On Monday, June 10, Canada passed Bill S-203, groundbreaking legislation to outlaw whale and dolphin captivity. Once the bill comes into effect, it will be a criminal offence to capture wild whales and dolphins from the ocean, confine them in tanks, breed them, or make them perform. The import or export of whales and dolphins… Read more » Animal Justice
33 total views, 0 today
OTTAWA – National animal law organization Animal Justice is applauding Parliament for passing Bill S-203, historic legislation that bans keeping whales and dolphins in captivity. The House of Commons voted in favour of the bill at third reading today. “This is a watershed moment for whales and dolphins, and powerful recognition that our country no… Read more » Animal Justice
42 total views, 0 today
OTTAWA – National animal law advocacy organization Animal Justice says the federal government should revoke or deny beluga export permits to Vancouver Aquarium and Marineland. The two aquariums are secretly attempting to ship beluga whales out of the country before commercial whale export becomes largely illegal.
Vancouver Aquarium apparently owns two beluga whales that it confines at Marineland, and has been granted permits to ship those belugas to another aquarium it runs in Spain. Meanwhile, Marineland is seeking five permits to ship belugas to unknown aquariums in the United States. Beluga whales are an internationally protected species under the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), and cannot be exported from Canada without a federal CITES permit.
Exporting beluga whales from Canada will soon be nearly impossible, with legislation to phase out whale and dolphin captivity expected to pass a final vote in Parliament within weeks. Bill S-203 will make it a criminal offence to confine whales and dolphins. Cetaceans already in captivity grandfathered in. It will also become a criminal offence to breed all whales or dolphins who are in captivity.
Bill S-203 also prohibits the international trade in cetaceans. Export will only be allowed if the government grants a special permit in best interests of the whale, or for science.
Marineland currently confines over 50 beluga whales (some are pregnant), five dolphins, and one orca. Vancouver Aquarium only has one remaining dolphin in its facility, and was banned from acquiring more cetaceans by the Vancouver Parks Board in 2017. Until now, the Vancouver Aquarium concealed from the public that it houses two belugas at Marineland, and instead said it was getting out of the whale captivity business.
Public sentiment is strongly against whale and dolphin captivity, as shown by strong support for Bill S-203, the 2017 Vancouver Parks Board prohibition on whale and dolphin captivity, and a 2015 Ontario law banning orca whale captivity.
“It is shocking that beluga export permits were issued in secret by the government on the eve of whale export being largely outlawed in Canada,” said lawyer Camille Labchuk, executive director of Animal Justice. “The public obviously has an intense interest in the well-being of beluga whales confined by Vancouver Aquarium and Marineland, yet no one was made aware of the permit applications, and the public was given no opportunity to comment on or review this disturbingly secretive, closed-door process.
“Canada is on the cusp of becoming a global leader by passing strong legislation to phase out whale and dolphin captivity, yet the export permits will allow the international whale captivity industry to continue to flourish. Beluga whales shipped abroad can be bred, with their baby belugas condemned to live in the misery of unnatural, concrete tanks and die without ever knowing the freedom of swimming in the ocean. This is completely contrary to the purpose of Bill S-203.
“Instead of allowing Marineland and Vancouver Aquarium to ship whales abroad to expand the captive cetacean industry, the government should support the Whale Sanctuary Project, which is seeking sites in Nova Scotia to build a sea-side sanctuary for retired whales and dolphins.”
For more information, contact:
55 total views, 0 today
Loppa (formerly Cece) has been with us for two years. She loves sleeping on top of her big brother Rusty and giving kisses and cuddles to her human family. She's smart, brave, happy, and brings us all great joy. Thank you SCARS for bringing us together. Erla Anderson
I adopted Teddy from you about ten years ago. Before you found him, he had a broken jaw caused by being kicked, was very hungry and dehydrated and needed immediate care. Here he is today and he just loves my home and more importantly me. Kindest Regards, Michael Lee
Hello everyone, my name is Smokey and I have had a tough go of it this last few weeks. The good people of the Alberta Spay Neuter Task Force took me in recently and I owe them my life for it. The volunteers thought I might have been poisoned because I had no idea
Hi everyone, we have already started working on the 2020 SCARS calendar which raises funds to help SCARS continue with their animal rescue initiatives. If you have an exceptional photo of a SCARS foster or if you adopted a SCARS animal and would like a chance to have them featured in our 2020 calendar,
Hi, I am Harley. I came into care during a SCARS Spay-Neuter-Return event in my community in early May 2019. I was badly injured due to being hit by a car a few days earlier. I was so happy to see them that I crawled right into the crate. Off to the vet for
- 0 Members.
- 13 Guests.