Vancouver Aquarium to no longer house whales, dolphins

Follows a Park Board ban in May

The Vancouver Aquarium will no longer be housing cetaceans at its Stanley Park facility, the organization announced Thursday.

The move comes on the heels of the Vancouver Park Board’s decision to ban cetaceans in May 2017.

The aquarium went to court to fight the Park Board’s decision in June.

“Having significantly contributed to tens of millions of people caring about whales and dolphins over the past four decades, Vancouver Aquarium will now focus on raising awareness of ocean issues impacting other marine animals and will no longer display cetaceans at its facility, with the exception of doing what is best for Pacific white-sided dolphin Helen and any need to use the Aquarium for the temporary accommodation of a rescued cetacean,” said Vancouver Aquarium CEO Dr. John Nightingale.

The aquarium has only one cetacean remaining; a Pacific white-sided dolphin named Helen.

Helen, who is in her early 30s, was rescued when she got tangled up in a fishing net in Japan.

“After many years in professional care and with only partial flippers, Helen is not a candidate for release,” said Nightingale. “However, dolphins are a social species so finding companionship for her is paramount.”

Two belugas, Qila and Aurora, died just nine days apart in November 2016.

PETA executive vice president Tracy Reiman said that “the Vancouver Aquarium has finally yielded to the sea change of public opinion and agreed not to sentence any more cetaceans to a miserable life and a premature death in a cramped tank.”

More to come.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Malindi Elmore: Shattering national running records at 39

She recently shattered the Canadian women’s marathon record at the Houston Marathon in January

Kelowna production takes ‘The Walk’ to explore sex trafficking

The goal is to get people thinking about the situation, according to the playwright

BREAKING: Kelowna RCMP to further investigate 12 sexual assault cases, create sexual assault unit

Recommendations come 5 months after it was revealed 40% of sexual assaults were deemed ‘unfounded’

Central Okanagan school board expands whistleblower policy

School employees will now be able to report criminal activity anonymously to an independent third party

Central Okanagan school board cancels trip to Europe over coronavirus fears

Students were supposed to visit Germany, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Italy

Clothing, jewelry, purses: RCMP ask court about disposal of evidence in Robert Pickton case

Pickton was sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 25 years for the murders of six women

Ryan nets hat trick in return as Senators beat Canucks 5-2

Ottawa winger received assistance for admitted alcohol problem

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs meet with provincial, federal ministers

Neither party speaking on the groundwork laid for tomorrow’s talks

Couple in crash on Highway 1 mistake Shuswap for Lower Mainland

Chase RCMP report Mercedes Benz collides with transport truck

Speaker ‘will not tolerate illegal activity’ on B.C. legislature grounds, says chief of staff

Chief of staff to the B.C. speaker Alan Mullen says situation with demonstrators appears ‘fluid’

MPs to examine privacy implications of facial-recognition technology used by RCMP

The MPs will look at how the technology affects the privacy, security and safety of children

Dates back to 2009: Calgary police lay charges in fraud involving semi-trucks

Three people from Calgary are facing charges that include fraud over $5,000

Laughing ladies and country artists sell out Okanagan venue

Alan Doyle and I Am Woman, Hear Me Laff! back to back sold out

Revelstoke mother and daughter return home after coronavirus quarantine in Asia

Jensine Morabito and her daughter were on Holland America’s Westerdam but did not catch the virus

Most Read