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TripAdvisor will no longer sell tickets to attractions such as Sea World on the Gold Coast, on the grounds of animal welfare.
In a monumental move, TripAdvisor will no longer support attractions with captive dolphins, porpoises and whales citing animal welfare reasons.
Dolphins around the world including in Australia live in small concrete tanks or artificial pools and are forced to perform unnatural tricks to a noisy audience for the reward of dead frozen fish.
Animal welfare concerns with holding dolphins in captivity for entertainment are compelling. Dolphin captivity is being banned around the world, and the New South Wales parliament is currently holding an inquiry about animals used in entertainment. TripAdvisor has made a courageous decision that I, as a passionate animal lover, fully support.
It is a decision that will affect dolphin parks all over the globe, including Sea World on the Gold Coast. The famous theme park has been under intense scrutiny from protesters for lack of transparency regarding animal welfare issues. Animal activists made nationwide news in December for disrupting the dolphin shows there.
Sea World continues to put profit above animal welfare even ignoring the RSPCA’s recommendations that they cease captive dolphin breeding.
Sea World controversially breed dolphins for life in captivity and it still forces dolphins to perform demeaning tricks. This doesn’t meet TripAdvisor’s animal welfare policy and therefore tickets will no longer be sold there.
The Queensland Government is outraged that Sea World will no longer be supported by TripAdvisor, citing the rescue work done by the organisation – but it is a small percentage of overall revenue.
The Queensland Government is outraged that Sea World will no longer be supported by TripAdvisor, citing the rescue work done by the organisation – but it is a small percentage of overall revenue. Sea World Australia spends less than one percent of its revenue on rescue and rehabilitation.
There is some legitimate rescue work happening but training “rescued” dolphins to perform circus tricks for profit is certainly inhumane. I understand that the Queensland Government wants to protect the iconic Gold Coast theme parks but it is unacceptable to purposely turn a blind eye to concerns of animal welfare and to heavily exaggerate conservation claims.
I applaud TripAdvisor for their ethical decision to end ticket sales to facilities that keep dolphins in captivity including Sea World on the Gold Coast. Dolphins should no longer suffer life in captivity for a few minutes of entertainment.
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