Dori Edwards, Global Animal
The Humane Society of the United States has created a petition against the Georgia Aquarium. The facility is requesting a permit from the National Marine Fisheries Service to import 12 wild caught Beluga Whales for entertainment purposes. The Belugas will be taken from their natural environment and placed in a tank to be guffawed at by insensitive spectators.
The permit also entails the legal transport of these marine mammals 6,000 miles by plane. The animals will also be transferred from one container and plane to another during a layover in Belgium. These conditions will be extremely stressful for the whales, and not to mention, their heightened noise sensitivity will be exposed to hours worth of screaming engines.
Animals are not meant to be kept in captivity. In May 2012 the first captive-born Beluga in the Georgia Aquarium died. The calf was underweight and regardless of the 24 hour care, the Beluga Whale could not be saved.
There are several different, unique genomes of Beluga whales and many are currently endangered due to oil and gas drilling. Containing 12 Belugas is cruel and will only enhance the current danger this species is in.
At Marineland in Canada, 40 Beluga Whales are held captive in horrible conditions. The HSUS is suggesting the Georgia Aquarium rescue these whales instead. The Marineland mammals would be in better circumstances in the Georgia Aquarium, not that any captivity is conducive to the animal’s needs, and would travel a lesser distance to reach their new destination.
Sign the petition and help The Humane Society of the United States stop 12 wild caught Beluga Whales from being stolen from their natural environment.