7 Dolphin Facts That SeaWorld Hopes You Won't Learn
We all know dolphins are adorable, but there is a lot more to them than that! These seven dolphin facts will PROVE that these intelligent, sweet animals should NOT be locked up like prisoners at SeaWorld:
1. Dolphins Are Ridiculously Smart!
2. Dolphins Need to Be Free
Dolphins in the wild swim vast distances every day with their extended families, playing and exploring new territory together. Dolphins at SeaWorld are confined to tiny tanks and see very little each day other than the same concrete walls. Dolphins navigate by echolocation, but in pools, the reverberations from their own sonar bounce off the walls.
3. Captivity Truly Does Kill
Sixty-two bottlenose dolphins have DIED at SeaWorld parks in just 10 years! Sixteen of those were stillborn babies. SeaWorld never figured out what killed three dolphins at its now-defunct Ohio park over the course of 11 days in March 2000. SeaWorld’s senior veterinarian said:
“We know the animals died from an inability to hold down or take in enough nutrition to survive. We still don’t know what actually caused the illness. We wish we understood.”
4. Cheap Tricks Can HURT Dolphins
In 2008, Sharky, a captive dolphin at SeaWorld’s Discovery Cove in Orlando, Florida, was fatally injured while performing an aerial trick. He collided in mid-air with another dolphin and subsequently died. And in 2012 at SeaWorld’s San Antonio facility, two dolphins performing a jumping trick crashed, ejecting one from the tank onto the concrete walkway below. The dolphin lay bleeding and helpless as guests looked on.
5. Touch Tanks Are Trouble
Interactive programs that allow the public to pet, kiss, or even “ride” dolphins invade the animals’ already diminished worlds and are dangerous for both the animals and human participants. Dolphins in “petting pools” can become neurotic and anxious as a result of constant poking and prodding and can become sick from exposure to bacteria. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has cited SeaWorld for several instances in which members of the public, including children, were bitten and injured at the facility’s dolphin-petting pools.
6. Families Are Torn Apart
Dolphins communicate with each other through distinct whistles and body language. They live in pods and have their own family histories. The constraints of captivity deny dolphins the opportunity to engage in their natural social patterns.
7. Captive Dolphins Are Stressed
Captive dolphins demonstrate a variety of stress-driven and neurotic behavior, including aggressiveness and self-injury. Dolphins are often dosed with antacids to treat stress-induced ulcers. You can help the dolphins imprisoned at SeaWorld by never visiting the company’s theme parks and by urging your friends and family to stay away, too.