Cetaceans in captivity...

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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Fancy » Feb 10th, 2018, 11:23 am

I think some people have missed this:
On September 16, 1996, Vancouver Aquarium took a leadership role and became the first aquarium in the world to make a commitment to no longer capture cetaceans (whales and dolphins) from the wild for display and to only care for:

Cetaceans that were captured before 1996
Cetaceans that were already being kept in a zoo or aquarium before 1996
Cetaceans that were born in a zoo or aquarium
Cetaceans that were rescued from the wild and rehabilitated, but deemed non-releasable by the appropriate government authorities

What do people expect? Never try to help those in distress?
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Silverstarqueen » Feb 10th, 2018, 12:09 pm

Most wildlife is left to their own devices. Hundreds, thousands of wild animals die without human intervention. Shouldn't we then put wild wolves, deer, bears, in captive zoos, rather cull them, if we are just trying to save lives? (Surely their lives count too, no less than whales). Unless they are trying to save a species (which rarely works, it ends up being "saved" in captivity), what is the purpose of putting individual whales in captivity "for their own good"? Or is it just an excuse so the humans have their pretty entertainment?
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Fancy » Feb 10th, 2018, 12:44 pm

Silverstarqueen wrote:Most wildlife is left to their own devices. Hundreds, thousands of wild animals die without human intervention. Shouldn't we then put wild wolves, deer, bears, in captive zoos, rather cull them, if we are just trying to save lives? (Surely their lives count too, no less than whales). Unless they are trying to save a species (which rarely works, it ends up being "saved" in captivity), what is the purpose of putting individual whales in captivity "for their own good"? Or is it just an excuse so the humans have their pretty entertainment?

There are too many stories of people trying to rescue injured wildlife. The fact that "Hundreds, thousands of wild animals die without human intervention" is not what is the issue.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Silverstarqueen » Feb 10th, 2018, 3:12 pm

Fancy wrote:I think some people have missed this:
On September 16, 1996, Vancouver Aquarium took a leadership role and became the first aquarium in the world to make a commitment to no longer capture cetaceans (whales and dolphins) from the wild for display and to only care for:

Cetaceans that were captured before 1996
Cetaceans that were already being kept in a zoo or aquarium before 1996
Cetaceans that were born in a zoo or aquarium
Cetaceans that were rescued from the wild and rehabilitated, but deemed non-releasable by the appropriate government authorities

What do people expect? Never try to help those in distress?


No more need to be captured just to put in a zoo.
Those that were born in captivity will have to remain because there is no sense in releasing them, only question is who pays the bill?
What is the purpose of "rescuing" them from the wild. Wild animals normally survive or die, there is no reason to "rescue" them, they are a normal part of the balance of nature, some live, some die. Same as any other wild animal.
If humans are doing something to endanger a species you can regulate the human behavior which is causing this. Putting these animals in a tank is not rescuing them, unless their habitat is also rescued.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Ka-El » Feb 10th, 2018, 3:37 pm

Silverstarqueen wrote: What is the purpose of "rescuing" them from the wild.

Science? Learning? Compassion? The argument these are sentient beings gets stronger every day.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby alanjh595 » Feb 10th, 2018, 3:53 pm

If we didn't have these miraculous animals in an environment where they could be studied, we would not have the information that we have gained today. https://www.vanaqua.org/act/research/cetaceans
Now that we have learned everything that we can, and have provided the finest living conditions that we could, for these beautiful mammals, it is no longer necessary to capture healthy subjects for further study, and we can now use our acquired information to protect and enhance their environment so that they will benefit with our help.
We now have the knowledge and ability to modify our actions to lessen the negative impact we have on their lives.

I have no issues with taking in the sick and wounded to nurse them back to health, and hopefully return them home if they will be able to survive on their own. The same goes for those that are born in captivity.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Fancy » Feb 10th, 2018, 4:35 pm

Silverstarqueen wrote:No more need to be captured just to put in a zoo.
Those that were born in captivity will have to remain because there is no sense in releasing them, only question is who pays the bill?
What is the purpose of "rescuing" them from the wild. Wild animals normally survive or die, there is no reason to "rescue" them, they are a normal part of the balance of nature, some live, some die. Same as any other wild animal.
If humans are doing something to endanger a species you can regulate the human behavior which is causing this. Putting these animals in a tank is not rescuing them, unless their habitat is also rescued.
Putting these animals in a tank to help them get back into the wild is absolutely helping them.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Silverstarqueen » Feb 10th, 2018, 5:52 pm

How many whales have they returned to the wild that survived in the wild, after placing them in captivity?

I have heard of one Orca.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Fancy » Feb 10th, 2018, 6:03 pm

You would have to ask the aquarium.
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby Silverstarqueen » Feb 11th, 2018, 7:54 am

It's a big news item when it happens. The unsuccessful attempts are rarely publicized, Keiko being one of the more famous, but that was because he was famous before they released him.

And there was a whale in Florida which they released and seems to have survived.

" that the median survival estimate for captive orcas in the U.S. is just 12 years and that 63 percent of whales who've died in captivity spent less than six years in tanks before their death."
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Re: Cetaceans in captivity...

Postby alanjh595 » Feb 11th, 2018, 8:08 am

In 1996, the Vancouver Park Board instituted a municipal bylaw that prevents the Vancouver Aquarium from capturing cetaceans from the wild for display purposes, and only obtain cetaceans from other facilities if they were born in captivity, captured before 1996 or were rescued and deemed un-releasable after this date.


For many years, the primary attraction for visitors was the orca show. The Aquarium was the first to capture and display a killer whale, Moby Doll, in a pen at Burrard Drydocks, for 3 months in 1964. Since then, it was home to Skana, Hyak II, Finna, Bjossa, and three of Bjossa's calves. When Finna died and Bjossa was left without other orca companions, the Aquarium attempted to acquire one or more female orcas from other marine parks. However, no suitable companions were found, and Bjossa was moved to SeaWorld, San Diego, in April 2001 where she later died due to a chronic respiratory illness. The Aquarium has since moved to emphasize the educational aspects of the displays rather than the public spectacle of the shows. They have also highlighted their research, rescue and rehabilitation efforts.


Vancouver Aquarium has not kept any orcas in captivity since 2001 and has pledged not to capture wild animals, but to instead rely on captive animals for breeding.


Helen is an approximately 30-year-old female dolphin at the Aquarium. She came to the Aquarium from the Enoshima Aquarium in Japan, and is also claimed to have been rescued from entanglement in a fishing net. Helen was part of a multi-year and multi-facility research project focusing on metabolic studies while she was at the Enoshima Aquarium, and is part of a pilot project to understand whale echolocation abilities to prevent whales in the future from becoming entangled in fishing nets.[15] She is distinguishable by the fact that her pectoral flippers are partially amputated due to damage from her entanglement. Helen's tankmate Chester the False Killer Whale joined her at the Wild Coast on Thursday, June 24, 2015. As of November 24, 2017 Helen is the only cetacean left at Vancouver Aquarium after her tank mate Chester died earlier that same day
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