Germany - Close the Last Dolphinariums

  • by: Judith B.
  • recipient: Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

Germany is one of 15 EU countries that still has dolphinariums, enterprises that exhibit dolphins or small whales for profit. It has three such places, two of which show absolutely no signs of closing any time soon.

Captivity is a terrible thing for dolphins and whales. Instead of inhabiting vast stretches of ocean, they are confined to tiny concrete tanks, living bleak lives. Unsurprisingly, they suffer from physical and stress-related illnesses and often don't live very long.

Aquariums that exhibit cetaceans are little more than modern-day circuses, exploiting intelligent animals for commercial gain and the cruelty is inexcusable. Making dolphins perform tricks for a paying audience does nothing to help their conservation, quite the reverse in fact, since many of these dolphins are taken from the wild.

Ask Germany to take the lead on animal welfare in Europe by closing the remaining dolphinariums and releasing or retiring the last few captive dolphins.

We the undersigned ask that the remaining dolphinariums in Germany be closed. Keeping cetaceans in captivity is widely acknowledged to be cruel and several EU countries including the UK no longer have captive whales or dolphins on show to the public.

Germany has a reputation for being progressive on animal welfare and environmental issues and this shouldn't be an exception. The remaining dolphins can be returned to the wild if feasible or retired to more natural facilities where they can live slightly better lives.

Marine scientists can advise on the most appropriate course of action for each individual dolphin. What should not happen is that these modern day circuses continue to exploit dolphins for commercial gain into the indefinite future.

Thank you for your attention

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