SeaWorld could have some explaining to do.

An orca known as “Granny” J2 (pictured above) has been monitored since her discovery in the 1930’s! She is now 103 years old and was recently spotted again off the west coast of Canada with her pod. Her pod consists of her children, grandchildren, and ever her great-grandchildren! One of her grandchildren we know as Canuck. Canuck was captured by Seaworld at an early age, and reportedly died at just 4 years old.

As her pod has grown, Granny has kept up with them magnificently. In fact when she was most recently spotted she had just finished swimming an 800 mile journey from the coast of northern California. Orcas are meant to have the space to travel 100 miles per day, but some will barely swim a collective mile in Seaworld’s holding tanks.

This is not only because of the lack of space, but also because of the listlessness of the orcas themselves. Being separated from a pod is known to cause horrific mental and emotional stress, and can prevent calves from developing properly, or healthily. They can become lazy, depressed or even violent.

SeaWorld has claimed that “no one knows for sure how long killer whales live,” but the The Whale and Dolphin Conservation project estimates that whales born in captivity only live an average of 4.5 years. The majority of SeaWorld’s killer whales die before they reach their 20s. The NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) estimates that wild female orcas, such as Granny, live up to 50 - 60 years on average.

While it’s true that most wild orcas don’t live as long as Granny has, their lifespans are still drastically longer than those of SeaWorld’s. Wild orcas also have the opportunity to fill their lives with much more swimming, exploration, variety and bonding with their family and friends - in other words, their lives are likely filled with much more joy.

Pledge with us here at TurnTides not to visit a marine park until their orca and dolphin tanks have been emptied.

If you’d like to learn more visit us HERE.

2

$eaWorld is FURIOUS at the new Blackfish documentary!

Blackfish mainly follows SeaWorld’s orca Tilikum, who has killed three people, and interviews former SeaWorld employees who have a lot to say about their old job! However all of the information they are using to fight back with, makes little or no sense!

SeaWorld responded to the Blackfish film with 8 assertions, and the film makers responded to every single one. Not only that, but the Blackfish team made all 8 of SeaWorld’s assertions null and void.

You can read the SeaWorld Vs Blackfish conversation here!

Make sure you check out Blackfish in a cinema near you! They need all the support they can get, and we plan to give as much as we can to them!

It’s that time of year again!

Baby turtles are hatching and covering our beaches with cute cute cute! But did you know that travelling from their clutches (nests) to the ocean can be a dangerous ordeal for these little guys?

Baby sea turtles face both natural dangers and man-made dangers during their journey across the sand, on their way to the warm Gulf waters.

The biggest natural danger for these brave babies may include the high risk of being eaten by birds. The biggest man-made danger is definitely poaching.

In order to protect these beautiful little creatures, a group of volunteers have built a human wall to guide the baby turtles back to the sea!

We salute you, you kind, caring people. The world needs more hearts like yours.

GREAT NEWS!

India has officially declared dolphins as “Non-Human Persons” and has now banned holding them in captivity for all “commercial entertainment, private or public exhibition and interaction purposes whatsoever”.

The statement issued by B.S. Bonal, the member secretary of the Central Zoo Authority of India, acknowledges that cetaceans in general do not survive well in captivity, saying, “Confinement in captivity can seriously compromise the welfare and survival of all types of cetaceans by altering their behaviour and causing extreme distress.”

Noting that India’s national aquatic animal, the Ganges River dolphin, as well as the snubfin dolphin are listed in Schedule-I and all cetacean species are listed in Schedule II part I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, the ministry said it is important to protect these endangered species from captivity and exploitation.

“Whereas cetaceans in general are highly intelligent and sensitive, and various scientists who have researched dolphin behavior have suggested that the unusually high intelligence; as compared to other animals means that dolphin should be seen as ‘non-human persons’ and as such should have their own specific rights and is morally unacceptable to keep them captive for entertainment purpose,” the ministry said.

We can only hope that every other country follows in their footsteps!

3

BREAKING: The International Court of Justice has ruled Japanese whaling in the Antarctic Ocean completely illegal! The whales of the world have a reason to be happy today!

This is a much awaited ruling, as people have been campaigning for an end to Japanese “research” whaling in the Southern Ocean since before 1987.

The Japanese fleets used “scientific research” as their excuse for annually culling whales, but over the years groups have fought hard to expose this whaling expedition for what it really was - a cover-up for commercial hunting.

If you would like to read more about the Japanese’s fake scientific whaling expeditions, you can do so HERE. While this fake scientific whaling has now come to an end in the Southern Ocean, there are plenty of other stretches of water that it can take place, but it is certainly a step in the right direction!

Keep fighting for the whales with us here at Turn Tides!

"The Antarctic icefish live in water colder than freezing — 2 degrees below zero Centigrade.

Ocean water doesn’t freeze at this temperature because it’s full of salt. The blood of the icefish is less salty than seawater; instead, it keeps itself from freezing by using ice proteins, sometimes called antifreeze proteins, that attach to ice crystals forming in the blood stream.

Once the ice crystals are coated with antifreeze protein, they can’t stick together, so they don’t grow. The icefish of the Antarctic have used this adaptation to become very successful — making up 95% of the fish biomass around Antarctica.

Photo: Uwe Kils

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It was announced today (14/April/2013) that $eaWorld are set to face allegations regarding the bullying and rough treatment of their sea creatures. It is believed that this cruelty is the primary reason as to why one of their Orcas has become a dangerous killer.

Tilikum the Killer Whale was captured while he was very young. He was then sent to $eaWorld in order to be trained as a show-Orca. While in captivity the Killer Whales were becoming more and more traumatized by their horrific treatment.

When they are not humoring children and adults during their shows, these Orcas and Dolphins are kept in very tight containers (shown above), fed antidepressants and treated harshly by their trainers in order to ‘perfect their moves’ faster. If the Orcas are caught too young, they are also seen to be bullied by their elders.

Tilikum is thought to have been mentally scarred by these experiences, and due to his aggression, confusion and depression has caused the deaths of two of his trainers, and one civilian who sneaked into the show-tank with the Orca after $eaWorld had closed for the night.

A writer named Cowperthwaite interviewed former staff members at $eaWorld who expressed concerns regarding keeping the animals in captivity. 11 theme parks are in $eaWorld’s possession, and together they earned an estimated $1.4bn in revenue last year roughly 24 million visitors. $eaWorld is keen to avoid any bad publicity.

(Photo by Red Huber - showing Tilikum in an isolated tank after the third fatal attack, this time on his trainer).

9

Think China’s air quality is bad? Then you don’t want to see their water! Last month (March 2013) pollution in Chinese coastal waters was found to have DOUBLED in only 1 year!

The State Oceanic Administration (SOA) found that pollution from 72 monitored rivers increased by 17 million tonnes in 2012 and included 46,000 tonnes of heavy metals and 93,000 tonnes of oil. While discarded plastic rubbish accounted for 80% of pollution in coastal waters. More than 80% of certain Chinese coasts are built up with factories and other construction projects, while only 5% is still in a natural state.

As a result of the state of China’s coastal waters, many species of fish in the East China Sea are on the brink of extinction.

We are sorry to tell you all that the iconic species, Manta Rays, have now been moved from CITES Appendix III to Appendix II. This means the species are very vulnerable, and that the trading of the species must be controlled from here after to allow their population to replenish so that the Manta Ray can survive.

To find out more about what you can do to protect the Manta Ray from your locality, send us a message HERE.

2

People expressed their disgust for a marriage proposal in the Philippines, in which the groom-to-be wrote his “big question” on the body of an entertainment dolphin.

Ocean Adventure Subic Bay posted pictures to their Facebook page of Ronaleen and Arthur’s wedding proposal. However, after the pictures were besieged by furious comments, the album was taken down.

The park insisted that the white liquid used to “pop the question” was zinc oxide, a moisturizer and sunscreen that is safe for dolphins and is also used as moisturizer by humans. It is also known to easily wash off in water. "This is the same product we use to protect the skin of stranded whales and dolphins brought to our Dolphin Rescue Center. Animals that come in sick and injured often require people in the water with them around the clock to hold them afloat. During the day, zinc oxide is applied to the dolphin’s back to protect it from the harmful rays of the sun."

However, some had their doubts as the writing in the picture above does look a little more sturdy than a moisturizer/sunscreen combo. Even those who believed it was zinc oxide still expressed their upset:

  • "Not only do you force these intelligent animals to live this way, you paint them too?" commented Facebook user Kira Baulesh.

  • "Shame on Ocean Adventure. This is not cute. You embarrass our culture," put in Leonora Corate.
  • "Seriously this is so bad in taste and disrespectful," said Vivus Loh.

Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) Director Theresa Mundita Lim said that "from an ethical point of view, it is simply not acceptable". Jom Acebes, a scientist working in humpback whale conservation, agrees by saying ”the issue here is not the safety of using zinc oxide but the ethics behind the act of using the dolphin as a living poster board…It compounds the issue of keeping dolphins in captivity for human entertainment”.

What do you think? Is it just cute, harmless fun? Or is this another form of inhumane entertainment?

Every year on September 1st the brutal mass-murdering of dolphins takes place in Japan’s ” Secret Cove”, in Taiji. 2013 was no exception.

2 days ago fishermen and buyers from marine parks (such as $eaWorld) gathered in the bay and began their hunt of up to 2,000 dolphins. But something was different this time…

For the first time in history, the cove was completely taken over by protesters, who braved against the Japanese law enforcers in order to have their hearts heard.

This man pictured above actually dove under the water, and upon hearing the screams and cries of the many families of dolphins, arose to the surface in tears - it was both touching and surreal.

TurnTides would like to thank you, the brave activists who broke into the cove (despite many signs, fences, railings, and people trying to stop you) in order to show Japan the truth. In our eyes, you are truly heroes among men.

For more information about dolphins and the annual dolphin slaughter at the Cove, visit HERE.

2

The above graph shows all of the Killer Whale deaths in $eaWorld facilities between 1971 and 2010. That is 36 deaths in 39 years, so roughly 1 dead Orca every single year.

Most of the deaths were caused by diseases, viruses and general illnesses that are virtually unseen and unheard of happening to wild Orca’s.

We at TurnTides are very strongly out to boycott $eaWorld and their cruel entertainment shows. Are you with us?

"There are seven species of sea turtle, all of which are listed on the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species.

The cheloniidae family includes all the sea turtles apart from the leatherback. Sea turtles can live up to 80 years and spend most of their lives submerged. 

They mate at sea and the females come ashore to lay their eggs in nests dug into the sand. A hatchling’s gender is dependent on the temperature of the sand and there is concern that climate change will affect sea turtle populations as warmer temperatures may cause an increase in the proportion of hatching female turtles and a decrease in the number of males.”

Taken from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/life/Sea_turtle

This would cause less availability for sea turtles to mate in the future, reduce the sea turtle’s population as a whole.

If you would like to learn more about Sea Turtles and what you can do to help, don’t hesitate to contact us here on Turn Tides.

5

Catch me if you can!

This super quick adult seal knew its speed and agility were far more advanced than that of this great white shark. This lead to the playful seal twirling around the shark, swimming in front of its mouth and even tauntingly biting the sharks tail!

After this 15 minute game of cat-and-mouse, the seal zipped off into the distance and left the shark to continue its peaceful glide through the ocean. The shark remained very calm throughout the whole ordeal and as he did not pursue the seal at the end of their fun, the majestic great white obviously thought of the seal as more of a friend then some food. (“Fish are friends, not food”, anyone?). The shark was described by the photographer (Marc Henauer) as more of a “gaming friend” than a predator to the seal.

Proof that sharks don’t need to eat everything that comes their way! If you’d like to learn more about sharks or seals, visit us here at Turn Tides!

8

Keep Our Sea Plastic-Bag Free!

  1. Approx. 380 billion plastic bags are used in the United States every year. That’s more than 1,200 bags per US resident, per year.

  2. Worldwide, as many as 1 trillion plastic bags are used each year.  This equates to 100 million barrels of oil! 

  3. The United Nations Environment Programme estimates that there are 46,000 pieces of plastic litter floating in every square mile of ocean. This means there is more plastic in the sea than plankton.

  4. Plastic bags are often mistakenly ingested by animals such as whales and turtles, clogging their intestines which results in death by starvation or suffocation. Other animals such as birds become entangled in plastic bags and either drown or are no longer able to fly.

  5. These plastic toxins end up in fish, which end up on our plates, which end up inside our bodies.

  6. Approximately 14 million trees are cut down every year for paper bag production. Paper production requires hundreds of thousands of gallons of water as well as toxic chemicals like sulfurous acid, which can lead to acid rain and water pollution. So what we’re saying is: CANVAS BAGS RULE!

  7. Less than 3% of plastics are recycled worldwide!

  8. It takes 1,000 years for plastic to disintegrate. This means that every piece of plastic ever made still exists on earth today.

Say no to disposable plastic, and try to use your own reusable canvas tote bags for shopping. You could be saving the life of one of the beautiful animal species above.

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