Featured Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Earlier this week, the Ministry of Fisheries and Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority gave permission to move three beluga whales from the aquarium they called home in Shanghai to a “sanctuary” in Vestmannaeyjar.
According to WDC, the beluga whales were supposed to go through “beluga bootcamp,” where they were to go through months of mental and physical training to “be more like wild belugas again.” (Seriously?) However, a source tells Awesome Ocean that one of the belugas, Jun Jun, has died presumably due to chronic stress from social mismanagement under animals activists care. Rest in peace, Jun Jun.
Jun Jun, Little Grey, and Little White were three female belugas that lived at Ocean World Aquarium in Shangai until 2012, when Merlin Entertainments purchased the aquarium and began claiming they were creating the world’s first sanctuary for captive whales in Vestmannaeyjar, a town and archipelago off the south coast of Iceland.
A “sanctuary”? Don’t you mean a sea pen? An activist run facility that holds them in an environment they are not used to, exposing them to temperatures they cannot handle and to and bacteria they are not immune to. What exactly is the point of taking these animals away from the love and care they receive from their caretakers to a completely unfamiliar and terrifying place.
If Vestmannaeyjar sounds familiar to you, it’s probably because you have heard it before. Remember Keiko? Despite his happy ending in his hollywood movie, Free Willy, Keiko did not live happily ever after. He was taken from his facility without the resources and the knowledge to properly care for him. Just another cautionary tale about the mistakes of trusting those who claim they have the animal’s best interest at heart, but have little to no experience actually working with the animals.
According to Ellioi Vignission, the mayor of Vestmannaeyjar, these beluga whales were going to be “nothing like Keiko.” Clearly, that has proven to be untrue. History always repeats itself, Mr. Vignission.
More whales will continue to die because animal activists don’t actually know how to manage these animals. Animal rights and the activists that push their ridiculous agendas have very little to do with caring for animals in a humane manner and everything to do with humanizing them and insisting they need to be treated as equals with people. When will the activists learn? Sea pens DON’T WORK.