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|Originally Posted: 28 Jan 2011|
Tell The Mirage to Shut Its Dolphin Death Pool
FROM Born Free USA
Tell The Mirage to shut its dolphin death pool. Despite The Mirage’s dismal record, the permit to import more dolphins was granted. Shockingly, the NMFS is not required to consider the welfare of the individual captive dolphins in its decision-making process.
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INFORMATION / TALKING POINTS
Whether caught wild or born captive, orcas and dolphins in captivity are sentenced to a life of confinement deprived of normal social and environmental interaction — but a 75 percent death rate, even among skeptics, should raise a huge red flag. At The Mirage hotel’s Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat, it’s business as usual: Three-quarters of the dolphins die prematurely!
In 2009, Born Free USA attempted to stop The Mirage from filling its tanks with more dolphins by appealing to the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to deny the import permit for two more dolphins from Dolphin Cove, an infamous captive facility in Bermuda.
Adding to the urgency of our plea, a dolphin named Sergeant Pepper died at The Mirage just two weeks after Born Free USA submitted comments opposing this permit. Despite The Mirage’s dismal record, the permit to import more dolphins was granted. Shockingly, the NMFS is not required to consider the welfare of the individual captive dolphins in its decision-making process.
Further, The Mirage is not required to prove that its display is educational nor that it contributes to conservation of the species in the wild. Public viewing of captive dolphins in concrete enclosures performing human-taught “tricks” that they would not otherwise perform in the wild projects a false picture of the animals’ natural lives. Forcing wild animals to live in environments that are incapable of accommodating their natural behavior is not conservation, educational or humane. The most important conservation message that people need to learn is how to value these animals without turning them into commodities for our entertainment.
Born Free USA has a long history of advocating against the use of marine mammals in captive displays and swim-with-dolphin programs. These highly intelligent and sensitive animals do not need to be kept hostage in the middle of the desert for the sole purpose of turning a profit for The Mirage hotel.
Thank you for everything you do for animals!