Exklusively for zoos.media – 04th of March in 2021. Autor: Philipp J. Kroiss
The same procedure as every year: There are no dolphins from Taiji in the European conservation breeding population, period! Learn why this a fact.
There are no dolphins from Taiji in the European conservation breeding population, period!
Every year when the barbaric killing of dolphins in Taiji comes to media again, uneducated activists, journalists, and other enthusiasts claim that visiting zoos and aquariums with dolphins would contribute to the killing of the dolphins in Japan. That’s far away from the truth because the opposite is correct. The animal rights industry that aims to end every kind of animal husbandry started to spread these lies after the release of “The Cove”.
Breeding program includes no dolphins from Taiji
The European breeding program that most of the dolphinariums in Europe participate in, is focused on Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops (truncatus) truncatus. It only includes animals of this (sub)species of the bottlenose dolphins. As the name suggests, these dolphins don’t occur in the pacific where Taiji is. The bottlenose dolphins of the pacific waters are unsuitable for the conservation breeding program in Europe that, at least at the moment, only features Atlantic bottlenose dolphins.
So, everybody can be sure by visiting a dolphinarium in Europe that participates in the breeding program: you won’t find an animal that was captured in Taiji. Moreover, most of the dolphins were already born in human care, so there is also no doubt. Although these facts are easy for everyone to research, this wrong story is still around. It nothing more than a conspiracy theory.
Modern Zoos and aquariums are against the practices in Taiji
The European and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, EAZA and WAZA, same as specialized associations like EAAM posted statements against the practices in Taiji even before it was a trend to say that. Modern zoos and aquariums from these associations convinced modern Japanese zoos and aquariums to stop buying animals from the hunters on Taiji.
So, if you dislike what happens in Taiji, modern zoos and aquariums share your opinion and actually do a lot against that: breeding is the answer to prevent these wild captures and to convince other zoos and aquariums in Asia and elsewhere still supporting that to stop it. Most of the dolphinariums buying these dolphins are from China and they are not part of the zoo associations because it is impossible for them to participate if they support Taiji.
“The Cove” was the problem
The movie “The Cove” was a movie that shed a light on the ongoings in Taiji concerning dolphin hunting. That raised awareness but not everyone had good intentions. Before that movie, the trade with live dolphins in Taiji was more a regional thing. After the movie, international trade exploded. This was not good for the dolphins at all.
What keeps these hunts alive is basically trade with China, which wasn’t existing like this before the movie. This trade has got nothing to do with accredited and certified dolphinariums, zoos, or aquariums. It’s condemned by them. Animal rights activists claim that this is not true but just to end dolphin husbandry just as they aim to end every kind of animal husbandry. No one in the world of trustworthy zoos and aquariums supports those barbaric drive hunts in Taiji!