22 Jan 2015

A Fun Family Outing? Think Again!

For some time now I have been meaning to write this. I am a massive animal lover and support The Born Free Foundation with regular donations. I am anti-zoo and anti-aquarium because of some of the truly horrible things I have seen and read in the past. And yet I was quite shocked to find that the majority of the public still pay ridiculous amounts of money to go to places like this, without knowing the true extent of animal cruelty that goes on behind the scenes.
Dolphins and whales are highly intelligent creatures, second only to humans. They are creatures that sing, that travel in family units, that are capable of having complex familial relations- so rich are their lives and capabilities that India has declared them to be “non-human people”. However, a handful of society is still oblivious to the true intelligence and grace of these creatures. They assume that because they do not have a voice, they do not have rights. But in my eyes, a person who suggests such a thing is has barely enough intelligence to call themselves human. Because there is simple no justification for the capture, trade and display of these animals. 

They should be admired for their amazing abilities and protected in the wild where they belong. 
Aquariums that house marine mammals are found throughout the world, attracting millions of tourists every year. Many of these aquariums pride themselves on conservation and education. However, in reality, only an average of 90 seconds per visit is spent on educational information and there is no record of any captive dolphins ever being released back into the wild. So is this really conservation? Or just simple cruel entertainment?

Most of the time aquariums focus on showcasing unnatural stunts the animals have been trained to perform. I very much doubt that you would ever see a killer whale balancing a ball on the end of its nose in the wild. Very few people realise that to see the beauty and grace of such animals in the wild is a far richer experience than the pantomimic displays of animals in captivity. Both Scotland and Whales offer ample opportunity to whale watch, demonstrating that all it takes is a little effort on our part. We really need to think about how a casual day out actually finances institutions who dress up abuse as entertainment.

Over half of the animals who live at aquariums have been captured from the wildOften the wild-caught mammals become aggressive towards their trainers such as Tilikum the Killer Whale, who in 2010 attacked and killed his SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau. This event was a result of years of being driven insane from being trapped in small concrete tanks with little stimulation. It is no surprise then that this traumatized whale went on to kill two more times. And who can blame him?  
Visitors’ leave on a high after a fun filled afternoon at the aquarium. But they never give a second thought to the animals still floating around inside, for they can never leave. The tanks are the sum total of their existence 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They are trapped. And a few hundred metres will take them to the edge of their world
This type of cruelty continues to happen today and it won’t stop unless you act urgently.  
In 1970s there were numerous captive dolphin and whaleshows in the UK. Today, there is none. Freedom for dolphins is not a dream. Freedom is a reality. I am positive that in the next fifty years the number of aquariums around the world will have dramatically decreased or, even better, completely disappeared. But until then, we have to persuade the tens of thousands of tourists who go to these contemptible shows, that abuse and cruelty is something they should not be supporting.
It seems the might pounds, dollar and euro continue to brainwash the minds of the humans.

I'd absolutely love to know your thoughts and feelings on this matter and if you are interested, I have left some links at the bottom for you to have a browse through.

Love Beth xx

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sending me the link, I was really interested to come and have a look. I know we already talked at length about where we stand in the face of zoos. I'm not 100% anti, and I'm not 100% for zoos either, but there are animals that are probably not suited to the wild anymore and I think the options for them are limited to probably staying in captivity.

    But this, this is something I 100% disagree with. Not just wales and dolphins, but all animals that are made to do tricks and such. They are wild animals and should always be treated with the respect of being wild animals, people have no business being in the enclosures with them. We certainly have no business teaching them to do tricks like a domestic dog. Maybe we agree to have differing opinions about the zoo, but we are aligned in our opinion on animal 'entertainment'.

    ~ K



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