Innovators Nab PETA US Award for First-of-Its-Kind Animatronic Dolphin

For Immediate Release:

23 June 2020


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 222; [email protected]

Innovators Nab PETA US Award for First-of-Its-Kind Animatronic Dolphin

Edge Innovations Designers Recognised for Creating Robotic Dolphin That Will Help Replace Live Animals in Cruel Marine Parks

London – For creating a jaw-dropping animatronic dolphin that has the potential to upend the cruel captive marine mammal industry, PETA US is sending an Innovator for Animals Award to Roger Holzberg and Walt Conti of Edge Innovations.

“These visionary designers have thrown a lifeline to sensitive dolphins who are exploited in ‘swim with dolphins’ encounters and archaic marine parks,” says PETA Director of International Programmes Mimi Bekhechi. “They’re making waves with this high-tech invention that lets people get up close to dolphins without harming them.”

The Oscar-winning documentary The Cove exposes the cruel side of “swim with dolphins” programmes, including that young wild dolphins are traumatically abducted from their frantic mothers, sometimes illegally. The ones considered less attractive may be killed, and the others are sold to parks around the world, where they’re usually confined to cramped tanks and unable to swim long distances or escape conflicts with other frustrated dolphins. The stress of captivity can result in painful ulcers and infections and even premature death.

The public is against imprisoning cetaceans for entertainment. A customer survey by Virgin Holidays found that 92% of respondents “prefer to see animals in their natural habitat” rather than in captivity.

Despite this, SeaWorld continues to imprison dolphins, including orcas, and other far-ranging marine mammals in cramped tanks and force them to perform circus tricks for visitors – which is why PETA is urging TUI to join British Airways Holidays, Virgin Holidays,, and scores of other companies in refusing to promote SeaWorld or other marine parks.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit