World Day for Captive Dolphins is held annually on 4 July to remember those animals confined in captivity and others which continue to be taken from the wild in marine parks and aquariums.
This day is an opportunity for us to remember the plight of the thousands of whales, dolphins, and porpoises held in captivity across the world.
Traveling vast distances in the wild, in captivity, whales and dolphins suffer from restricted space and a limited social environment, often forced to perform circus-style acts to entertain the public.
Dolphins and whales are highly organized marine mammals with their own language, which live in pods and have families. In poaching nets dolphins are killed, they hurt fins, feel shocked, pneumonia develops because of water that comes to the respiratory valve.
The fight for freeing captive dolphins is undertaken by the European Alliance to End Dolphins in Captivity (Dolphinaria-Free Europe) which includes the Born Free Foundation, Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, OceanCare, and others.
Today, around 289 dolphins are held in captivity in facilities across the EU.
Dolphinaria-Free Europe is committed to ending the keeping of cetaceans in captivity across the continent and you can help by pledging your support for our work. By working together, hopefully, one day in the future, Europe’s captive dolphins will be retired to seaside sanctuaries, and World Day for Captive Dolphins can be assigned to the history books.
Why are rare marine mammals, protected internationally and nationally, caught and enslaved? Businessmen are speculating on the topic of dolphin therapy and “rescue” from the difficult conditions of life at sea. We’re wondering why do people believe this and come to the show?
Today we remember the thousands of dolphins held in captivity around the world. Living in the confines of tanks and sea pens, with a very different and limited social environment that they would enjoy in the wild – all to entertain the public and make a profit for the zoos, marine parks, and companies who hold them.
We believe that the keeping of marine mammals in captivity should be banned all over the world. All commercial dolphinariums must be closed.
Please urge travel companies and tour operators to stop promoting dolphin shows and swim programs, and instead, offer more non-animal-based excursions to their customers.