Vancouver Aquarium Is Giving Up Cetacean Captivity!
Excellent news! Thanks to people like you who understand how much dolphins and whales suffer in captivity, the Vancouver Aquarium has announced that it has given up its fight to continue to exploit cetaceans in tanks.
Last May, we asked you to write to Vancouver Park Board Commissioners who were considering legislation that would effectively ban cetacean captivity at the Aquarium, which was featured as #9 on our Ten Worst Tanks list. Because you did, and in such huge numbers, the commissioners were convinced to do the right thing.
As was expected, after the ban was enacted the Aquarium vowed to fight tooth and nail to continue exploiting cetaceans for profit. However, on January 18, 2018, Vancouver Aquarium CEO John Nightengale came out with a statement outlining how they have officially decided to end their captivity program.
Nightengale points out that it was public outcry that “debilitated” aspects of the Aquarium's operations – a true testament to the power of activism!
There remains a single dolphin in Vancouver Aquarium’s tanks – a Pacific white-sided dolphin named Helen – who now finds herself isolated from anyone of her kind, after the recent deaths the Aquarium’s other two cetacean captives. Helen’s future remains murky, but we hope that she can be sent to a seaside sanctuary to retire and potentially even be released back to the wild ocean, where she truly belongs.
Annelise Sorg, of No Whales in Captivity, told the International Marine Mammal Project that “This major victory will help put more pressure on Canadian Senators who are right now considering enacting a Senate Bill to ban cetacean captivity in Canada. After the last remaining dolphin is gone from the Vancouver Aquarium, Marineland in Ontario will be the only facility left in this nation holding cetaceans. The writing is on the wall and today's victory is a huge step towards our goal to end the war on whales in Canada."
We thank you for your work to shut down the Vancouver Aquairums’ tanks. But it isn’t over yet: please contact Canadian senators encouraging them to pass the national bill that will ban cetacean captivity in Canada for good.