A sick Cetacean should not be taken advantage of for her monetary value.
This video was taken by a tourist visiting the Florida Keys. Please listen to the President of the Marine Mammal Conservancy, Robert Lingenfelser, as he tells the hotel guest that this pilot whale has one totally collapsed right lung and one-third collapsed left lung (if that is true coming up on 90 days after the main stranding event).
This animal is suffering from collapsed lungs, or Robert is lying to the hotel guest for donations, either way something is seriously wrong here.
There are many people from the hotel watching this pilot whale, which is in rehab. You can't see most of them but you can hear them applaud after Robert does his little show soliciting funds/donations from the hotel guests. He can be heard inviting people to make donations by either going on the web or coming over to the property. This is clearly "Public Display."
MMC has a history of displaying rehabbing dolphins and has been warned by NMFS not to do so in the past. I personally volunteered at MMC and know for a fact that this animal should be euthanized as soon as possible to end her suffering. There is no sign of improvement. This animal is being kept alive only to profit from it.
- National Marine Fisheries Service
- Executive Director, Marine Mammal Commission
Timothy J. Ragen, Ph.D.
Pilot Whale R300 is being paraded as one of the "7 Wonders of the Florida Keys," while President of the Marine Mammal Conservancy, Robert Lingenfelser, tells hotel guests that she has one totally collapsed right lung and one-third collapsed left lung, and then asks for donations. She is continuing to suffer for MMC's profit. I urge NMFS to step in and end her misery.
Now that R 301 has been transferred to Sea World Orlando, what is to become of R 300 currently at Marine Mammal Conservancy?
It is my understanding that this animal is now considered to be a " solitary animal." Under NMFS regulations a solitary animal cannot be released. Also the fact that she is still showing signs of pneumonia after almost 90 days of rehab is not a good sign.
This animal also has much difficulty in swimming on its own and is basically under human attendance since day one of the stranding. The scoliosis suffered by this animal is most likely irreversible. Are there any captive facilities willing to take this animal at this time? Yet Mr. Lingenfelser continues to parade this ill animal and squeeze all the media publicity he can out of it.
I beg you to please stop this activity and have some respect for the whale. Do not allow this circus type atmosphere to continue.
It is my understanding that there are no captivity facilities that want her because of her size her age and the scoliosis, pneumonia, and a complicated MRSA strain. With little or no chance of release, even if by some miracle she could fully recover, and with no captive facility is willing to take her, why are we prolonging this animal suffering? This event has crossed from rehab into cruelty.
I urge you to investigate the situation at MMC with Pilot Whale R300. If she is found to be suffering from the ailments being used to raise money in her name, please ensure that she is humanely euthanized to end her suffering. If she is healthy, she needs to be moved to an appropriate rehab facility where she is not being used to raise money.
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