Help Stop Dolphin Shows in Greece

Our friends with Stop Attica Zoological Park Dolphinarium (SAZPD) report that in 2012, the Greek Government banned the use of all animals in circuses following a campaign by many animal protection groups and animal rights activists.

But SAZPD and its allies have been dismayed to learn that now the Greek Government is considering excluding Greek zoos from the law that prohibits animal performances, on the grounds that viewing animals doing dumb tricks is educational.

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SAZPD points out that the conservation and education claim made by zoos is merely a veiled attempt to justify the exploitation of animals for profit.  Using animals in performances is an outdated, unnecessary, and cruel practice.

It is important to ask, SAZPD notes, just what children (and adults) learn watching majestic animals, made captive and forced to perform unnatural acts.  Animal performances teach people to exploit animals, not to respect them.  No research has shown that individuals attending animal performances are particularly interested in the population status of a species or what steps are being taken to ensure its survival in the wild.

Ric O’Barry points out that Japan has more dolphinariums than any other country in the world (more than 100 according to the Elsa Nature Conservancy of Japan).  And yet Japan also has the largest slaughter of dolphins in the world – where is the conservation benefit of all those dolphinariums?

SAZPD urges the Greek government to take this opportunity to show the world that Greece truly cares about animals and to keep the ban on all animal performances.  SAZPD also urges their government to stop the illegal dolphin shows at Attica Zoological Park and to ban cetacean captivity as other countries have done.

Audiences seeing these dolphins perform unnatural behaviors that would not occur in the wild are not educated at all, but mis-educated.

Sign the petition:

Send your own message (be polite!):

Mr. Athanasios Tsaftaris, Minister of Rural Development and Food – [email protected]

Mr. Ioannis Maniatis, Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change – [email protected]
Photograph courtesy of Stop Attica Zoological Park Dolphinarium.

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About Ric O'Barry

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Ric O’Barry, Dolphin Project Founder & Director has worked on both sides of the captive dolphin issue, making him an invaluable asset in the efforts to end exploitation. He worked for 10 years within the dolphin captivity industry, and has spent the past 40 working against it.

In the 1960s, O’Barry was employed by the Miami Seaquarium, where he captured and trained dolphins, including the five dolphins who played the role of Flipper in the popular American TV-series of the same name. He also trained Hugo, the first orca kept in captivity east of the Mississippi. When Kathy, the dolphin who played Flipper most of the time, died in his arms, O’Barry realized that capturing dolphins and training them to perform silly tricks is simply wrong.

From that moment on, O’Barry knew what he must do with his life. On the first Earth Day, 1970, he launched a searing campaign against the multi-billion dollar dolphin captivity industry and has been going at it ever since.

Over the past 40 years, Ric O’Barry has rescued and rehabilitated dolphins in many countries around the world, including Haiti, Colombia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Brazil, the Bahamas Islands and the United States. He is a leading voice in the fight to end brutal dolphin hunts in Japan, the Solomon Islands, the Faroe Islands, and wherever else they occur.

O’Barry has been recognized by many national and international entities for his dedicated efforts, such as being voted Huffington Post’s 2010 Most Influential Green Game Changer, and being listed on O Magazine’s 2010 Power List – Men We Admire for his “Power of Passion.” O’Barry received an Environmental Achievement Award, presented by the United States Committee for the United Nations Environmental Program. He has done countless interviews with such prestigious news programs as Larry King Live, Anderson Cooper 360, the Mike Huckabee Show, and the Oprah Winfrey Show.

His book Behind the Dolphin Smile was published in 1989; a second book, To Free A Dolphin was published in September 2000. Both of them are about his work and dedication. He is the star of the Academy Award-winning documentary The Cove and the Animal Planet television series Blood Dolphin$.

Author: Ric O'Barry


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