captivity and theme parks with cetaceans

By Rania Watts

I was watching a video of engineers who created a robotic dolphin for the purpose of a side show exhibited at a theme park. As a child we would constantly go to aquariums to see all the beautiful fish in tiny tanks that are maintained and regulated [we hope]. 

It seems very cruel to have an animal the size of a dolphin in a tank the size of a swimming pool, when otherwise, in the wild, they would roam freely in the open water. 

I was reading the dolphin project and could not believe my eyes. This quote is taken directly from their blog which was written by Helene O’Barry. 

“Hundreds of dolphins are stuck inside concrete show stadiums all over the world. I often wonder what it is like for these complex sonic beings to find themselves incarcerated in minuscule tanks where their natural abilities can find no expression. They can’t employ their awe-inspiring echolocation for any of the things they would in nature. They can’t use it to catch live fish since trainers provide dead fish as food rewards during shows, swim programs, and training sessions. They can’t use it to explore their underwater world because there isn’t anything to investigate in a barren, lifeless tank. They certainly can’t use it to navigate because they aren’t going anywhere. Their echolocation is wasted, and it is inconceivable to me that some people still think restraining these brilliant minds in such a bleak, empty world is justifiable. The sensory deprivation humans subject them to is simply cruel.” 

The Dolphin Project is one of the most phenomenal projects on this planet to foster the cultivation of reintegration of dolphins from captivity into the wild rather like etting the bird out of its gilded cage. 

I remember watching the majority of Oscar winning, The Cove (film) one night after a long day with my kids.. It was really late at night, and I thought I could stay up to watch. 

I ended up falling asleep just beforeThe Cove’s bloodbath. My husband knows how much dolphins mean to me. When I woke up, he said “it was a good thing you fell asleep and missed the bloodbath because you would have completely cried”. 

Since then, I have tried to watch The Cove but cannot seem to make it through that one specific scene. I seriously often wonder how Ric O’Barry felt filming that specific scene. The slaughter of dolphins in an immensely cruel practise. 

The rescue team at dolphin project was not able to save those dolphins. However, they have saved many other dolphins by rehabilitating them and allowing them to go back where they belong. The Dolphin Project is a registered charity – meaning if you would like to see them thrive in their mission of protecting dolphins, (which they have been doing since 1970),  please consider either making a donation or sharing this content in an attempt to end dolphin cruelty. 

The Dolphin Project

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