Take a good look at the first 3 photos in this set and remember them next time you want to see a dolphin in captivity. That’s what your money goes to. All companies that keep dolphins captive are inter-connected. Just remember those may be your dollars you paid being handed off under the table to import a wild caught dolphin, or your dollars may be directly handed to the man who captured and/or killed the dolphins like you saw in that show.
Still need more convincing that dolphin captivity is wrong? Here are some fast facts:
Dolphins in the wild spend around 80% of their time exploring, feeding, and socializing underwater. Captive dolphins spend about 80% of their time at the surface because they are logging lifelessly at the surface, looking for food/attention, or waiting for commands by their trainers who control every aspect of their life.
In the wild dolphins are documented to swim 40 or MORE miles per day. In captivity, they are confined to an area that is dramatically smaller, not allowing them to swim or dive as long or deep as they would in the wild. Animals can develop stereotypical behaviors from lack of space to act naturally in.
In the wild dolphins utilize their extreme intelligence by spending a lot of time hunting and developing hunting techniques together. This gives the animals an opportunity to problem solve, get stimulation, and socialize with each other. In captivity animals are fed dead frozen fish in a limited variety (sometimes unnatural to the animal’s typical diet), taking away that massive chunk of their wild daily lives from them and leaving them under stimulated.
Dolphins are highly social, and although they do not always stay together for life, they form complex societies and dialects, which are disrupted in captivity and cause aggression and frustration between tank mates who are forced to live together.
Dolphins that are put through swim-with programs are subject to humans constantly invading their heavily confined space. Not only does this put dolphins at risk of contracting disease from the tourists and tourists at risk of being injured by these wild animals, these programs give the dolphins no peace from humans who are constantly trying to interact with them by force.