A single visitor may think they are powerless to stop this cruelty, but when tens of thousands of visitors and supporters band together their voice is very powerful. Tourism is the life blood of towns like Marmaris and there are many ways visitors can voice their objections to these barbaric practices. Change.org is one of the ways you can help to make a difference - please sign this petition.
They need to realise the strength of opposition and how much these dolphin parks are damaging the image of Turkey.It is only 30 years ago one could see dancing bears on the streets of Istanbul,they have gone and now people are ashamed they once 'enjoyed' this spectacle.Every email you send,every time you open your mouth and complain is one step nearer to dolphin parks in Turkey also becoming a thing of the past.
Please,please do not just say "how awful" and then walk away,it takes 2 minutes to sign a petition and share it on social network sites. No one who regards themselves as being a civilised human being can ignore this cruelty and,as money spending visitors,you have an incredibly strong,powerful voice here.Please use it.
A lone voice may get lost but remember that 20 million+ people visited Turkey last year if only 10% sign a petition that makes a big voice.Remember that petitions are also signed by people all over the world who may not have visited Turkey but care about these issues so now you have a voice of many millions and that makes a BIG...HUGE voice!
THE MISERY OF CAPTIVE DOLPHINS:
Wild vs. Captive:
Wild dolphins can swim over 40 miles a day, they engage in mating, foraging, fighting and play behavior with their pod members and they use their echolocation to explore their diverse ocean environment. In contrast, captive dolphins are forced to swim in endless circles in artificial habitats, interact with unfamiliar dolphins and other species, eat dead fish, and perform behaviors that are unnatural and in some cases painful. Captive dolphins also face exposure to human infection and bacteria, chemicals such as chlorine, and suffer from stress-related illnesses.
Things to look for at captive dolphin shows and facilities:
Dolphins poking their head above water. Captive dolphins spend up to 80% of their time at the surface of the water seeking scraps of food and attention. This is in direct contrast to wild dolphins who spend 80% of their time below the surface of the water playing, hunting and exploring.
Beaching themselves as part of the show so that visitors can pet or kiss them. If left in this position for an extended period, a dolphin's immense weight on land would slowly crush its internal organs. Captive dolphins have been trained to ignore their natural instincts; wild dolphins never voluntarily beach themselves.
Vocalizing for food rewards and nodding their head as if to say "yes" or "no" and offering "handshakes" or waving at the audience with their pectoral fins. Dolphins are trained through food deprivation. When they successfully perform a trick they are rewarded with scraps of fish. If a captive dolphin waves to you, it is because it is hungry, plain and simple.
Swimming in circles or constantly peering through the fences (stereotypical behavior) or floating listlessly on the surface of the water. These behaviors indicate that the animal is bored and psychologically stressed. Wild dolphins rarely lie still and with the entire ocean at their disposal, they would have no need to swim in circles!
All of the above are unnatural behaviors consistently exhibited by captive dolphins. Dolphins perform these behaviors because they have been trained to do so using "positive reinforcements" - the captivity industry's politically correct term for food deprivation. They wave to the audience and kiss the trainer because they are hungry, not because they desire human interaction and sadly, they often float motionless in their tanks between shows because they are bored or lonely.
It's ok to use captive-born dolphins, right? Wrong. While countless dolphins are still ripped from the wild to populate SWTD facilities, some programs use captive-born animals instead. They hold up their use of captive-born dolphins like a trophy, proof of their mission to conserve dolphins. The truth of the matter is that captive breeding programs offer no contribution to the conservation of wild dolphin populations, acting instead to replenish the industry's dolphins when supplies run low. The fact is, whether born in captivity or pulled kicking and screaming from the ocean, all dolphins share the same physiological and psychological needs.
Setting a bad example: Unfortunately, the commercial success of SWTD programs and the high profile of the larger facilities in the U.S. have spawned a legion of copycat operations in the Caribbean, Mexico, Latin America and around the world. These operations are the driving force behind a sharp rise in dolphin captures from the wild. Many of these new SWTD programs lack the necessary funds and staff to properly care for the dolphins.
Perhaps the most damaging aspect of the SWTD industry is the misconception it perpetuates among the general public. SWTD programs present themselves as "educational" and "eco-friendly". They market themselves to people who love dolphins, care about conservation and are looking for a tangible way to express this interest. What SWTD participants don't realise is that by patronising these programs, they are not only contributing to this expanding, profit-driven industry, but they are inadvertently ensuring that dolphins will continue to be captured from the wild and suffer in captivity. Supply and demand, put simply.
Love dolphins? Don't buy a ticket! Untold numbers of dolphins die during the notoriously violent wild captures. You only need to search the internet to see the many examples of this cruel process. These captures are carried out in secret - far from the public's eye - so obtaining an accurate number of dolphins killed is nearly impossible. What we do know is that the whole process is so traumatic that mortality rates of dolphins captured from the wild shoot up six-fold in the first five days of confinement.
Dolphins are highly intelligent mammals which need a natural environment for stimulation. Captive dolphins in parks like the one in Marmaris do not have this natural environment. Instead they have inadequate pools - a prison life.
Thank you for taking the time to read - please help us to make a difference. Make the voice of the majority heard.
Sherena Deveney started this petition with a single signature, and now has 1,140 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.