France Bans Captive Breeding of Orcas and Other Dolphins
Update: Sadly, France’s highest administrative court has just overturned this decision, meaning the ban will not go ahead for now. Please check PETA’s blog for updates as the situation develops.
There are currently about 30 captive dolphins in France, according to French newspaper Le Monde, including those held at Marineland in Antibes, which has been the focus of campaigns by PETA France and others for years. The facility keeps four orcas – Wikie, Inouk, Moana, and Keijo – locked up in concrete tanks and forces them to perform confusing tricks in exchange for food. PETA US recently purchased stock in Marineland’s parent company, Parques Reunidos, and will use shareholder resolutions to work to win the freedom of all the animals the park imprisons.
In addition to banning the captive breeding of orcas and other dolphins, the new rules give French marine parks three years to meet new minimum tank sizes, and facilities will no longer be permitted to use chlorine in the water. The rules also ban direct contact between the public and orcas and other dolphins, putting an end to “swimming with dolphins” attractions, which cause the animals great stress.
Marine parks’ business models have required that trainers sexually stimulate males and forcibly impregnate females so that their calves can be displayed for profit in tiny concrete tanks. No one with a conscience can support such wantonly cruel treatment of intelligent ocean-going mammals. Since the release of Blackfish, consumers have become more aware than ever that these facilities are pure hell for animals and will no longer stand for it – and around the world, marine parks’ profits are tanking as a result.
While places like Marineland can never atone for the harm that they’ve done, rather than increasing the size of their tanks over the next three years, as decreed by the new bill, they should instead put that money towards the creation of coastal sanctuaries, where the animals they’ve imprisoned can have some semblance of a natural life – something that they’ve been denied for so long.
Until every last animal is free, PETA urges kind people everywhere to join us and keep campaigning against Marineland and other marine abusement parks.
Please sign to urge Parques Reunidos to retire the orcas to a seaside sanctuary, where they could feel waves, hear wild pods, and finally have some semblance of a natural life.