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Updates are on the way, just that eta is uncertain - traffic jam and problems as listed in our last entry, "Buzz-out. Greetings from Cyber Purgatory". *points to first entry*

Thank you for your patience, and interest, and see you there,
29 June 2006

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Do the humane thing: Return dolphins to the wild (ST, 20030920)

Underwater World states that the dolphins are never deprived of food to induce them to perform. However, its staff have revealed to us - recorded on video - that: 'The time we feed them is actually during the show. When they do something correct, we feed them. This is positive reinforcement, a method used by us to train the dolphins.'

Dolphins have it particularly rough. They are family-oriented animals, often found living as 3 or more generation families in the same pod. They have complex social structures and long memories. Behind that human-smiley face, is a tale of terror and abuse.

Have you ever wondered where did the dolphin jumping through the hoops come from? Do they enjoy entertaining you with hoop-jumping? What do they do, and where are they kept, once you leave the amphitheatre? The truth is one freaking ugly mo-fo, guaranteed to leave the worstest of lingering taste in your mouth.

"Dolphinariums support the massacre At 5 AM on October 27th several fishermen were gathered by the killing lagoon. They were accompanied by about 20 young people in wetsuits, of which some displayed the logo of the Taiji Whale Museum, World Dolphin Resort and Dolphin Base. All these dolphinariums are located in Taiji, and the young divers were obviously dolphin trainers/handlers. They were here to select the best-looking dolphins for dolphin swim programs and dolphin shows. The bottlenose dolphins captured yesterday were still swimming in a tight circle, huddled together for safety. Dolphin trainers cover up their cruel activities In January this year, One Voice succeeded in videotaping the gruesome scene as dolphin trainers, working side by side with the Taiji fishermen, drove a pod of more than 100 bottlenose dolphins into the killing lagoon to select the ones that fit the desired criteria for public display. The trainers killed at least four dolphins in the selection process. October 27th the same violent scene was repeated, but this time the trainers made sure we couldn‚t videotape it. Instead of carrying out the selection in the large cove that can be videotaped from a public road, they drove the dolphins into a smaller cove that is hidden between two mountains, out of our view. The fishermen and trainers locked the selected dolphins up in small steel cages in Taiji harbor. These cages already contained several dolphins from this season's dolphin hunt, awaiting shipment to various zoos and aquaria. Meanwhile, the dolphin trainers let the fishermen kill all the dolphins they didn‚t want. All the babies are killed There were several very small babies in the pod. They still depended on their mothers‚ milk for survival and were too young to train. So the fishermen killed them, and the dolphin trainers did absolutely nothing to help them. The dolphins cried as the fishermen slashed them with hooks and knives and the lagoon filled with their blood. It takes a dolphin up to six minutes to die, a former fisherman from another Japanese fishing village has told us. "And they cry the entire time, with their eyes wide open," he said. The dolphins fought for their lives, even as their guts were ripped from their bellies and blood gushed out of their blowholes. But their screams had no effect on the trainers. (source Taiji : the Dolphin Torture Chamber)

What is Taiji? It is a place in Japan, famed for its annual dolphin slaughter and capture.

The Facts of Dolphin Captivity speaks for itself. The great Jacques Cousteau believed "captive dolphins are conditioned and deformed and bear little resemblance to dolphins living in freedom in the sea. It's like studying human psychology only in prisons, which leads, obviously, to misinterpretations and absurd generalizations."

The Captive Dolphin Awareness Foundation has it right. Their mission is to "raise public awareness through education about the consequences of keeping dolphins captive with the ultimate goal of providing all dolphins with the quality of life they deserve in their natural habitat."

"Natural habitat" - that is what all humans should be striving for all the life that shares this earth with us.

Just this February past, a letter was published in ST, exhorting the Dolphin Lagoon in Singapore to release its prisoner-dolphins. So far, nothing seemed to be done. But then, the fact that a letter in support of release was printed shows there are people who are aware and willing to speak up.

In March, the case of sharks crammed into a tank far too small for them also surfaced. Even though there are letters questioning the pertinent points of the case, the authorities recommended the release of the two smaller black reef sharks, while deeming the 2m wide tank 'adequate' for the 2m long long nurse shark (nurse sharks will reach 4m at maturity).

So are we up to it? Let's say I'm still not sure if the glass is half-full or half-empty. - Go to Casefile: Cruel Singapore. Hack-care Singapore.

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