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Animal Welfare - Senate Select Committee - Report - Dolphins and whales in captivity

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The Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia


Dolphins and Whales in Captivity


Presented and ordered to be printed 29 November 1985

Parliamentary Paper No. 498/1985


Dolphins and whales in captivity

Report by the Senate Select Committee on Animal Welfare



Report by the

Senate Select Committee on Animal Welfare

Australian Government Publishing Service Canberra 1985

c Commonwealth of Australia 1985 ISBN 0 644 04503 5

Printed by Canberra Publishing and Printing Co., Fyshwick. A.C.T.



Senator G . Georges (Queensland) , Chairman

Senator D. Brownhil 1 (New South Wales) *

Senator B. Cooney (Victoria) *

Senator N.K. Sanders (Tasmania) **

* From 1 July 1985

** From 21 August 1985

Former Members

Senator Jack Evans (Western Australia) - (7 December 1983 - 30 June 1985)

Senator J.M. Hearn (Tasmania) - (7 December 1983 - 30 June 1985)

Senator the Hon. D.B. Scott (New South Wales) - (7 December 1983 - 30 June 1985)

Senator J.R. Siddons (Victoria) - (1 July 1985 - 21 August 1985)


P. Barsdel 1 The Senate Parliament House


Telephone: (062) 726906





Membership of the Committee iii

Contents v

List of Tables vii

Recommendations ix

Preface xi



Overseas 5

Australia 7

Public Opinion and Changing Attitudes towards Captive Cetacea 8

Overseas 8

Australia 11


Legal Requirements 15

The Application by Marine World Victoria 20


Public Awareness About Cetacea 25

Opposition to the Educational Role of Oceanaria 32 Education Programmes in Australian Oceanaria 35

Viewing Cetacea in the Wild 40

Audio-Visual Displays and Models 42


Research on Captive Cetacea 45

Other Research on Cetacea 46

Strandings 46

Commercially Harvested Cetacea 47

Benign Research 47

Wild Cetacea 48

Voluntary and Short-Term Captivity 50

Opposition to Research on Captive Cetacea 51

Arguments in Favour of Research on Captive Cetacea 53



Research Aims 54

Research Programmes in Australian Oceanaria 55

Assessment of Research Benefits 58


Behaviour 61

Mortality and Longevity 73

Breeding 81










1 Cetacea in Captivity in Australian Oceanaria

2 Capture Mortality for Cetacea for Australian Oceanaria

3 Australian Captive Cetacean Mortalities

4 Births in Australian Oceanaria








8.9 The Committee RECOMMENDS that no further facilities for keeping captive cetacea be permitted to be established in Australia and that no further permits be issued for the capture of cetacea in Australian Commonwealth or State waters. It

further RECOMMENDS that importation of cetacea from overseas be banned.

8.10 The Committee also RECOMMENDS that existing oceanaria be allowed to continue keeping cetacea for the time being but that the keeping of cetacea should eventually be phased out unless further research justifies their continuance.

8.12 The Committee RECOMMENDS that existing oceanaria be required to submit to more stringent assessments of educational and research functions by supplying detailed information similar to that required for applicants for scientific and educational permits in current Commonwealth guidelines and to be able to show that education and research constitute a significant component of the oceanarium's activities.

8.13 In keeping with the accepted policy of presenting

animals in a manner which improves public awareness and

understanding of cetacea, the Committee RECOMMENDS that display programmes in oceanaria be designed in such a way as to present only natural forms of behaviour and the facility to approximate more closely the cetacean's natural environment.

8.15 The Committee RECOMMENDS that national standards for the maintenance and care of captive cetacea be drawn up by the ANPWS in consultation with the State Government authorities, members of the captive cetacean industry and other people with

knowledge of cetacean welfare for use by authorities responsible for captive cetacea in each State. The Committee further

RECOMMENDS that national standards include standards for assessments of financial viability, natural display and educational and research components of captive cetacean display as well as covering all aspects of maintenance, handling and

care of captive cetacea. These standards would replace

guidelines for permit applications.

8.16 The Committee supports the proposal for a licensing system for owners and managers of oceanaria in addition to the existing provisions for licensing the oceanarium facility and RECOMMENDS that such a system be implemented.

8.18 The Committee RECOMMENDS that authorities responsible for captive cetacea in each State assess any oceanaria within that State against the established national standards and, where it is found that the captive cetacean facility is unable to

comply with these standards, a specified time be allocated for improvements, and if, after this period, the facility is still unable to comply with these standards, it be closed down.


8.20 The Committee RECOMMENDS that a national advisory body be established comprising representatives from Federal and State Government authorities, non-government organisations and oceanaria, which would advise the Federal and State Governments

on matters relating to cetacea, both captive and in the wild and to encourage and monitor research in this area.

8.21 The Committee, recognising the role played by some

oceanaria in the rescue and rehabilitation of sick and stranded animals, RECOMMENDS that oceanaria continue this work provided that it is directed towards returning the animals to their natural environment, where possible, and that the cetacea are not rescued with the ultimate intention of rehabilitating the ani-mal for the purposes of display and of circumventing the directive that no more wild cetacea be captured.

(Note: the Committee's conclusions and recommendations are contained in Chapter 8)



All the public evidence on dolphins in captivity in this inquiry was taken by Senators G. Georges, Jack Evans, J.M. Hearn and the Hon. D.B. Scott, before the retirement of three of the members from the Senate on 30 June 1985. These former

Committee members assisted the present Committee in the

preparation of this report.

I pay tribute to the three former members for their dedication and spirit of co-operation in this and other areas of the inquiry investigated by the Committee. I also thank the staff of the Committee for their work in support of the


G. Georges





1.1 The Senate appointed the Committee on 16 November 1983

and reappointed it on 22 February 1985 in the new Parliament to

inquire into and report upon:

1 the question of animal welfare in Australia, with particular reference to:

(a) interstate and overseas commerce in animals;

(b) wildlife protection and harvesting;

(c) animal experimentation;

(d) codes of practice of

for all species; and animal husbandry

(e) the use of animals in sport.1

1.2 After preliminary hearings in mid 1984 , the Committee

decided to concentrate initially on two areas of animal welfare

- the export of live sheep from Australia and kangaroo welfare

and management. The Committee reported on live sheep exports on

13 August 1985.

1.3 After representations were made to the Committee by

animal welfare organisations about the welfare of cetacea

(dolphins and whales) held in captivity and the proposed

establishment of an oceanarium at Springvale, Victoria, the

Committee held a public hearing in July 1984 to take evidence

from Project Jonah, the Australian Conservation Foundation and

the Australian Federation of Animal Societies. It held a further


hearing in September 1984 to take evidence from the management

of the proposed Victorian oceanarium. That meeting was curtailed

and the taking of further evidence was postponed until after the

Federal election.

1.4 In October 1984, the Minister for Home Affairs and the

Environment refused the application of Marine World, Victoria

for a permit to capture cetacea in Commonwealth waters for the

proposed Victorian oceanarium. He indicated, however, that the

matter might be reconsidered later in the light of any

recommendations on captive cetacea from this Select Committee.

The Victorian Government, noting that the question of captive

cetacea was being considered by the Committee, decided to defer

a decision on the keeping of cetacea in captivity in Victoria

until the Committee had reported its findings to the Senate.

1.5 The Committee decided, in view of the circumstances, to

give priority to the examination of captive cetacea. This meant

that consideration was given to one species of captive animals

out of the context of the general issue of holding animals in

captivity, such as in zoos, circuses or even other marine

animals in marine parks.

1.6 Most captive cetacea are kept in establishments in

which other marine animals are also kept. The Committee has used

the term 1 oceanaria1 to describe such establishments. This term

is synonymous with 1 marine parks', a term which the oceanarium

industry often uses to describe their establishments. The term

1 dolphinarium1 or 1 dolphinaria1 is used occasionally where an

establishment maintains only cetacea and the Committee wishes to

emphasise that fact. The Committee also uses the phrase 1 captive

cetacean facility' or a similar phrase where it wishes to

identify that part of an oceanarium in which cetacea are kept.


1.7 Representatives from Government departments, marine

mammal specialists and scientists gave evidence and made

submissions together with other interested individuals and

concerned groups from both sides of the debate. In addition, Dr

Paul Spong and Professor Kenneth Norris were brought to

Australia by animal welfare organisations and marine parks

respectively to represent their respective interests.

1.8 The Committee found that, while there were some marine

mammal experts in Australia, little scientific study had been

done on cetacea in captivity in Australia. It was necessary

therefore to look further for documented evidence in scientific

and other papers published overseas.

1.9 However, a heated and often acrimonious debate both in

Australia and overseas has developed over the findings and

interpretations of much of the evidence put forward. Each side

has denounced the findings of the other and frequently called

into question the qualifications and integrity of particular


1.10 This forum of debate has made objective study of the

material difficult and highlights the problems faced by the

Committee in trying to establish whether cetacea should be kept

in captivity.

1.11 There has also been much debate about the nature of

cetacea. Available evidence points to the probability that

cetacea have complex social behaviours and are highly

intelligent. In the absence of any strong evidence to the

contrary, the Committee has given cetacea the benefit when

assessing the impact of captivity on them.





2.1 While many historical accounts and tales refer, over

centuries, to relationships between humans and cetacea, the

keeping of captive cetacea for display or for research has a

relatively recent history.

2.2 The first attempts at keeping cetacea in captivity date

back at least to the 1860s. Dolphins were displayed at London's

Westminster Aquarium in 1860 and the Zoological Gardens in

Regents Park in 1865. White whales and Atlantic bottlenose

dolphins were displayed together at the Aqua rial Gardens in New

York in 1863 as part of Barnum's Museum. Six white whales had

been captured in the Saint Lawrence River and transported to New

York during 1861 and 1862 but only one survived. The white whale

at Aquarial Gardens may have been the first cetacean to be

trained in captivity.1

2.3 A harbour porpoise was kept at Brighton Aquarium,

England, in the 1860s and, in the 1870s, white whales were

shipped to England and displayed at Westminster Aquarium and at

shows in Manchester and Blackpool.2 In 1877 and 1878 , white

whales were captured and held in ponds at Labrador for shipment


2.4 Several early attempts at keeping captive cetacea were

also made in Europe. At the end of the nineteenth century,

bottlenose dolphins were kept at the Arcachon Biological Station near Bordeaux in France and at an aquarium in Copenhagen.2


White whales were captured in the St Lawrence River and

delivered to cities in Western Europe during the late nineteenth

and early twentieth centuries. In these cases, the whales were

shipped over long distances and the only precautions taken

against drying and dehydration were to pour buckets of water

periodically over the whales and to place moist seaweed on the

bottom of the shipping crate.4

2.5 During the same period, white whales were captured and

shipped to cities in eastern North America for display. In 1912

several bottlenose dolphins were transported for display at the

New York Aquarium from the porpoise fishery at Cape Hatteras in

North Carolina which had been taking bottlenose dolphins for oil

for over one hundred years. All died on the journey. On the

second attempt, six dolphins were kept moist under a tarpaulin

but four died before arrival and the other two soon after. In

1913, six dolphins were transported using special boxes

containing water and five reached the New York Aquarium.

However, none survived beyond 21 months.

2.6 These early, isolated attempts appear to have been

short-lived and ill-informed and the captive cetacea usually did

not survive long. However, by the 1940s, the notion that cetacea

could be trained for display, rather than just kept as exhibits,

led to the establishment of institutions specialising in keeping

cetacea. The first dolphinarium was opened in Florida in 1938.

Marine Studies Aquarium at Mar ineland in Florida was originally

established as an aquatic movie set and eventually became

involved in the display and training of captive cetacea for

public viewing. Staff pioneered techniques of cetacean capture,

transport, husbandry and medicine.^ The establishment of

Mar ineland of the Pacific, south of Los Angeles, in 1954,

heralded the rapid growth in popularity of keeping live cetacea

(mainly dolphins) . Other oceanaria were soon established in

several large towns in the U.S.A.


2.7 Dolphinaria began to be established in other countries

about a decade later. In New Zealand, three oceanaria have held

small cetacea in captivity for display since 1964.6 Port

Elizabeth Oceanarium, the first to be built in South Africa, has

maintained dolphins continuously since 1961.7 One of the first

dolphinaria in Europe was the Duisburg Dolphinarium in Western

Germany which was established in 1965. Other countries in Europe

such as Sweden, Holland, France, Italy and Romania soon followed

the trend. England began operating dolphinaria in 1964, the

first being established at Morecambe.

2.8 Experiments in keeping captive killer whales for

display were made in the 1960s. A killer whale was first used as

an exhibit in an oceanarium in the U.S.A. in 1961 when

Marineland of the Pacific netted an adult female in Newport

harbour, California, but it only lived one and a half days. In

1962, the same oceanarium attempted to capture a whale but it

died in the process. Vancouver Public Aquarium in British

Columbia created much interest when it kept a small whale alive

for three months. In 1965, the Seattle Marine Aquarium purchased

a large male killer whale which had been netted accidentally. It

lived in a floating pen for a year where it responded to

training and was a major attraction.8

2.9 Travelling shows with improvised pools also became

popular in the 1950s and 1960s. Dolphins and other small cetacea

were transported from place to place in trucks to perform tricks

at popular holiday resorts and large towns.9


2.10 Information on the keeping of captive cetacea in

Australia is fragmentary. It is thought that the first

dolphinarium was established in Australia as a result of the

accidental netting of a dolphin by fishermen in the Tweed River


in the early 1950s. It was placed overnight in the public

swimming pool. The ensuing publicity led the pool operator to

consider the commercial possibilities and the porpoise pool at

Tweed Heads was established. Other dolphinaria established

subsequently were not always as successful as this original

venture. Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney established an oceanarium

but drained it when many animals died from foreign objects being

thrown into the pool. Marineland in Surfers Paradise was a

successful oceanarium until, under pressure of competition from

Sea World, it was forced to close down. Currently there are

seven facilities housing captive cetacea in Australia.

2.11 The number and species of cetacea held in these

facilities are given in Table 1.

2.12 An application was made on 6 December 1983 for the

establishment of a further oceanarium for keeping captive

cetacea and other marine animals at Keysborough, Victoria.

Public Opinion and Changing Attitudes towards Captive Cetacea


2.13 Before the middle of this century, the intermittent and

usually short-term displays of captive cetacea paid scant

attention to the welfare of the animal. It was kept mainly as an

object for show and entertainment and to satisfy the curiosity

of people. Owners had little knowledge of the cetacean's

biological needs for such things as space, social interaction

and appropriate diet. There was little information on the

injuries, illnesses and diseases suffered by cetacea and their


2.14 Concern about cetacean welfare started to develop in

the 1960s as the public realised that numbers of species of

large whales had declined to the extent that some were


threatened with extinction by commercial whaling. A worldwide

campaign against whaling was mounted by conservationists who

expressed concern about depletion of populations, the

possibility of extinction of certain species, the cruelty of

killing methods, the possibility that some cetacea might be very

intelligent and the ethical considerations of killing whales for

commercial purposes.

2.15 At the same time the public had been finding out more

about small cetacea through seeing them in oceanaria, which were

becoming increasingly numerous in the 1960s. Scientific studies

of small captive cetacea were probably first carried out on the

behaviour and physiology of dolphins by the United States Navy

in San Diego. These finding were augmented by research on

cetacea in oceanaria which contributed to knowledge about

behaviour, nutritional requirements, physiology, communication

and reproduction.

2.16 Other developments which also contributed to increased

knowledge of and concern with small cetacea included the

proliferation of high quality nature films documenting the life

of wild cetacea and observations of wild cetacea by whale

watching enthusiasts. As well, by the mid 1970s, the resurgance

of the humane movement and the publication of several

philosophical treatises on the limits of moral concern,

individual rights, including the rights of other species, were

focussing attention on the issue of animal welfare and, in

particular, on the experience of suffering in animals.

2.17 In the 1970s, legislation was passed in many countries

regulating the capture of cetacea and their care in oceanaria or

other facilities, usually through the issue of a permit for

display, education or scientific study. In the U.S.A., for

instance, the Marine Mammal Protection Act, passed in 1972,

requires permits to be issued to United States facilities

maintaining marine mammals in captivity and export permits for


animals being transported to overseas facilities. The United

States Department of Agriculture issues regulations for the

humane care, treatment and transportation of marine mammals,

which are incorporated into the permit system, and also imposes

strict conditions on overseas facilities importing marine

mammals from the U.S.A.

2.18 While legislation reflected an increasing concern with

the welfare of cetacea in captivity, attitudes towards the

display of animals in captivity had also been changing.

Criticism of oceanaria began as an extension of the whale

campaign and because some scientific research had indicated that

cetacea had high intelligence and sophisticated behaviour

patterns. Oceanaria were criticised for painful and stressful

capture techniques, the high mortality rate of captive cetacea

and a captive environment which was not able to provide for the

cetacean's social or biological needs. The critics argued that,

not only were oceanaria detrimental to the cetacean's welfare,

but that the behaviour displayed by these captive animals was so

different from their natural behaviour that there was now little

scientific or educational justification for keeping them

captive. They also questioned the ethics of capturing such an

intelligent species.10

2.19 Whereas animals had previously been considered as mere

curiosities for the purpose of display, the effect of the

reappraisal of moral concern for animals was that institutions

started to present them as integrated communities in natural

settings which were also designed to educate and inform. Against

pressure to abandon captive facilities in favour of experiencing

animals in their natural state or through the media, zoos and

oceanaria emphasised their contribution to scientific knowledge

of the natural world and preservation of various species,

together with their promotion of greater understanding of and

responsibility towards animals.


2.20 As well as emphasising their scientific and educational

contribution, proponents of oceanaria stated, however, that poor

conditions and high mortalities in the past were the result of

lack of information and knowledge about cetacea. In the last

four or five years, the managements of oceanaria claim to have

come together to: exchange information, draw up standards of

care and treatment, change capture methods, improve conditions

and develop captive breeding programmes to avoid depleting

cetacean stocks.11

2.21 The changing attitude towards cetacea is reflected in

the recent action taken by some governments to provide greater

protection for these animals. The European Parliament passed

legislation in 1984 banning the importation of orcas for

display. The United States is presently considering a bill to

prohibit the capture and display of orcas. Argentina has banned

the use of dolphins for captive display. In the United Kingdom

the Department of the Environment has not granted permits to

import dolphins or killer whales since 1983. An adviser has

recently been appointed to consider whether the educational,

research and breeding benefits of dolphinaria and similar

establishments in the United Kingdom are of sufficient value to

justify the import and display of live cetacea.12


2.22 In the 1970s in a climate of growing awareness of the

environment and of the need to conserve previously exploited

species, concern was expressed in Australia, as in other

countries, about the effects of commercial whaling. As a result

of the findings of a Government inquiry into whales and whaling,

in 1978, chaired by Sir Sydney Frost, the Federal Government

banned commercial whaling in Australian waters.


2.23 In 1980 the Federal Parliament enacted the Whale

Protection Act, which was based on the recommendations of the

Frost Report. Although the Report dealt with the commercial

harvesting of cetacea, the legislation protects all cetacea in

Commonwealth waters. The Act does allow, however, for permits to

be issued by the appropriate Federal Minister for the capture of

cetacea for display, educational or research purposes. This

legislation complements State legislation covering the capture,

care and treatment of cetacea in captivity.

2.24 The campaign to end whaling increased public awareness

about the need to protect cetacea. Improved legislative

provisions for the protection of cetacea were only one result.

In 1981, volunteers rescued about 70 stranded whales on

Victorian and Tasmanian coastlines and returned them to the sea.

Since then volunteers have formed groups which may be called on

at any time to assist stranded whales. A national whale

stranding contingency plan has been established and some State

plans drafted.

2.25 Recently there has been increased interest in observing

and interacting with cetacea in their natural environment.

Numbers of visitors to Monkey Mia, in Western Australia, to see

the dolphins, have grown considerably. Dolphins are common along

the East Victorian coastline and are regularly observed in Port

Phillip Bay. Four dolphins were trapped in Lake Tyers, near

Lakes Entrance for nearly four years. Whales can be observed in

bays and caves on the coast, mainly during the migratory months.

At Lady Bay at Warrnambool in Victoria, visitors come to see the

Southern Right Whales calve.

2.26 After the cessation of whaling, groups which had

figured prominently in the campaign, such as Greenpeace and

Project Jonah (both established in Australia in 1975), began to

focus their attention on captive cetacea.





Atlantis Marine Park Yanchep Sun City W.A. (Est. 1981)

Tursioos truncatus 7

King Neptune's Park Port Macquarie N.S.W. (Est. 1973)

Tursioos truncatus 3

Marineland of South Australia, Adelaide S .A. (Est. 1969)

Tursioos truncatus 5

Pet Porpoise Pool Coffs Harbour N.S.W. (Est. 1970)

Tursioos truncatus 5

Sea World Tursioos truncatus 20

Surfers Paradise Sousa chinensis 1

Queensland (Est. 1971) Pseudorca crassidens 2

African Lion Safari Warragamba N.S.W. (Est. 1973)

Tursioos truncatus 3

Hamilton Island Tursioos truncatus 3

(Est. 1984)





Legal Requirements

3.1 The capture and keeping of captive cetacea in Australia

are regulated both through Commonwealth and State legislation.

3.2 The Whale Protection Act 1980, framed in accordance

with the findings and recommendations of the Frost Report is

designed to afford protection to all cetacea. The legislation

has the effect of giving the Commonwealth indirect control over

captive cetacean facilities, which are regulated by State

legislation, by requiring a permit for the taking of cetacea in

any Australian sea waters other than the coastal waters of a

State or Territory. The Act prohibits killing, injuring, taking

or interfering with whales unless specific conditions apply. The

term 'whales' is defined as any member of the sub-order

Mvsticeti or Odontoceti of the order Cetacea and thus the Act

includes dolphins. A person with a permit may, under section

11(1) (a) of the Act, ' take whales for live display or kill or

take whales for scientific or educational purposes'. Application

for a permit to take cetacea from Commonwealth waters must be

made pursuant to section 18 of the Act which requires that the

particulars of the application be published and that interested

persons be invited to make written comments on the application

to the Minister responsible. Ownership of a cetacean taken in

Commonwealth waters is vested in the Commonwealth under section

36 of the Act and not in the person or organisation which

captures or keeps it. No permit has yet been issued under this



3.3 The granting of a permit is contingent upon meeting set

standards in guidelines for the capture and care of cetacea.

Draft 1 Guidelines for the Maintenance, Handling and Care of Live

Cetaceans', for applicants under the Whale Protection Act were

drawn up by Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service

(ANPWS) in October 1984. These established minimum conditions

for the maintenance of cetacea in captivity. They are:

'... based on the best available information on the biological requirements of captive cetaceans. It is recognised that there are significant intra- and inter-specific differences in the biological and

behavioural characteristics of cetaceans in their natural habitats and in their

requirements in captivity which have to be taken into account ... In all cases, the

goal is the welfare of the individual

captive cetacean.11

3.4 The guidelines cover such areas as space requirements

(including pool size and water volume), construction materials,

temperature, lighting, noise, water quality, food and feeding,

special facilities, veterinary care, training, handling,

inspections and maintenance of records.

3.5 The draft 'Guidelines for Techniques of Live Capture

and Transport of Cetaceans', drawn up at the same time by ANPWS,

deal with methods of capture which '... must be designed to

minimise physical harm, discomfort and shock'.2 Sections deal

with transportation, containers, carriage, care and food

requirements in transit, duration of trip and terminal handling


3.6 The States have jurisdiction over cetacea caught within

the three mile territorial sea limit. Some complement the

cetacean capture provisions of the Whale Protection Act by

legislating in respect of the display and education facilities


for captive cetacea. In Victoria, the Wildlife Act 1975 as

amended by the Wildlife (Protection of whales) Act 1981

provides, under section 78(1)(a), that a permit may be issued

authorising the possession of cetacea for specific purposes

connected with live display or scientific or educational

purposes. Publication of the particulars of the application,

together with an invitation for interested people to lodge

written comments, is provided for under section 82 of the Act.

In New South Wales, cetacea are protected by the National Parks

and_Wildlife Act 1974 which requires that a licence be issued

under section 121. South Australia and Queensland protect

cetacea under the general provisions of their respective

Fisheries Acts. Tasmania is currently considering new

legislation to be called The Whale Protection Act. In Western

Australia, application must be made under the provisions of its

Wildlife Conservation Act.

3.7 Some States require applicants to satisfy criteria

before an oceanarium may be established and cetacea captured.

Atlantis Marine Park, which was established in 1981, was granted

a permit by the Director of Fisheries and Wildlife under the

Western Australian Wildlife Conservation Act, and is subject to

the conditions set out in its 1 License Conditions and Guidelines

relating to the Care and Maintenance of Marine Mammals'.

Atlantis was not subject to the provisions of the Whale

Protection Act because it applied for a permit to capture its

cetacea in Western Australian waters.

3.8 In 1983 , an application for a permit to establish and

operate an oceanarium in Victoria resulted in the publication of

'Guidelines for the Capture, Transport and Care of Cetaceans

19841, compiled by the Fisheries and Wildlife Service of the

Department of Conservation, Forests and Lands. At the same time

ANPWS drafted its guidelines for applications under the

Commonwealth Whale Protection Act. A draft code of conduct for


marine mammals, for applications made under N.S.W. legislation,

governing 1 The Physical Conditions for the Acquisition,

Transportation, Maintenance in Captivity and Disposal of Smaller

Whales, Dolphins, Seals, Sea Lions and Fur Seals' was also drawn


3.9 The draft guidelines were based on the specifications

for the 'Humane Handling, Care, Treatment and Transportation of

Marine Mammals' under the United States Marine Mammal Protection

Act. These were regarded as the most progressive and up-to-date

guidelines available. However Fuller contended that:

'In recent years it has become increasingly obvious that regulations governing the dimensions of dolphin tanks, in force at the time establishments such as Atlantis Marine Park were proposed, were woefully

inadequate. Controlling bodies in some countries are now insisting on very large tanks for the housing of dolphins.'3

ANPWS thought that:

'... it would be fair to say that now there

is some contention over even the standards that have been recommended within the U.S. at the moment.'4

Oceanarium proprietors have also commented on deficiencies in

existing guidelines and suggested improvements. It has been

noted that guidelines would continually become outdated as new

information about cetacea was discovered and that they would

therefore always need periodic revision.

3.10 The other Australian oceanaria were established before

the Whale Protection Act was passed and have not had to conform

to its guidelines for minimum standards for the welfare of

cetacea. However, if any of these wishes to capture more cetacea

for its facility, it may have to apply under either State or

Commonwealth legislation and a permit could be refused if the


facility or standard of care was not considered to be adequate.

Recently, in New Zealand, Napier Marineland, with a high record

of cetacean mortalities, was granted a permit to capture more

cetacea only after it had undertaken significant improvements in

the facility.

3.11 Restrictions and controls under State legislation vary

considerably. While Victoria, New South Wales and Western

Australia have established comprehensive guidelines, South

Australia and Queensland have none.

3.12 Problems exist with the enforcement of the legislation.

Although there is provision for the inspection of facilities it

is questionable whether they can be adequately monitored because

of time and staffing constraints. It is also possible that

capture jurisdiction cannot be properly policed. Those wishing

to circumvent Commonwealth legislation could capture cetacea in

Commonwealth waters but maintain that they had caught them within State limits.5

3.13 The RSPCA has expressed concern that a captive cetacean

facility, which satisfied all criteria specified in guidelines,

may be viable initially but may, in the longer term, lose

profitability. As a result, cetacean welfare may suffer.6 Abel

has proposed that oceanarium proprietors or ^managers be licensed

rather than, or, as well as, the facility itself. It would then

be necessary for any prospective owner or manager to undergo a

stringent assessment before obtaining a licence to run an


3.14 As well as regulating the capture and keeping of

cetacea through Commonwealth and State legislation, Australia,

as a signatory to certain international instruments, has an

obligation to comply with their conditions regarding captive



3.15 Australia is one of the original signatories to the

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild

Fauna and Flora (CITES) which was negotiated by more than 70

countries in 1973. A regulation of the European Council, which

came into force at the beginning of 1984, added dolphins and

killer whales to Appendix I of the Convention, which requires

ratifying nations not to trade these cetacea for primarily

commercial purposes. Trade in cetacea, which are listed in

Appendix II of the Convention, is regulated through a permit


3.16 Initially, Australia gave effect to the provisions of

CITES through a variety of legislative actions. In 1982 these

were consolidated under the Wildlife Protection (Regulation of

Exports and Imports) Act 1982. Schedules 1-3 list wildlife to

which strict export and import controls apply. Schedule 3

contains all species of the order Cetacea.

3.17 In 1982 , Australia signed, but has not yet ratified,

the Law of the Sea Convention and the final Act of the Law of

the Sea Conference. Australia is also a signatory to the

International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling 1946,

which established the International Whaling Commission (IWC).

The Application by Marine World Victoria

3.18 On 19 December 1983 , the City of Springvale Council

granted a permit which approved, in terms of landuse, the

establishment of an oceanarium.

3.19 The applicant was Marine World Victoria, incorporated

on 11 October 1983 which would be trading as Sequana Marine

Garden, Keysborough, Victoria. The cost of the project was

determined to be $18 million. It was planned that the oceanarium

would occupy 10 hectares of land with 18.9 hectares for parking,

landscaping and other ancillary services.


3.20 In August 1984, application was made under the

Victorian Wildlife Act 1975, as amended by the Wildlife

(Protection of Whales) Act 1981, to the Director of the

Fisheries and Wildlife Service for a permit to enable the

transportation and keeping, for live display and educational purposes, of the cetacea.

3.21 Application was also made in August 1984 under the

Commonwealth Whale Protection Act 1980, to the Minister for Home

Affairs and the Environment, for a permit to enable the

collection, for live display and educational purposes, of 11

(seven female and four male) sub-adult bottlenose dolphins

(Tursiops truncatus) and two (one female and one male) sub-adult

false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens) .

3.22 The cetacea were to be collected at periods between

September 1985 and September 1986 by the Breakaway Hoop Net

method in Commonwealth waters in Bass Strait.

3.23 The Commonwealth application was made in accordance

with the 'Guidelines for the Preparation of Applications for

Permits for Live Display, Scientific or Educational Purposes',

drawn up by ANPWS in October 1982. The applicant was required to

furnish detailed information on, amongst other things,

transport, display facilities, water supply, diet, sanitation

practices, qualifications and experience of staff, veterinary

certification, display practices, number of displays daily,

previous experience and cetacean mortalities. The guidelines

stated that the Minister would consider, in relation to the

permit application, the information provided by the applicant,

whether the proposal was consistent with the objects and

provisions of the Act, whether substantial public benefit would

be gained and the effect of the proposal on cetacea and the

marine ecosystem, the applicants qualifications, comments from

other persons, and other factors relevant to the preservation,

conservation and protection of cetacea.


3.24 In accordance with Commonwealth and Victorian

legislation, public notices were issued inviting public comment

on the application. The ANPWS received 298 submissions and the

Victorian Government received 317. About three-quarters of the

submissions, 223 to the Commonwealth and 23 6 to Victoria,

expressed opposition to the establishment of the oceanarium.

3.25 The most comprehensive representation of this

opposition has been made by three organisations: Project Jonah,

Greenpeace and the Australian Conservation Foundation. Project

Jonah communicated its opposition to the Springvale Municipal

Council on 8 March 1984 . The Council in reply found that:

1(i) to keep, train and display dolphins in a well-run oceanarium is an acceptable way of keeping such animals;

(ii) oceanaria make a substantial

contribution to community

understanding of sea life and respect for the animals concerned as well as providing entertainment and employment for people; and

(iii) the operators of oceanaria commonly provide substantial support for

conservation of marine wild-life, especially cetaceans, because of the knowledge and facilities which they establish in an area.17

Accordingly it issued the necessary town planning permits.

3.26 However, the application for a permit to collect the

cetacea from Commonwealth waters was refused by the Minister for

Home Affairs and the Environment on 24 October 1984 'due to the

extent and nature of public opposition to the proposal1. The

Minister indicated that the application might be reconsidered at

a later date in the light of any recommendations on captive


display of cetacea from the Senate Select Committee on Animal

Welfare.8 The Victorian Government, which was also considering

the application, decided to make no decision on the proposed

oceanarium until the Senate Committee reported.

3.27 In refusing the application the Minister for Home

Affairs and the Environment gave no consideration to the

information required by the Guidelines for Preparation of

Applications regarding adequacy of the facilities or to the

provision for the welfare of the cetacea. Marine World,

Victoria, was informed that the decision to refuse the

application was based solely on the extent and nature of public

opposition. It should be noted that Marine World, Victoria, did

comply with all Victorian legislation and guidelines regarding

capture, transport, handling, maintenance and display of live

cetacea and that the Minister was informed by ANPWS that 1 the

proposed methods of transport and capture of the cetaceans,

appear to be in accordance with accepted practice for these

activities' .9

3.28 The Committee considers that is very difficult to gauge

the extent of public opposition to an issue such as the keeping

of cetacea in captivity. While Friends of Marine World and

Project Jonah in Victoria and Sea World in Queensland have all

collected thousands of signatures for petitions either for or

against captive cetacea, the Committee is of the opinion that

they cannot be used a reliable indicator of public opinion.

3.29 Project Jonah told the Committee that about

three-quarters of the submissions received by the Victorian

Government and ANPWS were opposed to the proposed oceanarium at

Keysborough in Victoria. This, too, cannot be regarded as an

indicator of general public opinion. Many of these submissions

were written either by members of Project Jonah or other animal

welfare organisations campaigning against the oceanarium or by


people connected with these organisations. In addition,

advertisements calling for comments on proposals more often

attract opponents rather than supporters of those proposals.




Public Awareness about Cetacea

4.1 Proprietors of oceanaria claim that they play a

significant role in developing awareness of cetacean welfare. Mr

R. Abel, who has applied for a permit to establish an oceanarium

in Victoria, has stated that oceanaria are needed:

'... to continually expose the public to the animals to develop concern and awareness of their welfare and environment [and] to

develop our knowledge and understanding of the animals and their needs to better protect them in the wild.11

4.2 It is commonly accepted that oceanaria have made a

significant contribution to the current high level of awareness

and concern about cetacea.

4.3 Oceanaria seem to have been the first to provide the

opportunity for large numbers of people to see cetacea. The

initial realisation that people were fascinated by cetacea

frequently seems to have been accidental. Once realised,

however, specialised facilities were developed to cater for this

interest. In Japan, for instance, dolphins had first been

exhibited in 1930. In 1953, however, a number of dolphins were

captured in a small natural bay of roughly one hectare in Mito

for studies on age. The dolphins, mainly Stenella coeruleoalba,

attracted a great many interested spectators. It is claimed that

many people, who were not able to distinguish dolphins from fish

when the Mito dolphins were first captured, were later able to


recognise different species of dolphins and porpoises and their

behaviour. The number of oceanaria increased from two in 1960 to

five in 1965 , 13 in 1970 , 16 in 1976 and 27 in 1982.2

4.4 In Australia in the early 1950s, a dolphin was caught

in a fishing net at the mouth of the Tweed River and was placed,

as a joke, in the local public swimming pool. The pool operator

noticed that many people were coming to the pool, not to swim

but to see the dolphin. He started to charge sixpence a look.

Realising the potential of displaying dolphins, he established

the Tweed Heads Porpoise Pool.2

4.5 It appears that public fascination with killer whales

was also discovered by accident. In 1961, a large, old, female

killer whale entered Newport Harbour, California and was taken

to the newly established Marineland of the Pacific at Palos

Verdes where the staff tried vainly to keep it alive. In 1964, a

female killer whale, harpooned off Vancouver Island, was

transported to Vancouver Aquarium. It lived there for three

months in a temporary enclosure in the harbour, where it

displayed many appealing characteristics and received much

publicity. A large, male killer whale, which was caught in a

salmon net, was towed in a floating pen 700 kilometres to

Seattle Marine Aquarium. It lived in the pen for one year and

responded well to training.4 These animals generated so much

public interest that catching of killer whales started in

earnest for the ready market provided by oceanaria. Little was

known about killer whales before these events. It is claimed

that previously it had not been known that whales could live out

of water and 1 the killer about which stories were told of

attacking men on iceflows, etc., etc. was shown to have gentle

qualities which caused many people to reflect deeply about this

beautiful creature'.5


4.6 Before the mid-1960s it is probable that many people

would only have become aware of cetacea by seeing then in

oceanaria, which were becoming more numerous and attracting

larger audiences. After that time, other developments began to

contribute to a wider interest in and concern about cetacea. In

the late 1960s songs of the humpback whale were taped and

circulated around Washington D.C. An analysis of the songs was

published in Science in 1971 and a record released in 1972. It

was claimed that after hearing these songs, Christine Stevens,

President of the Animal Welfare Institute in the U.S.A. was

moved to, ' almost singlehandedly' , push a resolution for a ten

year moratorium on the killing of whales through the United

States Senate in 1971.6

4.7 In 1966 Jacques Yves Cousteau produced his first film

of underwater life on American CBS television. From 1968 some of

his films in the television series entitled 1 The undersea world

of Jacques Cousteau', documented the life of cetacea in the

wild. This series was widely acclaimed and very popular.

Cousteau commented:

1 Television for me is the greatest reward there is. Making films and writing books is good but not as thrilling. With television you know that on one evening, 35 to 40

million people are going to see dolphins.17

Constant improvements in underwater filming technology and the

immediate popularity of wildlife underwater exploratory series

led to a proliferation of high-quality nature films documenting

much of what is currently known about cetacea.

4.8 In 1914, the Director of the New York Aquarium was the

first person to publish extensive observations on captive

cetacea, which included descriptions of swimming, feeding and

play behaviours, aerial displays, social behaviour and comments


on their visual acuity. Detailed behavioural descriptions of the

cetacea at Marineland, Florida, were published by McBride and

Webb in the 1940s .8

4.9 Scientific study of cetacea had been proceeding since

the middle of the nineteenth century. Initially, so little was

known about the cetacea taken captive that oceanaria could not

even identify the different species. Mr R. Abel asserted that

1 when the Florida Marine Park opened they sent a team to

California, first of all to find out whether there were such

things as dolphins in the Pacific'.9 However, research on

cetacea increased from the 1950s as the numbers of captive

cetacea increased. These findings were published in both

scientific and popular journals. In the last two decades the

United States Navy Department has conducted extensive studies of

marine mammals in naval centres at Port Mugu and San Diego

(California) and Kaneohe and Oahu (Hawaii) providing much

information on physiology, anatomy and diseases of cetacea.

Early knowledge of anatomy, distribution, migration, and feeding

habits had been obtained from studies of commercially harvested


4.10 Knowledge of behaviour, physiology, nutritional

requirements and diseases advanced considerably in oceanaria in

the 1960s, especially where they employed veterinarians. A

significant proportion of the current information on marine

mammals is a result of interaction between these people and

various government and university laboratories.10

4.11 Innovations in photographic, electronic and

audio-visual technology have recently facilitated the

observation of wild cetacea over extended periods. Currently,

'field studies emphasising radio tracking, static tagging and

observations of naturally marked animals have provided insights

into diving behaviour, movement patterns, population structure

and social behaviour1 of wild cetacea.I1


4.12 Significant numbers of people were now learning about

cetacea through oceanaria, audio-visual media and published

studies on cetacea. At the same time, people realised that

certain species of whales were threatened with extinction

through commercial whaling. Oceanaria had made a significant

contribution to a changed perception about cetacea. Orcas had

often been considered fierce and dangerous and dolphins were, in

some countries, seen as a threat to commercial fishing. In

oceanaria the public found that cetacea were gentle, intelligent

and sociable animals. When the campaign to save the whale began

in earnest, numbers of the public were already sensitised and

sympathetic to cetacea.

4.13. Saving the whale was the first step in a wider campaign

to conserve and protect the environment. At the same time a new

ethic was emerging which was aimed at shifting the perspective

on the issue of human-animal relations to recognise the moral

claims of other species.

4.14 The campaign to save the whale was very successful in

raising public awareness about cetacea. In the U.S.A. it was

claimed that:

' a survey of environmental organisations indicates that over $25 million was given to whale protection efforts in 1981 in the form of contributions and merchandise purchases

from which the profits accrue to

environmental organisations. Many

contributors, however, are unlikely to ever see a whale alive, but their contributions nonetheless attest to the value they bestow upon knowing that whales will continue to exist.'12


The Endangered Species Conservation Act, which included species

of whales, was passed in 1969 and the Marine Mammal Protection

Act in 1972. In the same year, the United Nations Stockholm

Conference called for a ten year moratorium on whaling. The

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild

Fauna and Flora was negotiated by more than 70 countries in

1973 .

4.15 In Australia, the passing of the Whale Protection Act.

1980 was influenced by the pressure of public opinion on the

issue. At the height of the campaign, a poll conducted by

Project Jonah in 1977 indicated that 69 per cent of Australian

voters thought that Australia should give up the killing of

whales immediately. In the report of the Inquiry into Whales and

Whaling it is stated that:

1 It is relevant to note the high degree of

interest shown in the question whether whales should be killed or not. This may have been due to the widespread public interest in the whole question of Australian whaling, and whaling generally, following the meeting of the International Whaling Commission in Canberra in June 1977.113

4.16 This widespread public interest in the protection and

conservation of cetacea may have been partly caused and

contributed to by the sympathy aroused in people having seen

cetacea in oceanaria. However, evidence indicates that few

oceanaria contributed directly to the conservation of whales

either through active participation in the campaign to stop

whaling or in informing the public visiting their facilities

about the demise of certain species of whales through commercial

whaling. Paul Watson of the Fund for Animals noted that, at Sea

World in the U.S.A., a complex of oceanaria with an annual

attendance of seven million people:


there is very little mention of the

political reality of whaling. When I asked a staff member the reason for this I was told that it was Sea World's policy to not be

involved in the politics of whales. 'I4

4.17 However, in Australia, Hec Goodall, Proprietor of Pet

Porpoise Pool in Coffs Harbour campaigned actively for the

cessation of commercial whaling by writing articles, speaking at

meetings, working in association with Project Jonah, making

petitions available at his oceanarium and giving evidence to the

Inquiry on Whales and Whaling held by Sir Sydney Frost.

4.18 In a national survey, 75 per cent of people in Victoria

thought that Australia should give up whaling immediately - the

second highest State percentage - while 41 per cent were 1 very

interested' in the debate - equal highest State percentage.

Project Jonah, Victoria, has pointed out that this high degree

of awareness occurred in a State which did not have an

oceanariumlS, indicating that, at least for Victoria, oceanaria

do not contribute to public awareness on the issue of cetacean

conservation. It also pointed out that a high level of public

response to and success with rescuing stranded whales has

occurred in Victorian-6 and Tasmania where no oceanarium exists.

4.19 However, oceanaria's past contribution to public

awareness about cetacea is generally acknowledged even among

many of their strongest opponents. Paul Spong, for instance, has

stated that:

' Oceanaria have made a huge contribution to our cause. And we must give them credit for it. I'm serious. Without the public display of cetaceans we would have almost no idea of what they are. Maybe we might have gleaned

something from Greek history, but, by and large, without the oceanaria, the mass

awareness of cetaceans that exists today and the resulting mass concern for their fate would not be a reality. So, please let us

acknowledge this debt.'47


Opposition to the Educational Role of Oceanaria

4.20 Many of those who acknowledge the past contribution of

oceanaria now oppose keeping cetacea captive for educational

purposes. They consider that display of cetacea in a captive

setting reinforces the notion that humans are entitled to

dominate and exploit animals. Project Jonah, Victoria,

criticised what it saw as:

'... the tacit assumption implicit in

dolphinarium displays that the capture and exploitation of a weaker animal (e. g.

dolphins) by a stronger animal (e.g. man) is perfectly legitimate.118

They consider that:

1 An important development in twentieth

century philosophy has been the notion that might is not of itself right, that the

presence of the power to perform an action does not legitimise the action. The rights of the weak (be they children, the elderly, the handicapped or animals) are increasingly being recognised, and to continue to

legitimise animal exploitation to our

children in the form of public performances of captive dolphins is to miss the

opportunity to take a giant philosophical stride forwards.119

4.21 Australian oceanarium displays and publicity usually

emphasise the subordinate relationship of cetacea to trainer in

captivity and concentrate on the readiness of cetacea for and

susceptibility to training rather than on their own natural

attributes. Thus the publicity booklet for Sea World, Queensland

states that:

1 One important factor about Sea World aside from seeing people enjoy themselves, is

encouraging children to become involved, observe and appreciate the wonderful world of


the Sea. Since 1974 Sea World has offered

Brisbane and near surrounding schools, the opportunity of organised education programmes within the park. Students are treated to a dolphin training session and from the

accompanying commentary, students learn about marine mammals and training techniques.120

4.22 Publicity for Atlantis Marine Park in Western

Australia, produced in newspapers and on television and radio,

advertises: 'Kids, how would you like to teach a dolphin to

jump, to leap and to somersault? Come to Atlantis during the

August school holidays and get your chance to be a dolphin

trainer'. A publicity handout from Atlantis shows three people

standing on the backs of four dolphins. An issue of Atlantis

Dolphin Log, a quarterly newsletter for children published by

Atlantis, devoted over half of its space to aspects of dolphin

training. Less than one column was given to providing

information about the natural history of cetacea.

4.23 Many critics, who oppose the exploitation of cetacea in

oceanaria for profit, advocate the extension of facilities for

viewing cetacea in the wild. However, this also has been seen as

a form of exploitation. Dale Jamieson and Tom Regan have stated:

1 similarly unacceptable, though for different reason is the fledgling whale watching

industry. Whales do not exist as visual

commodities in an aquatic free market, and the business of taking eager sightseers into their waters, though non-consumptive, is

exploitative nonetheless, morally analogous to making a business of conducting tours of human beings who either cannot or do not give their consent to be looked at.121

4.24 Whale watching in the wild has been developed into a

lucrative industry. In California in 1981 it accounted for

255 730 passengers and gross revenues exceeding US$2 167 000. In

New England in the same period 73 250 thousand passengers


generated a gross revenue of over US$1 million22 At the

International Marine Mammal Conference held in Bergen, Norway in

1976 , it was estimated that 1 the dollar importance of whale

watching in the wild and in captivity, of television shows and

movies about whales, of whale books, of the recorded music of

whales, and of art works inspired by whale shapes and rhythms,

amounts to 200 million dollars a year'.22

4.25 Against critics who consider that the role of

oceanaria, in raising public awareness, has been superseded by

the impact of the conservation movement, it has been asserted

that an active educational component is offered in oceanaria

which teaches viewers about cetacean welfare and preservation.

It has been stated that there has been a 15-fold increase in the

education staffs of zoos and aquariums in the United States

since 1976 with between five and ten per cent of annual

operating budgets allocated specifically for educational

programmes^ a survey of 112 institutions in the U.S.A. and

Canada in 1983 indicated that:

'in addition to their basic display programs, [most] supported either specific education departments and staff or co-operated in

in-house and out-reach classes in conjunction with local schools and universities. Many were associated with internship and special education programs and published a regular

bulletin or newsletter containing natural history information.125

4.26 No qualitative assessment of the aim or content of

these educational programmes was undertaken by the survey. Paul

Watson of Fund for Animals in the U.S.A. stated:

'We are not happy with the way the orcas are presented at Sea World, although it is true that 7 million people a year are able to

experience the whales at Sea World. We do not believe that they are exposed to Orcinus orca in a way that will properly convey the

natural behaviour of this particular species. Whereas the Vancouver Public Aquarium places emphasis on natural behaviour, Sea World is


more inclined to provide entertainment than education. Sea World advertisements stress the entertainment aspect of a visit to Sea World. Not much is said about the educational


4.27 In Australia a summary of the educational programmes

offered by each oceanarium is given below.

Education Programmes in Australian Oceanaria

African Lion Safari. Warraaamba. N.S.W.

4.28 No educational programme is offered. Ms Fiona Smith

worked as an animal trainer at Warragamba and was hired in 1983

to develop an educational centre there. She has stated:

'Warragamba is purely an entertainment

facility. There is no educational component offered, even though the vet and various

trainers have urged management since the late 70s to develop this side of the presentation. I was asked by the vet if I would be

interested in developing an Educational Centre and was hired by Mr De Chellis in

December 1983 on that basis. In six months, one meeting was held between Mr S. Bullen, Mr P. De Chellis and myself to discuss that

matter and the proposed classroom was emptied of pinball machines, which have since been returned.12^

The proprietor of Warragamba stated:

'... there is not as such, an educational

programme, apart from looking at the animals. We are fixing up a small theatre at the

moment where we are going to show films and slides, and it will be controlled by tape

recorder . .. 128


Final year students at the Faculty of Veterinary Science,

University of Sydney, have accompanied Dr Hyne for routine

checks of the animals and are involved in a preventative

medicine programme using Warragamba's captive marine mammals. A

Wildlife Diploma (a post-graduate qualification of the Faculty)

requires access to animals in captivity.

Atlantis Marine Park. Yanchep Sun City. W.A.

4.29 The management states that aspects of the educational

programme include structural tours for school groups to enjoy a

1 behind the scenes' experience of the marine mammal and aquarium

facilities. At training and feeding activities for different

species, a member of the marine animal staff shares information

on habitat, husbandry, diet and general behaviour of each

species. Educational tapes run continually at key locations and

these complement information signs which describe the history

and distribution of each species. Work experience programmes in

the aquarium or with marine mammals have been conducted with

over 40 secondary school students. Twenty veterinary students

from Murdoch University have undertaken projects or gained

professional experience. Senior staff of Atlantis lecture on

marine mammal biology at tertiary institutions and professional

associations. Atlantis has acted as host to the Wildlife and

Fauna Group of the XXII World Veterinary Congress held in Perth

in 1983 and staff have participated in national radio and

television productions dealing with marine animals.29

Marineland of South Australia. Adelaide. South Australia

4.30 No educational programme is offered. The General

Manager of the oceanarium stated that Marineland was primarily

an entertainment venue although it has always been felt by the

management that there was a place for an educational programme

as 20 per cent of attendances were by structured school



King Neptune's Park. Port Macquarie, New South Wales

4.31 The proprietor claimed that, as this oceanarium was

situated at the end of the Oxley Highway, it attracted visitors

from western New South Wales, many of whom had never seen the

ocean. This was also their first contact with live dolphins.

Trainers gave information on the species during performances.

Students from science classes in schools from within the area

experienced an 1 eye to eye1 definition and description of the

cetacea. Project sheets were distributed to schools.31

Pet Porpoise Pool. Coffs Harbour. New South Wales

4.32 The oceanarium provides a programme on dolphins for

schools within a fifty mile radius. Lectures are offered,

depending on age group. Audio-visual material includes autopsy

slides, photographs of cetacea in the wild and material on

diseases. Other materials are a basic essay on dolphins, posters

and a question and answer sheet for school children as well as

information supplied during the display. The oceanarium has a

collection of marine scientific papers and books. It liaises

with Australian and overseas scientific institutions and

exchanges information. The management stated that the Pet

Porpoise Pool has been used as a model for other programmes by


Hamilton Island. Queensland

4.33 No educational programme is offered.

Sea World. Surfers Paradise. Queensland

4.34 Sea World provides a programme for primary and

secondary schools which includes audio-visual presentations,

lectures on marine mammals by staff and the veterinary


consultant, and provision of educational material for project

use, including question and answer fact sheets, posters and a general essay on dolphins.33

4.35 Proponents of oceanaria consider that one of their most

important functions is 'to continually expose the public to the

animals to develop concern and awareness of their welfare and

environment1. This has not always been implemented in Australian

oceanaria. Three of the seven oceanaria exhibiting cetacea have

no educational component at all. Programmes offered by oceanaria

provide some information about cetacea both in captivity and in

the wild but less opportunity is provided for the general public

to learn about issues of cetacean welfare generally and about

specific conservation and preservation problems facing cetacea.

4.36 Critics of oceanaria have questioned the extent to

which a display in an artificial setting can teach about the

animal in its natural environment. One critic has stated:

1A paramount goal of environmental education is to establish in its target audiences of learners an appreciation of the ecological subtleties and balances of whatever

biophysical system is being taught. There is no way that the dolphinaria that I have seen elsewhere could be argued to be a reasonable approximation of the natural eco-system of dolphins. '34

4.37 There has been an attempt to make captive conditions

simulate more closely the natural eco-system of the animal being

exhibited. A workshop of the American Association of Zoological

Parks reported that:

1 Those who work with captive animals in

aquariums and zoos have a special obligation to convey knowledge of the natural world to the public and to interpret the lives of

animals accurately. Aquariums and zoos are obligated to portray animals as they are, to display animals under conditions that, so far


as possible, allow them to behave naturally, and to offer them adequate social contact, ideally with others of their species ...'35

Conditions of display in Australian oceanaria in the majority do

not simulate a natural environment. Facilities at Atlantis

Marine Park, Mar ineland of South Australia, Pet Porpoise Pool,

King Neptune's Park and African Lion Safari are unlandscaped

concrete pools which bear no resemblance to the cetacean's

natural marine environment. Atlantis, situated near the sea and

constructed recently, could have been expected to make a more

significant contribution to simulating a natural habitat. Sea

World, also situated near the sea, has a landscaped shelving

pool with sandy bottom which, more adequately represents a

marine environment.

4.38 Saayman and Taylor have commented:

'... while it is relatively practicable to

provide many terrestial mammals with

favorable seminaturalistic conditions in game reserves, it is difficult, if not impossible, for the majority of institutions to reproduce in captivity the necessary prerequisites to

cater for the unique socioecological

adaptations which the dolphin has made over millions of years. '36

4.39 Some of the tricks cetacea are trained to perform, such

as jumping for balls or using sonar to locate objects, are

extensions of their natural behaviour in the wild. However,

other tricks, such as having people ride on the back of the

dolphin, jumping through fiery hoops, or emulating human

conversation out of water, are obviously devised solely for


Viewing Cetacea in the Wild

4.40 Marine mammals appear, in their own habitat, at the

Penguin Parade at Phillip Island, at Monkey Mia, where dolphins

visit, and at Warrnambool, where Southern Right whales may be

seen about July each year.

4.41 However, there are a number of problems associated with

viewing cetacea in their own habitat as an alternative to seeing

them displayed in an oceanarium. In Australia, this form of

viewing of cetacea is just starting to become popular.

Facilities which can sustain large attendances have not been

developed for whale watching from the shore although plans are

underway at Warrnambool. Watching whales from boats off the

shore has not been taken up as a commercial proposition. Monkey

Mia is in an isolated area of Western Australia. Attendances at

oceanaria in Australia last year exceeded one and a half million

and have been, on the average, increasing. The present

conditions for viewing of cetacea in natural surroundings could

not sustain the numbers of people who visit oceanaria.

Furthermore, there is no guarantee that the cetacea will be

present when people go to see them. At Monkey Mia, the dolphins

often remain away from the site for three to four days. At

Warrnambool, the whales may only be seen around July. Watching

from the coast or even in boats has the disadvantage that what

can be seen of their behaviour above the water is a small part

of the activity occurring underwater and, unless feeding or

breeding, they are unlikely to remain in the same position for


4.42 There is also the danger that watchers may,

inadvertently or otherwise, harass the animals - an offence

under the Whale Protection Act. 1980 . This is a problem in the

U.S.A. where many boats go out to sea to enable people to see

cetacea. Although harassment of cetacea in the wild has not been

a major problem in Australia, some incidents have been reported


at Monkey Mia. The ANPWS is currently considering guidelines

aimed at developing an educated and sympathetic public able

to derive the most from their experience without unnecessarily

affecting the cetaceans with which they interact1.37

4.43 Hec Goodall considers that the pressure of the growing

number of visitors at Monkey Mia could affect the area and


'... we frankly see no easy solution and have to realistically concede that the delightful dolphin situation at Monkey Mia may sadly have a limited future ...'38

He believes that it is almost impossible to duplicate anywhere

else in Australia the favourable circumstances at Monkey Mia of

an isolated, unpolluted, sparsely populated area with a few

interested, gentle people who had access to ample fresh fish and

a lot of leisure to patiently and slowly cultivate the dolphins'

initially hesitant interest.

4.44 No studies have been carried out which compare the

educational impact of seeing cetacea live in oceanaria with

viewing them in the wild. Many whale enthusiasts attest to the

strong effect of seeing live cetacea for the first time, whether

this occurred in an oceanarium or in the wild. It has been

stated that:

1 there is something about the experience of being close to a whale or dolphin that

continues to draw thousands of people each year to aquariums and the ocean . .. This is

the lure of oceanariums, whale watching trips and dolphin shows.,39

4.45 Both forms of viewing require supplementary

interpretive and educational programmes to teach people about

what they are seeing. In the U.S.A., when whale watching changed

from being the recreation of a few enthusiasts to a business for


thousands of visitors, entertainment and educational facilities

were added and experienced naturalists accompanied excursions to

answer questions.40

4.46 A study of whale watching in the U.S.A. concluded that

seeing cetacea in their own environment has fostered awareness

of and concern for the marine environment generally. It stated


1 many people who go whale-watching out of curiosity or enthusiasm for whales have

little or no interest in other marine life. But the experience of seeing whales in their natural habitat leads many to take an active

interest in the marine environment.'41

The move among many institutions to display animals in

environments approximating their natural habitat indicates that

there is a perception that the impact is greater when animals

are seen in their own environment.

Audio-Visual Displays and Models

4.47 Some critics of oceanaria have argued that the advanced

technology of underwater filming makes live display unnecessary

anyway. Sidney Holt has stated that:

'we are now in an era when film and video,

camera and typewriter, handled by dedicated naturalists, can at last reveal to us and

show to the public what wild animals really look like and how they behave and live ... If

intentions are educational then it would be far better to invest in securing and widely distributing more such material than in

constructing yet more oceanaria.' 42

4.48 Television and other audio-visual programmes can

present the characteristics and behaviour of cetacea more

effectively than any other medium of display through the use of

sophisticated underwater technology. They can also have a strong


impact on viewers. For example, a television station in San

Francisco, which broadcast a locally produced documentary on

whales, was pledged $35 845 for the whale in the 17 minute break

that followed the screening of the film.43 Critics of television

as an educational resource state, however, that there is a loss

of information in half-hour specials which reveals the animals

entire life in a matter of minutes. The complexity of content,

scale and dimension of the environment, the actual presence of

the animal and the sense of interaction with it cannot be

adequately conveyed through this medium.44

4.49 School education programmes and displays such as the

1 exploratorium' , housing full-scale models of the blue whale and

sperm whale, proposed by Project Jonah45 are also excellent

educational resources. However, it is obvious from attendances

at oceanaria and at areas for viewing in the wild, that people

wish to experience cetacea live. It seems that people wish to

see live displays after their curiosity has been aroused by an

audio-visual programme or they seek more information about the

animal after seeing it live.





Research on Captive Cetacea

5.1 As noted in Chapter 4, much of what is currently known

about cetacea was discovered either through observations of, or

experiments with, cetacea in some oceanaria. These studies have

been carried out both by veterinarians or employees of oceanaria

and by other interested bodies such as government authorities or

university departments using the facilities of oceanaria.

Oceanaria have also carried out studies of cetacea in the wild

and have built up considerable expertise in rehabilitating

stranded cetacea, complementing the work done by government


5.2 Vancouver Aquarium, for instance, has published a list

of all research on wild and captive cetacea carried out between

1975 and 1982 which involved the use of aquarium staff,

facilities, materials, animals or funding.

5.3 Hubbs Sea World Research Institute is a non-profit

foundation with aquarium and acoustics laboratory which has

access to the animals at Sea World oceanarium in San Diego.

Among its projects it has co-operated with the Institute of

Developmental Biology in Moscow in a study of distinctive

natural markings to identify individual cetacea for population

studies, done aerial surveys of marine mammals in the Bering

Sea, carried out bioacoustic studies for future identification

of regional populations of killer whales, pilot whales and

several species of dolphins and studied the effects of noise

pollution on behaviour of beluga whales in Bristol Bay, Alaska.


5.4 Many of the publications cited in this report were the

result of studies carried out on captive cetacea in oceanaria,

or in other institutional captive or controlled situations.

Knowledge of behaviour, nutritional requirements, communication

and reproduction was established through these studies. The

United States Navy Department has, over the past 20 years,

conducted studies on cetacea at centres in California and Hawaii

which have provided information on physiology, anatomy, diseases

and diving.

5.5 However, Defran and Pryor, while summarising the

available scientific literature on the behaviour of cetacea in

captivity, complained that:

1 given the number and diversity of species that have been maintained in captivity ...

one would expect to find a rich literature on species-typical behaviour and on the

comparative behaviours of captive cetaceans. Such is far from the case. Relatively little published information is available for

captive species and what does exist is

heavily weighted toward the bottlenosed dolphin. ' 1

5.6 Knowledge about cetacea has also come from a variety of

other sources.

Other Research on Cetacea


5.7 Information on aspects of cetacean research such as

taxonomy, anatomy, life history, social structure, pathology and

diet have been gained from strandings. Strandings can also

provide an opportunity for obtaining data on the impact of human

activities on cetacea and on marine ecosystems such as heavy


imetal and accumulation. Collation and analysis of

istranding records may provide information on patterns and

changes in distribution and abundance of cetacea.

Commercially Harvested Cetacea

5.8 Most early knowledge of anatomy, distribution,

migration and feeding habits came from commercially harvested

cetacea and from observations by whalers. Curtailment of whaling

in some countries and high public awareness about preservation

lof whales has led, more recently, to an increasing emphasis on

research on live cetacea.

EBenign Research

5.9 Research has recently emphasised benign or

non-intrusive methods. At the preparatory meeting held at the

Seychelles, May 1983, for the Conference on Non-Consumptive

Utilisation of Cetacean Resources, benign research was defined

a s :

'research that does not depend on the

human-caused death of wild animals nor

involve significant stress or injury to them. This would in principle include research on dead stranded animals, but such research was not thought to be within the scope of this

Conference. Regarded, in this context, as a form of non-consumptive utilisation of

cetaceans, and to the extent that taking and holding cetaceans in captivity is regarded as non-consumptive, it follows that research on captive animals which meets the above

criteria would also be encompassed by the term.12

5.10 A recent application by Sea World of San Diego for a

:permit to capture 90 orcas for scientific research was

/considered by many critics to be invasive and cruel because it


involved processes such as stomach lavages, tooth pulling, liver

biopsies, tagging, and hearing and eye tests. The orcas were

released after the tests.

5.11. Studies of the type carried out on three cetacea at

Whipsnade in the United Kingdom, using video and sound

recordings, notes and keepers records, could be considered

non-intrusive because behaviour was monitored without disturbing

the animals.

Wild Cetacea

5.12 Studies on cetacea in the wild are becoming popular as

benign forms of research and increasingly effective with

advanced technology. Field studies using radio-tracking, static

tagging, aerial surveys, photography and observations of

naturally marked animals have provided information on diving

behaviour, movement patterns, population structure, social

behaviour and bioacoustics. Field work is expensive and is often

carried out or funded by governments. In the U.S.A., the

National Marine Fisheries Service has conducted a range of

research programmes. These included a census of the bowhead

whale population conducted between 1978 and 1981; a three-year

census of grey whales in Alaska, including studies on feeding,

ecology, migration and distribution; field studies on humpback

whales in Glacier Bay, including an acoustic survey, behaviour

of the whales in response to vessels; radio tracking and

photographic identification to provide information on

distribution, abundance and movements; and information gathering

on all cetacea on the north-east region's continental shelf.

During the 1970s an assessment of the killer whale populations

in British Columbia and Washington State was made by Canadian

and United States scientists using photo-identification

techniques. The study identified the number of pods and the

number of individuals within each pod.


5.13 In Australia, research on cetacea funded by the ANPWS

includes: aerial surveys of southern right and humpback whales

in Western Australia; aerial and shore-based surveys of humpback

whales on the east coast to assess numbers during northward

migration and to obtain information on behaviour such as

sighting cues, diving time, diving interval and period between

blows; and investigations into the incidental catch of small

cetacea in gillnet fishing in northern Australian waters.

5.14 Other institutions and individual researchers are also

involved with studies on cetacea in Australia. McNamara and

Harwood have stated that:

1 in Australia there is a good deal of

scientific interest in cetaceans; scientists in government departments, museums,

universities and other institutions are engaged in a range of research programs. The fields being covered include population

dynamics and modelling of exploited species, collection and analysis of sightings

information on a wide range of species,

investigations of interactions between small cetaceans and commercial fishing operations in Australian waters and analysis of

historical information on whaling. Some research is also being carried out on

cetacean reproduction, taxonomy, anatomy, behaviour and ecology.'4

Twenty-seven publications on cetacean research were listed in

the 1 Australian Progress Report on Cetacean Research, June 1982

to May 19831, presented to the IWC. To date, the only detailed

study of the ecology and behaviour of small cetacea in

Australian waters was of bottlenose dolphins, by Lear and Bryden.4

5.15 Several voluntary whale sighting programmes have been

carried out in other countries. Voluntary workers have provided

useful information by observing the behaviour of cetacea along

the South African coast. The Annual Symposium of the European


Association for Aquatic Mammals, which was held in Germany in

March 1985, listed sightings along the coasts of Belgium,

France, Monaco, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United

Kingdom. Information gained included data on distribution,

population status, movements, feeding, group size, size and


5.16 A cetacean sanctuary has been established by the IWC in

the Indian Ocean. In 19 81 a workshop to plan a programme of

scientific research in the sanctuary recommended benign research

on the biology of cetacea and their role in the marine

ecosystem, the establishment of research centres and

investigation of 1 frontier1 areas of cetacean research such as

communication, navigation, behaviour and physiology of diving.

Voluntary and Short-term Captivity

5.17 Another research alternative is emerging which is

somewhere between captivity and the wild. In the Institute of

Delphinial Research, directed by Jean-Paul Forton-Gouin, the

dolphins are in direct contact with the sea and are free to come

and go as they please. Paul Spong has established a floating

1orcalab' which allows him to observe orcas. Research proposed

included pod movement and acoustics, sensory psycho-physiology,

language learning, communications, behaviour, diving, frequency

of food intake, heart function and body temperature. Norris has

suggested a dolphin science sabbatical, a proposal previously

foreshadowed by John Lilly, where dolphins would be captured and

studied for a short period then released. In 1971, Hubbs Sea

World took a grey whale for a year to study then released it



Opposition to Research on Captive Cetacea

5.18 Opponents of oceanaria have been critical of research

with captive cetacea for four main reasons. Many believe that

sufficient research on captive cetacea has already been

undertaken. Project Jonah considered that:

1 increasingly, scientists are realising that the limits of the knowledge to be gained from captive cetaceans have already been reached and that to take understanding of these

wonderful creatures any further will

necessitate observations in the wild.15

5.19 It has been stated that research on captive cetacea

does not benefit cetacea generally. Belford concluded that:

1 although public service, and research have been said by some to be benefits of keeping captive cetaceans ... few, if any, benefits accrue to wild populations from this

research. The public can be equally or

better-served by viewing free-ranging animals either directly or on television. I am

unaware of any behaviour or nutritional research on captive dolphins which has been directly advantageous for wild animals. To the best of my knowledge, no diseases which can be treated in wild populations have been

identified in captive cetaceans.'6

5.20 Critics have claimed that studies done on captive

cetacea produce distorted results. Filleri considered that: 1

1 even when the only purpose is scientific study - the animals are so physically and

psychologically deformed in the process that any discoveries made are distorted and give a thoroughly inadequate picture of true

behaviour in the wild.'7


Saayman and Tayler have stated:

1 Studies of captive dolphins have been made possible largely as the result of the

establishment of public oceanaria where the primary emphasis is upon commercial display of trained animals. Results derived from such

studies may be distorted by a variety of

factors. Dolphins unresponsive to training procedures are generally rejected, and the colony therefore does not contain

representative samples of animals.

Furthermore, the age/sex ratios of normal populations of dolphins are not known and therefore cannot be duplicated in captivity. In many institutions captive conditions are grossly inadequate and the death rate is high

...; thus the possibility of long-term

studies on stable populations is often


5.21 It is also considered that the potential for adverse

effects of captivity on cetacea is likely to outweigh any

benefits from research findings obtained. Holt maintained that:

1 in our view there are virtually no subjects of scientific research that can now justify the retention of wild dolphins in the

artificial conditions of tanks and

circulating sea waters.'9

Rice quoted Eglash as saying:

11 cannot think of any reason, research or otherwise, which would justify the lengthy captivity which many cetaceans have been subject to. Field research and specimens from natural mortality should provide enough data to allow our understanding to progress; if not, then ignorance seems to me the best

alternative. Ί 0


Arguments in Favour of Research on Captive Cetacea

5.22 Ling has pointed out that:

1 the need to study captive animals to

complement field studies has become essential since access to biological material from commercial sources (whaling) has ceased, in Australia at least.'11

5.23 Abel has argued for the continuation of oceanaria for

research 'to develop our knowledge and understanding of the

animals and their needs to better protect them in the wild' ,!2

5.24 Klinowska and Nicholson, in a supplementary paper to

the Conference on Non-Consumptive Utilisation of Cetacean

Resources, believed that:

'although interest in cetaceans has increased greatly in recent years, the flow of new

quantitative scientific information has not matched this interest, except in a few areas, particularly those related to the management of large whales. There is a great need for

reliable information about the smaller

species, some of which are, or may be,

endangered particularly through by-catching and environmental change. Traditional field work is very costly in time and money - the

animals are visible for perhaps 5% of the

time and new observers need much training before they can even reliably identify

species. Small cetaceans, however, can be kept in captivity and it has been shown (Ray, Carlson, Carlson and Upson, 1981; Ray, Upson and Henderson, 1977; Martinez and

Klinghammer, 1978; Pryor and Kang, 1980) that the basic behaviours are present in

captivity, and in the field.'11


5.25 The Animals on Display workshop concluded that:

1 although technological developments have made it possible to extend some laboratory studies to field situations, many other

studies can only be done effectively - if at all - with captives.'14

5.26 Although Holt is opposed to keeping cetacea captive he

has come to the conclusion that:

'... there is one scientific enterprise, and one only, involving the cetaceans, which could justify maintenance of certain of the smaller species in captivity under special conditions. That is the attempt to

communicate between the species - us and them ... But even there, the most interesting

things are coming from observations and

experiment in the wild or in "open

captivity". Ί 5

5.27 Bryden has called for 1 symbiotic investigations of wild

and captive dolphins' because these are:

'central to the development of population models, and demonstrates how important

studies of captive animals can be in the

development of conservation strategies for dolphin stocks.

Research Aims

5.28 While a great deal has been discovered about cetacea

through research and a considerable amount of literature exists

on studies of captive and wild cetacea, the main concern is

whether it actually contributes to the welfare of the animals.

5.29 Threats to cetacean welfare in the wild have been

identified in Wake of the Whale17 as whaling, pollution, fishing

and harassment. Baltic seals abort their pups from


excess of poly-chlorinated biphenyls and it is possible that

cetacea do also. Whales entering the Mediterranean are likely to

be badly burned by chemical wastes. Dumped radioactive waste,

explosives and chemical weapons may possibly affect the

deep-diving species of cetacea such as the bottlenose dolphins and sperm whales.

5.30 Fishing is an immediate and even greater threat because

cetacea become entangled and drown in fishing nets. Fishing

could also reduce the food supply to the extent that it might

prevent recovery from previous depletion through whaling. If the

proposed krill fishery in the Antarctic goes ahead, baleen

whales may be classed as pests.

5.31 Overseas, there are examples of oceanaria carrying out

studies, on both captive and wild cetacea, which address some of

the identified threats to cetacean welfare, and of institutions

or individuals using the facilities or animals of oceanaria for

research for this purpose. This research function exists only in

a minority of oceanaria.

Research Programmes in Australian Oceanaria

5.32 In Australia, one oceanarium, Pet Porpoise Pool, has

had a major role in research on and preservation of cetacea. It

has co-operated with the Australian Museum at its own expense,

to monitor annually the populations of sperm, humpback and

southern right whales off the mid north coast of New South

Wales. It has a long record of rescue and rehabilitation

attempts for sick and stranded cetacea often at considerable

expense to the oceanarium. This has led to the identification of

species of cetacea virtually unknown in Australia and, in one

case, considered extinct. The management stated that: 1

1 the oceanarium's experience and expertise is widely utilized being regularly called upon in a consultancy capacity by Government and


Private interests, both locally and overseas. Significant marine life specimens resulting from the area's fishing industry operations and strandings are regularly, voluntarily collected, often at considerable expense and effort by the oceanarium and supplied to the Aus[tralian] Museum Sydney and appropriate Universities, etc. Ί 8

The oceanarium was used by CSIRO in 1972 for studies on seal

moulting. In 1973 researchers studying human blood clotting at

Austin Hospital, Melbourne, used blood collected from Mar ineland

(Surfers Paradise) and Pet Porpoise Pool. Dolphin blood samples

were also supplied to the Port Elizabeth Museum, South Africa,

in 1981. In 1984 the marine mammals at Pet Porpoise Pool were

used for research into animals' sweating mechanisms by the

Faculty of Veterinary Science at the University of Queensland.

Dawbin noted that Goodall' s work has been recognised by his

appointment as an associate of the Australian Museum.19

5.33 Atlantis has also recently made a contribution to the

preservation of wild cetacea by co-operating in studies on the

threat of gillnet fishing to small cetacea. ANPWS provided funds

for a study by the Western Australian Museum on incidental

drownings of cetacea in gillnet fishing. In this study, captive

cetacea at Atlantis Marine Park were used to determine whether

they could detect acoustically reflective materials which might

be attached to gillnets to help cetacea to avoid being caught in

those nets.

5.34 Mar ineland of South Australia conceded that it had not

initiated any scientific studies and stated 'we are not in the

science business'.28 However, they had been approached by a

Federal Government Department inquiring into the possible

training of dolphins in particular patterns of behaviour.2!


5. 35 Hyne stated that he has not carried out any experiments

on the cetacea in his veterinary care at the African Lion

Safari, Warragamba, but that 1 the routine findings that we have

accumulated both from monthly examinations and from examinations

on sick animals have been the basis of a couple of papers that I

have had published1. Two veterinary students have produced

papers which involved study of captive cetacea and some 1 people

claiming to have knowledge of communication, mental telepathy,

with cetaceans have been allowed to associate with the

animals' . 22

5. 36 King Neptune' s Park at Port Macquarie does not have any research programmes. They do not employ a biologist or

scientist. The management stated that because their facility was

not situated near a university, no research in association with

scientific studies was carried out. They had written to

Newcastle University, however, inviting use of their captive animals for research purposes. 23 They had also been involved in

rescue and rehabilitation of sick and stranded marine animals.

5. 37 Sea World has worked closely with University of

Queensland for a number of years. A study of parasites in marine

mammals has been carried out by Dr R. Lester of the University.

Sea World and the University have planned a tagging programme to

study the migratory habits of local herds of Tursiops. Anatomy students from the University regularly visit Sea World. Dr

Bryden, from the Anatomy Department, specialises in marine

mammals and uses the animals at Sea World. He has published

several papers on his findings.


Assessment of R s rch B n fits

5.38 The research carried out by or in association with

oceanaria in Australia, with the notable exception of Pet

Porpoise Pool cannot be said to have made a major contribution

to the preservation and conservation of cetacea. In relation to

the gillnet fishing trials carried out using captive cetacea at

Atlantis, seemingly the most important contribution made by an

oceanarium to the preservation of cetacea which die in their

thousands in this manner annually, ANPWS said:

'It would be fair to say that that research

could not have been done with wild animals. Whether it was absolutely essential to do it is really not at issue. It certainly made the research that we were considering more

efficent in that we were able to eliminate

some materials and select others. It really

devolves into a question of a particular piece of research, the benefits that are seen

to come from that research in themselves and the costs involved in keeping an animal in captivity. It is a matter of weighing those in individual instances.’

5.39 It has been argued that the costs to cetacea of keeping

them in captivity have been considerably reduced; that studies

on cetacea have led to a greater understanding of their needs in

captivity and to subsequent improvements in captive techniques,

husbandry and conditions. These have often been incorporated

into guidelines which many oceanaria must 'now comply with.

However, evidence currently available does not conclude that

captive cetacean welfare is necessarily improved under these

conditions. Atlantis, the only oceanarium in Australia

established under guidelines, has had no capture or captive

mortalities. However, it has only been established since 1981 so

insufficient time has elapsed to make any conclusive assessment.

Marineland of South Australia, which in the view of the

Committee does not have ideal conditions, has had two successful


births in captivity and its present three adult inhabitants have

been held there for 16 years. Two of the original colony have

died, one after seven years and the other after 14 years in

captivity. Pet Porpoise Pool, similarly, does not use the

husbandry system recently developed after research and used

currently by Atlantis, yet it has had two successful births and

some very successful cases of rehabilitation of cetacea in

difficult circumstances.

5.40 Even if it could be demonstrated that captive cetacean

welfare had improved considerably through research, there is not

adequate evidence to show that this research has yet had results

for the welfare of cetacea generally which would justify that


5.41 Captive cetacean research has contributed to knowledge

of physiology, behaviour, nutritional requirements,

communication and life history. However, as well as having the

potential for adversely affecting cetacean welfare, it has the

disadvantage that captive behavioural modifications will affect

research results. Research on diseases in captivity is similarly

constrained because different Inicrobial pathogerm; exist in the

wild. Ecology of the species, population studies, migratory

patterns, social structure and feeding behaviour cannot be

studied in captivity.

5.42 Research on wild cetacea, however, also has some

disadvantages. Traditional field work is costly in time and

money. Research directed at migrating, breeding or feeding

animals has the potential for disruption of normal behaviour

Emtterns and population studies require a long—term commitment

for meaningful results to emerge. There is no opportunity to

Control some environmental variables while varying others for experimental research.





6.1 Critics of oceanaria contend that the mental and

physical welfare of cetacea suffers in captivity because their

environment is so different. Project Jonah has stated that

it is not possible to adequately cater for the needs of an

intelligent, social, free-ranging animal like a dolphin in

captivity'.1 They believe that boredom, frustration, compression

of activity and sensory deprivation are caused by captive


6.2 Some criticism of cetacean welfare centres on

observations of the animal in the two different situations. Dr

Sidney Holt believes that:

1 One has only to see animals in the wild in

comparison with the appearance of those that have been for any time in captivity to see

vast differences in condition and


6.3 Critics have been alleged that cetacean behaviour in

captivity exhibits symptoms of stress analagous to human

reactions in captive situations. Bindley argues that:

'many species of animals seem to experience the full range of human emotions including grief, anxiety, and depression. There is also considerable evidence to indicate the

development of psychotic and neurotic

behaviour under prolonged and extreme

stress. '3


Pilleri maintains that captive conditions for cetacea are

1 equivalent to the increasingly deprecated solitary confinement

of man1 and that cetacean behaviour in this situation displays

typical symptoms of prison neurosis.4

6.4 Animal welfare scientists consider that stress in

animals is difficult to define and measure. They conclude that

assessments must be based on as much knowledge as possible about

behaviour, physiology and external appearance without projecting

human emotions and expectations onto the animal.5

6.5 Andersen has suggested that:

1 In the psychic environment there may be many serious causes for a high mortality but it is almost impossible objectively to

define these causes. Dolphins have only few objective signs which can give us a hint of their psychic state of health. It always ends up with a kind of feeling or believe

(sic) . 16

6.6. Lee rejected the argument that:

'largely by inference from the effects of solitary confinement on humans, it is

concluded that cetacea suffer in


He considered that:

1 the conclusion that cetaceans respond similarly to humans in confinement, whether it is based upon relative "intelligence", brain size or structure, or behavioural capacity is highly subjective. It is even possible to argue that cetaceans by virtue of their behavioural capacity, may enjoy the environment of a marine park.18


6.7 He contended that the only objective way of assessing

the effects of capture and captivity on cetacea is to examine

evidence of responses which are typical of animals experiencing

adverse environments:

1 These responses are increased mortality and reduced longevity, impaired reproduction, physiological stress and abnormal


6.8 In a core paper for the Global Conference on the

Non-Consumptive Utilisation of Cetacean Resources, Filleri

identified behavioural changes and physical degeneration in

captive cetacea which, he concluded, did indicate stress.

6.9 Pilleri considered that:

1 the lack of space in aquaria and the

complete isolation of cetacea or the

reduction in the size of their communities, leaving only a few specimens together, have an extremely adverse effect which results in serious psychic disturbances in the


6.10 He found that behavioural disorders manifesting psychic

disturbance included stereotype gestures such as the adoption of

iterative routes, establishment of pecking orders,

aggressiveness towards other cetacea and people, suicidal

tendencies, masturbation and homosexuality.

6.11 Stress, he considered, was caused by the cramped

conditions in oceanaria. Cetacea were used to travelling long

distances in large schools. This situation could not be emulated

by oceanaria and 'desocialisation1 occurred as a result. As

well, captivity removed the fight for existence and the

ambivalence between wanting and not wanting, owing to fear,

became intensified and stereotyped to form severe tensions. A

final cause of cetacean stress was that the bond with their own


spatio-temporal system is seriously disturbed and contact with

humans and dressage can never replace the relationships

prevailing in the wild.H

6.12 Pilleri also argued that captive cetacea displayed many

physical signs of degeneration as a result of their captive

environment. These included probable brain size reduction with

atrophy in the areas most responsible for controlling the means

of communication, ultimately resulting in the cetacea ceasing to

emit sounds underwater. This was because captivity made no

demands on the sensory organs. Cetacea, fed dead fish, did not

need to track down prey and they could find their way around the

pool without using their sonar. Other physical signs included

adiposity or conversely, weight loss, and the fin of the orca,

usually rigidly upright in the wild, drooped in captivity.

Finally, Pilleri considered the possibility that dressage might

affect the polyphase sleep pattern of cetacea.

6.13 He concluded that the combination of unhygienic

conditions, stress and physical degeneration had much to do with

the high mortality rate of cetacea in oceanaria.

6.14 Nick Carter had also arrived at the conclusion that

cetacea suffered from stress in captivity. He stated that:

'there is no longer any question that

psycho-physiological effects have been, and continue to be, prime causes of the

suffering and consequent high mortality rates among captive dolphins. Ί 2

Carter, citing work done by Robson,13 described various

situations in which respiratory problems ending in death were

caused by psycho-physiological reactions.


6.15 He referred to several case histories where physical

signs or abnormal behaviour were the consequence of capture,

holding or transport induced stress. A dolphin developed a

duodenal ulcer when it became nervous because of crowds peering

at it through a glass wall. Several dolphins became aggressive

towards humans and cetacea and some had to be released. A pilot

whale developed symptoms of psychoneurosis. One day, as it was

being watched by crowds through the glass of its tank, it

deliberately swam at the glass and smashed it.

6.16 Saayman and Tayler have written:

1 Among the most important prerequisites for the maintenance of a healthy breeding colony of dolphins is an adequately spacious pool, the acoustical properties of which should cater to the acute auditory perception of dolphins ... Inadequate spatial conditions may lead to abnormally severe aggression.

The widely varying composition of

free-ranging groups of dolphins ...

indicates that provision should be made in captivity for the animals to associate or disperse at will. Ideally, an offending dolphin should be able to retreat from both

the sight and sound of a more dominant

animal. Furthermore, dolphins rely primarily upon acoustical mechanisms for navigational and discriminatory purposes ..., but in

captivity they are often maintained in small and shallow circular tanks with concrete walls and glass windows. These holding

facilities represent, in effect, acoustical reverberation chambers which may grossly disturb an animal with a highly developed auditory perceptual system. The clinically

sterile conditions of many oceanaria,

although presenting favorable viewing conditions for the public, deprive the

dolphins of all contact with marine flora and fauna, the latter representing their prey. In the case of inshore dolphins, which usually inhabit murky seas, crystal clear water in captivity may further inhibit their

normal acoustical repertoire. The absence of the above prerequisites may, indeed, lower the physical condition of the animals, a factor in itself likely to distort the


results of behavioral studies. In summary, while it is relatively practicable to

provide many terrestrial mammals with

favorable seminaturalistic conditions in game reserves, it is difficult, if not

impossible, for the majority of institutions to reproduce in captivity the necessary prerequisites to cater for the unique

socioecological adaptations which the dolphin has made over millions of years.'

6.17 There is considerable difficulty in establishing

whether certain behaviour in captive cetacea indicates suffering

or stress. There are over 50 different species of small cetacea

with vastly differing life patterns so the reaction of each

captive species must be assessed against the behaviour exhibited

by its wild counterparts for an accurate analysis. However,

often little is known about the history, distribution,

environment and activities of many of these species.

6.18 Certain broad behavioural patterns are displayed by

most cetacea in the wild including formation of schools,

co-operation among members, epilemetic (care-giving) behaviour,

formation of complicated social structures and separate feeding,

resting and play activities. Within these behavioural patterns

there are significant differences. Some species are deep sea

animals which are only seen out in the ocean and rarely come

near the shore. Others have been observed remaining close to the

coastline, swimming into the shallow shore for rest. Some

cetacea swim long distances on a seasonal basis while others are

observed always in the same area. While some species feed and

are most active during the day, others are nocturnal feeders and

species such as orca are equally as active day and night.

Tropical and temperate oceanic dolphins typically form large

schools, while schools of species found near the shore are much


smaller. Single dolphins may be encountered in bays and rivers.

Orca, killer whales, live in family groups for life. They form

small, extremely stable, polygynous pods. Pseudorca. false

killer whales, also form highly cohesive schools. Species such

as Tursiops truncatus. bottlenose dolphin, Stenel3a. spotted

dolphin, Sousa, white dolphin and Lagenorhynchus. pacific white

sided dolphin, create large and highly fluid schools often

divided into sub groups which may remain stable only for short

periods before changing. Delphinus delphi. common dolphin,

greatly disturbs the surface of the water when it travels,

unlike Lagenorhynchus or Lissodelphis. northern right whale

dolphin which can hardly be seen in the water. Globicephala

macrorhynchus. short finned pilot whale has been observed lying

for long periods at the surface in stationary schools, blowholes

and anterior portions of the back exposed above the water.15

6.19 A further problem in using behaviour to assess cetacean

welfare is that there are wide variations in reactions to

capture and captivity by different species and by different

individuals within the same species. In one study of a live

capture fishery in Southern California, reactions to capture and

initial captivity were observed as covering the range from

advanced shock to calm, uneventful behaviour. One species

suffered from sharp-edged ulcers for which the cause was

considered to be stress. Another species started swimming and

eating normally almost immediately and had no physical or

behavioural signs of stress. One species has been known to make

high speed runs at the walls of the enclosure. Reactions within

the same species were also shown to differ markedly according to

the age of the individual. Reactions of remaining members of the

pod in the wild also varied. In some cases individuals waited by

the captured animal until it was taken into the boat. Other

species left their companion immediately. Members of some

species became aggressive when their companion was captured.16


6.20 All overseas reports of capture and transportation of

cetacea indicated that they all showed signs of considerable

stress during this period. This has been, or could have been

mitigated in some cases with improved capture and transportation

techniques. However, obvious behavioural and physical

abnormalities seem to occur in all cetacea during capture.17

Frequent injections of drugs and force feeding immediately after

capture would confirm that cetacean welfare is considered to be

severely at risk during this time.

6.21 Concepts of normality may vary according to the period

of time the animal has spent in captivity. Cetacean behaviour

immediately after the animal is placed in captivity seems to be

considered normal, by overseas accounts, when heartbeat and

respiration are normal, the cetacean is feeding voluntarily and

aggressive activities and chaotic swimming patterns have

a b a t e d . C e t a c e a which have been kept captive for a

considerable length of time or which have been born in captivity

will be considered normal if they carry out most aspects of

known social patterns such as courtship, mating, consort

relations, birth, rest and piay.19

6.22 As well as age, species and individual behavioural

variations, different captive conditions and treatment of

captives such as size of tank, presence of other cetacea, extent

of human intervention, training techniques and numbers of

performances daily may elicit different behaviours.20

6.23 Evidence indicates that there are a great many

variables which must be taken into account when assessing

cetacean behaviour in captivity and in drawing any conclusions

about whether a particular form of behaviour indicates that the

animal is suffering.

6.24 Defran and Pryor, after reviewing available evidence,

have concluded:


1 not all species have been kept routinely or with equal success. Such factors as

availability, ease of collection and

transport, and state-of-the-art medicine, husbandry, and training technology have favored the maintenance of some species over

others. Additionally, the ease of

maintaining a species in tank settings seems to reflect in part the ecological

characteristics of the natural habitat of the species. The shallow, coastal water favored by the bottlenosed dolphin in the northern areas of the Gulf of Mexico

apparently preadapt it well for tank living. In contrast, open-ocean pelagic species such as Dali's porpoise, Phocoena dalli. seem to have much greater difficulty in adapting to

the tank environment. The sociobiology of the species, especially the degree of

dependence on con-specific tank mates, also plays a part in the adjustment process.'21

6.25 More information is required to establish specific

behaviours under particular conditions for objective stress

measurement. This includes:

normal patterns of behaviour of particular species in

the wild;

comparisons of behaviour patterns of cetacea which have

been held in captivity for a short time and for a long


comparisons of patterns of behaviour of cetacea

captured in the wild and those born in captivity;

differences in behaviour associated with variations in

species, sex, age and weight;

variations in environmental conditions such as size of

pool, water conditions, food, noise, light and presence

of other cetacea;


details of husbandry methods;

- effects of different approaches to training,

performances and human intervention;

- use and effect of anti-stress agents; and

- aetiology of diseases.

6.26 There is general acknowledgement even among those who

support oceanaria, that cetacean behaviour is changed by

captivity and that adverse effects may result.

6.27 The Animals on Display Workshop stated that:

1 bringing animals into captivity alters their natural state. If captivity causes adverse effects, these effects, on balance, are outweighed by such benefits as

enhancement of human appreciation for all animals, conservation of species, and

advancement of knowledge.'22

6.28 Norris was equivocal. In 1980 he wrote:

'most that is known in any depth about the behaviour of dolphins has come from

observations of captive animals. Yet the environment of captivity, which is at best a pool a few dozen metres in longest dimension and 5 or 10m deep, can allow only certain aspects of normal behaviour to occur.

Intragroup relationships may persist, but are usually distorted because relationships seldom remain intact. At best only hints of normal movement and activity patterns can persist where feeding schedules are

determined by the work days of trainers.'22


However, he also indicated that:

1 captive dolphins, given adequate numbers, sex and age distribution, (more than 3 to 5) will establish quite normal social patterns between members. They play, seek special

sleep partners, instruct their young, caress and sometimes quarrel. 124


1 in the captive environment the movement patterns of wild animals are of course

restricted, but because such animals

continue to swim nearly all the time, just as their wild relatives do, they may move as far in a day. Stereotyped "zoo patterns" are very seldom seen in the adaptable species,

though oceanic animals may circle much of the time and should not be kept except in

special experimental situations.125

6.29 Ridgway was also unsure. He stated that:

1 it is possible that survival in captivity is related to the psychological stress

caused by the captive conditions. Major illness episodes have been shown to occur after major life change events in humans. (Rahe et. al. 1967.) This does not

necessarily apply to other species.'26

6.30 There is both overseas and Australian evidence of

behavioural abnormality in captive cetacea which may be

attributable to stress . 27

6.31 However, some findings on behaviour have been

considered contentious or have been refuted. Norris denied that

cetacea go mute in captivity. He pointed out that:

'Well over half of all scientific studies of their sounds have been done with trained animals in tank environments, and in fact,


George Filleri (1982) , who has raised the question, has himself published papers on the sounds of captive dolphins.128

With regard to brain atrophication claimed by Pilleri, Ridgway

has stated:

1 during the past 15 years, I have examined the brains from dolphins that died at four of the largest oceanaria in the United

States. My series includes dolphins that had been in captivity for as long as 16 years. I have found no evidence to support the claim

of Pilleri (1983) that "cetacea kept in

captivity actually do display many symptoms of degeneration".'29

Ridgway has also denied that dolphins go mute in captivity. He

states that:

1 My present studies concern the sonic

repertoire of dolphins captive for as long as 22 years. I have recorded as many as

50 000 sounds from an individual in a single 24-hour day.'20

6.32 Abel claims that Pilleri1s observations on behaviour

and physical abnormalities were distorted by the very small size

of tank being used.21 it should be noted also that Pilleri

observed that when a male cetacean was placed in a larger steel

tank with a capacity of 30 cubic metres:

1 The greater width ... allows the animal

more freedom in its movements and during the last six months new swimming patterns have been observed. The individual movements are

not stereotyped; the changeover from one pattern to another is very irregular and impossible to anticipate.'22

6.33 Forms of behaviour attributed to captive cetacea such

as stress, aggression, dominance, masturbation and relationships

with other cetacean species have also been observed for wild

cetacea and documented in the literature cited. Some animal


welfare scientists consider that conflict, frustation and stress

experienced by animals in the wild are probably helpful in

survival and reproduction. It is not always possible, on the

available evidence, to know whether the nature and extent of

these forms of behaviour in captivity differ from those which

occur in the wild.

6.34 It is not possible to generalise from examples of

behaviour in specific cases to conclude that all cetacea suffer

in captivity. Information on cases often does not identify

species, age, numbers of other cetacea present and the

conditions under which the cetacean was kept captive. Carter,

for instance, citing the case of the dolphin with the duodenal

ulcer stated:

1 it was found that this animal alone, of the entire group, had become nervous because of the crowds that peered at him through a

glass wall.'33

6.35 Available information does confirm that all cetacea

suffer some stress during capture and transportation.

6.36 In Australia, two observations about apparent stress in

cetacea were documented at African Lion Safari, Warragamba by F .

Smith.34 and at Atlantis Marine Park, Yanchep by R. Fuller.35

Mortality and Longevity

6.37 It is generally accepted that analyses of mortality

rates and longevity can be used for the objective measurement of

the welfare of animals in captivity.

6.38 Overseas evidence shows that cetacean mortalities are

high in captivity and that life expectancy is reduced. A summary

of all information sighted on overseas mortalities is included

in Appendix II.


6.39 However a number of problems exist in assessing

mortality and longevity data. Information on longevity and

mortality rates for different species of cetacea in the wild is

far from complete and it is not always possible to compare

captive and wild rates. There is, however, some limited data.

Gaskin concluded that the maximum life span of Delohinus Delphis

is about 25 years36 and that the life span of free-ranging

Tursiops is up to 20 years.37 Bigg considered that orca may live

from 48 to 100 years in the wild.3 ® Ridgway believed that

mortality in the wild is between 10 and 20 per cent annually.39

Spong found a 9.3 per cent mortality for orca over a ten year


6.40 The evidence on mortalities is disputed by a number of

critics on both sides of the debate. Belford noted that few data

on captive cetacea had been provided by independent scientists

not employed by or associated with aquaria and he went on to

illustrate that there have been considerable differences between

the results of various surveys.43

6.41 Norris characterised Pilleri's documentation of capture

mortality as a 1 series of undated instances whose total numbers

or trends cannot be assessed1. He claimed that newer methods of

capture and husbandry have made significant changes. Species

which are good captive animals have been identified and

difficult forms are now no longer sought. Captive mortality

rates for bottlenose dolphins, the most commonly kept species,

have dropped and:

1 Present data indicate that in the best organizations life spans for it may exceed those in nature and births are frequent.142

6.42 Pilleri, in turn, has criticised the findings of

decreased mortality in oceanaria by the Animals on Display

Workshop,43 based on the census of captive marine mammals in the

United States from 1979 to 1983 , calling the statistics

nothing more than a meaningless bag of incommensurable

relations' .44

6.43 Abel has written,

'I am aware of the selective mortality

statistics being used by Project Jonah

Victoria in opposition to Marine Parks. However, many of the figures quoted have not been quantified, and presented in

perspective to the current legislations, guidelines or status of Marine Parks in

Australia in 1984.145

Project Jonah, Victoria, has countered by alleging that:

'While figures from overseas dolphinaria have been difficult to come by, accurate figures from Australian dolphinaria have been quite impossible to obtain. '46

6.44 Abel drew attention to the study of cetacean

mortalities made by Walker (See Appendix II). He considered:

'... that it has been misused in another

attempt to substantiate and give scientific credibility to the arguments put forward by todays activists.'

He pointed out that Walker observed that a thorough, systematic,

detailed examination of possible variables that may potentially

affect changes in the mortality of cetaceans captured in the

future is much needed. These studies should provide additional

information to update clinical and husbandry techniques in order

to cover capture mortality. He went on to say that Walker

further stated that the greatest mortality of all species

concerned occurs in the first year of captivity and that the


data presented in the paper on longevity and mortality rates are

actually analysed over a two year period. Several major advances

have been made in the techniques mentioned and as a result

mortalities in these first two year periods have been overcome.

Abel argued that the result of Walker's paper now would show 100

per cent survival when we now keep only those species, Tursiops

or Sousa in captivity.47

6.45 Abel considered that it is necessary to identify: the

source of the statistics being quoted, the species involved, the

circumstances under which they were collected, the reason for

collection, whether the statistics included stranded animals,

the capture conditions, whether the statistics were within a 5,

5-10, 10-15 or 15-40 year period and whether the cetacea were

collected prior to or after whale protection legislation and


6.46 Statistics for mortalities during capture for oceanaria

and for cetacea in captivity in oceanaria in Australia show that

generally Australia has a better record than overseas in

catching and keeping cetacea.

Table 2: Capture Mortality for Cetacea

for Australian Ocsanaria


Atlantis, Yanchep 4

Marineland of SA, Adelaide 3

King Neptune's Park, Port Macquarie 2

Pet Porpoise Pool, Coffs Harbour 0

African Lion Safari, Warragamba 3

Sea World, Surfers Paradise 7



















T able 3 : A u s t r a l i a n C a p t i v e C e t a c e a n M o r t a l i t i e s



A t l a n t i s Mari ne 1 Tur si ops t r u ncatus M 5-9 1981

Park 2 Tur si ops tr u n c a t u s M 5-9 1981

W e s t e r n 3 Tur si ops t r u ncatus M 5-9 1981

Au stral ia 4 Tur si ops truncatus F 5-9 1981

5 Tu r si ops truncatus F 5-9 1981

6 Tur si ops truncatus F 5-9 1981

7 Tu r si ops t r u ncatus F 5-9 1 981


C a p t u r e B r e a k a w a y Hoop

Ca pt u r e B r e a k aw ay Hoop

C a p tu r e B reakaway Hoop

Ca pt u r e B r e a k a w ay Hoop

C a p t u r e B reakaw ay Hoop

Ca pture B r e a k a w a y Hoop

C a p t u r e B reakaway Hoop

A f r i c a n Lion 2 Tu r si ops gil 11? F 20-25

Safari 3 T u r s i o p s B p . F 25 +

New South W a l e s 4 Tu r si ops sp. F 4-8

5 T u r s i o p s B p . F 15 +

6 T u r s i o p s sp. F 15 +

7 T u r s i o p s sp. M 12 +


8 T u r s i o p s sp. F 2-4

9 T u r s i o p s sp. F 7-9

10 Tursi ops B p . F 2

11 T u r s i o p s B p . M 10-15

1 2 Tursi ops sp. M 15-20

13 T u r s i o p s sp. M 15

1 4 D e l p h i n u s sp. F 3 +

15 T u r s i o p s B p . ?

16 Tursi o p s B p . F

17 Tursi ops e p . M

1 6 . 1 . 7 3


16 . 1 . 7 3

26.1 0 . 7 3

2 8 . 1 1 . 7 3 5 . 10 . 7 4

Nov. 19 7 4

12.1 2 . 7 5

28.1 .76


2 3.3.77


1 2.7.77

2 4 . 1 1 . 8 0


15.1 1.83

16 . 3 . 7 3

10 . 8 . 7 3

21 .11.75

11.11 .73

5 . 9 . 7 4

2 7 . 7 . 7 6

2 6 . 1 . 7 7


14.1 2 . 7 9

1 3 .7.77

2 4 . 1 1 . 8 0

8,3.82 3 0 . 1 2 . 8 3

Sea* orld,

Se aw o rl d , Seaw o rld,


Ca pt u r a

Ca pt u r a

C a p t u r e

C a p t u r e

C a p t u r e

Seaworld S e a w o r l d

Se aw o rld

S t r a n d l n g

Ca p t i v e birth

Ca pt 1 v a birth

C a ptive birth

Old Net In S h a l l o w










M a r i n e l a n d o f 1 T u r s i o p s t r u n c a t u s

S o u t h A u s t r a l i a 2 T u r s i op s t .

3 T u r a i o p s t .

4 T u r s i o p e t .

5 T u r s i o p s t .

6 T u r s i op s t .

7 T u r s i o p s t .

M 1 8 - 2 0 1 9 6 9

M 1 8 - 2 0 1 9 69

F 6 1 9 6 9

F 1 9 6 9

F 1 8 - 2 0 1 9 6 9

M 5

F 3

19 80

1 9 8 2

Ca p t u r e

Ca p t u r e

1 9 83 C a p t u r e

1 9 7 5 C a p t u r e

Ca p t u r e

Ca p 1 1 v e b i r t h

Ca p t i v e b i r t h

Pa t Po r po i se 1 T u r s i o p s t . F 27 12 1 / 2 1 97 4

P o o l 2 T u r s i op s t . M 16 1 2 1 / 2 1 97 4

New S o u t h W a l e s 3 T u r s i o p s t . F 5 1 9 7 9

4 T u r s i op s t . F 1 9 7 5

5 T u r s i o p s t . F 1 9 7 9

6 T u r s i o p s t . F 1 9 8 4

7 T u r s i o p s t . ? 19 85

S t r a n d i n g

S t r a n d i n g

Ca p t 1 v e b i r t h

1 9 7 5 A c c i d e n t i a l n e t t i n g

1 9 8 0

R e m o v e d f r o m

s t r a n d e d m o t h e r

Ca p t i v e b i r t h

Saaw o r l d 1 T u r s i o p s t . F 32 19 1 9 6 6

Q u e e n s l a n d 2 T u r s i o p s t . M 25 1 8 1 9 6 7

3 S o u s a c h i n e n s i s F 25 17 1 9 6 8

4 T u r s i o p s t . M 25 16 1 9 6 8

5 T u r s i o p s t . F 1971 1 9 8 1

6 T u r s i o p s t . F 1 9 13 1 9 7 2

7 T u r s i o p s t . F 197 2 1 9 7 8

8 T u r s i o p s t . F 17 13 1 9 72

9 T u r s i o p s t . M 20 13 1 9 7 2

10 T u r s i o p s t . M 16 1 2 1 9 7 3

11 T u r s i o p s t . 1 9 7 3 ?

1 2 T u r s i o p s t . M 1 973 1 9 7 7

13 T u r s i o p s t . M 1 97 3 1 9 7 7

14 T u r s i o p s t . M 1 973 1 9 8 3

1 5 T u r s i o p s t . F 1 8 11 1 9 7 4

16 T u r s i o p s t . M 16 11 1 9 7 4 1 9 8 5



S e a W o r l d 1 7 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 7 1 0 1 9 7 5

Q u e e n s l e n d 1 8 T o r s i o p s t . M 9 1 / 2 1 9 7 6

( C o n t i n u e d ) 1 9 T o r s i o p s t . 7 1 9 7 6 1 9 8 3

2 0 T o r s i o p s t . M 1 9 7 8 1 9 8 3

2 1 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 9 7 8 1 9 8 3

2 2 T o r s i o p s t . F 5 1 9 8 0

2 3 T o r s i o p s t . M 1 9 4 1 9 8 1

2 4 T o r s i o p s t . 1 9 8 1 1 9 8 1

2 5 P s e u d o r c e c r e s s i d e n s F 1 9 8 2 1 9 8 2

2 6 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 9 8 2 1 9 8 2

2 7 T o r s i o p s t . M 1 9 8 2 1 9 8 2

2 8 T o r s i o p s t . F 3 1 9 8 2

2 9 T o r s i o p s t . M 2 1 9 8 3

' - J 3 0 T o r s i o p s t . F 2 1 9 8 3

3 1 T o r s i o p s t . 1 9 8 3 1 9 8 3

3 2 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 1 / 2 1 9 8 4

3 3 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 1 / 2 1 9 8 4

3 4 P s e o d o r c e c r a s s i d e n s M 1 1 / 2 1 9 8 5

3 5 P s e u d o r c a c r a s s i d e n s F 1 9 8 5

3 6 T o r s i o p s t . F 2 0 1 / 2 2 5 . 6 . 8 5

3 7 T o r s i o p s t . F 5 1 / 2 3 0 . 8 . 8 5

3 8 T o r s i o p s t . F 7 1 / 2 7 . 5 . 8 5

K i n g N e p t o n e s 1 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 5 - 1 6 1 2

P a r k , N . S . W . 2 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 4 7

3 T o r s i o p s t . M 8 5

4 T o r s i o p s t . F 4 5 w k s 1 9 7 7

5 T o r s i o p s t . F 1 0 3 w k s 1 9 8 0

6 T o r s i o p s t . F 8 - 1 0 3 w k s 1 9 8 1

7 T o r s i o p s t . F 6 5 w k s 1 9 8 2

8 W h i t e R i v e r d o l p h i n F 1 4 7 y r s 1 9 7 4

C a p t u r e d P o i n t P l u m b e r

C a p t u r e d n e a r P o r t M a c q u a r i e

S t r a n d e d i n K e n d a l l R i v e r

1 9 7 7 S t r a n d i n g

1 9 8 0 S t r a n d i n g

1 9 8 1 S t r a n d i n g

1 9 8 2 S t r a n d i n g

1 9 8 1 C a p t u r e d H a r v e y B a y .

1 2 - 1 8 m o n t h s i n P e t

P o r p o i s e P o o l .


1 9 8 4


6.47 Lee has stated that:

1 Physiological stress in mammals is usually accompanied by impaired reproduction. Established effects are infertility,

in utero loss of embryos, in utero damage of embryos, delayed maturation and impaired lactation and parental neglect.149

6.48 In North America, a census for the period 1976 to 1979

found that 70 per cent of establishments containing cetacea

which had been contacted had, or were in the process of

establishing, breeding programmes and that there had been a

marked increase in births for the period. Data collected by

Ridgway and Benirschke for the period to 1975 indicated that, in

the 53 per cent of zoos and 67 per cent of oceanaria surveyed in

North America, there had been 107 Tursiop truncatus births in

captivity. Of these, 22 were still alive in 1976. Cornell, Asper

and Duffield found that between 1976 and 1979 there were more

than 25 Tursiop truncatus births in captivity and 14 were still

alive in 1979. Data were provided for numbers of stillbirths and

early calf mortalities caused by lack of maternal care or

inexperience on the part of the mother, for the most

reproductively successful cetacean - the bottlenose dolphin. The

number of stillborn or early deaths remained consistent at 45

per cent for the three years. The authors stated that:

1 the data covered several breeding

programmes and did not seem to be related directly to such problems as the effects of capture since all the births recorded were clearly conceived in captivity. The

1976-1979 values for stillbirths and early mortalities in the Bottle nosed dolphin are similar to those collected in a

comprehensive survey of breeding in this species up to 1975 and reported in the

Tursiops Breeding Workshop (Ridgway and Benirschke 1977) . 1 *0


6.49 Bryden has noted that 1 one of the major obstacles to

the detailed study of reproduction in dolphins has been the

difficulty of breeding them in captivity1. He quotes Sweeney,

(1977) as reporting 31 per cent of all Tursiops pregnancies in

captivity resulting in stillbirth with mortality rate of

survivors at 49 per cent in the first year. Most of these

mortalities occurred as a result of inadequate maternal care.

Bryden commented that 1 it is difficult to advise on optimal

husbandry practices likely to improve reproductive performance

in captive animals, because so little is known about the ecology

of dolphins in the ocean1 . He discussed the advisability of

having other dolphins of the same species present in the pool

and the optimum pool size for breeding. He concluded that 1 there

remain many more questions concerning reproduction in dolphins

than answers' but noted that work in reproduction needs to be

carried out on both captive and wild populations and pointed to

the important recent physiological studies at Sea World,

California which revealed 1 vital information about ovulation in


6.50 Lee considered that some recent breeding programmes in

the United States suggested that husbandry is available to

improve reproductive success in captivity.52 warneke wrote that

' it has been observed that once a colony of experienced breeding

animals is established, calving occurs regularly and survival of

the young appears to be assured' . He cited the examples of Sea

World, Florida and Sea World, San Diego, where loss owing to

stillbirth and infant mortality was less than eight per cent

between 1978 and 1982.53 Lee, using the same two examples,

pointed out that intervals between births were similar to those

estimated for natural populations.

6.51 It should be noted that there is a lack of information

on cetacean breeding and survival rates in the wild with which

to compare captive breeding programmes. However, a descriptive


and critical review of existing methods for estimating

reproductive parameters in wild dolphins and small whales is

provided by Perrin and Reilly (1984).54 The review includes

pregnancy rate, calving interval, gestation period, age and sex

structure and size and age at attainment of sexual maturity.

6.52 Statistics for births in Australian oceanaria are given

below. All were conceived in captivity.

Table 4: Births in Australian Oceanaria





African Lion 7 TursioDS sp. 24.11.80 24.11.80 Drowning Safari, NSW F Tursioos sp. 08.03.82 08.03.82 - Drowning M Tursioos sp. 15.11.83 30.12.83 5 wks Unknown

Marineland, M Tursioos t. 1980 5 ys

SA F Tursioos t. 1982 3 ys

Pet Porpoise F Tursioos t. Dec 1979 5 ys

Pool NSW 7 Tursioos t. 21.06.85 few mths

Sea World, ? Tursioos t. 20.05.73 7 Heart

Qld aneurysm

M Tursioos t. 29.12.76 -

7 Tursioos t. 5.07.76 11.04.83 7

7 Tursioos t. 21.11.78 13.05.83 Septic­

aemia & intest­ inal haemorr-


F Tursioos t. 8.03.80 F Tursioos t. 12.02.83 7 Tursioos t. 18.11.83 18.11.83 Stillborn

7 Tursioos t. 24.06.81 10.07.81 Liver In-





7.1 Critics have argued that the question of keeping

cetacea captive is essentially an ethical one which cannot be

resolved simply by weighing scientific evidence. Some people

have pointed out that public attitudes are undergoing a

fundamental change in relation to animals. Bossley believed


"... we are now on the verge of a revolution

in the area of moral philosophy relating to individual rights, be they the rights of

various disadvantaged humans such as

oppressed groups (e. g. , women, blacks, the disabled) or the rights of other species.'1

Project Jonah noted that:

'There is definitely a change taking place in people's feelings towards the other

inhabitants of this earth.'3

7.2 Many people concerned with animal welfare now question

whether humans are entitled to exploit animals and to act in a

manner which will cause animals to suffer.

7.3 Critics argue that oceanaria exploit cetacea primarily

for profit and that this is morally indefensible because it

causes suffering to cetacea who, as intelligent and complex

beings, are entitled to greater consideration by humans.3

7.4 They believe that arguments advanced by oceanaria, for

keeping cetacea captive, such as enrichment, awareness and

improved knowledge, are inconsistent with, and subordinate to,

their commercial motives. Carter has stated:


1U. S. dolphinaria interests, self described as an industry, have emphasised its money value and the number of persons employed. Such matter are anthropocentric. The

acquisition of cetacean specimens, bought or caught, represents significant financial investments as do the construction and

maintenance of dolphinaria facilities. The case is similar with safari parks and other captive animal display enterprises providing public entertainments.

Clearly then the nature and focus of commerce differs from that of conservation, science and education ... At present, allowing for

compromises, there will arise differences of priority; and where economic parameters are dominant those of conservation, science and education are likely to be hybridised.'4

7.5 However, proponents of oceanaria deny that keeping

cetacea is immoral and they argue that the recreation/

entertainment function of oceanaria is subordinate to their role

of raising public awareness and concern for conservation of the

species. The Animals on Display Workshop has stated: 1

1 Some people contend that it is morally wrong to remove animals from the wild and hold them in captivity, either because they believe that some animals have evolved sufficiently to acquire rights equivalent to those

recognized for human beings, or because they believe animals are severely harmed by life in captivity. These beliefs are not currently supported by sufficient scientific evidence. Consequently, they do not provide a factual basis for an overriding moral objection to displaying animals in captivity. Human beings have a special responsibility to preserve and respect animals as part of the natural

environment. Animals suffer when human action is indifferent to their pain and distress or when it causes irresponsible disruption of their habitat. Human beings, as a matter of moral obligation, owe compassion and humane

treatment to animals in captivity. Bringing animals into captivity alters their natural state. If captivity causes adverse effects,


these effects, on balance, are outweighed by such benefits as enhancement of human

appreciation for all animals, conservation of species, and advancement of knowledge.'5

7.6 Abel considered that displaying cetacea for recreation

is justified because it is necessary to encourage learning. He stated:

1 It is a recognised fact that people will not pay for merely an educational demonstration. They will however, pay for entertainment and accept all the educational experiences

provided. I feel I must emphasize again the fact that the dolphins are not "made to do

tricks" in providing the entertainment

requirements essential for attracting a large segment of the population to the facility in the first place.16

7.7 However, critics consider that even if oceanaria could

show that profit and recreation were not the primary motives of

oceanaria, the use of captive cetacea for education and research

is not only of dubious benefit but is also morally questionable.

7.8 Bossley argued that display based on the subordination

of cetacean to trainer, teaches only that humans have the right

to exploit cetacea, although he did not provide empirical

research to substantiate his argument.^

7.9 With regard to research Bossley considered that:

'... one does have to temper the pursuit of

scientific knowledge with certain moral considerations ... The justification of

obtaining scientific evidence is not a

sufficient reason these days necessarily to legitimate a practice.'8

Carter notes that Pilleri thought that in scientific research on

cetacea, an important ethical cost-benefit analysis needs to be

made.9 Jamieson and Regan concluded that although scientific


study may have many benefits which will accrue to the cetacea

themselves, the morality of these benefits depends 1 on the means

used to secure them. And no benefits are morally to be allowed

if they are obtained at the price of violating individual rights. Ί 0

7.10 Sir Sydney Frost, in his report on whales and whaling,

decided that any interference with cetacea required strong

justification on the grounds that it was either 1 essential or

unavoidable'. In considering whether humans should use cetacea,

he took into account the suffering that might occur as a result

of that use and the effect of the possible high intelligence of

cetacea on their propensity to suffer. He went on to recommend


1 the taking or killing of any cetacea -

whether intentionally for scientific, display or other purposes, or incidentally such as in fishing or shark netting operations - should be carefully scrutinised to ensure that it is either essential or unavoidable.'11

7.11 The Frost Report did not define 1 essential1 or

1 unavoidable'; nor did it consider separately the issue of

oceanaria and the ethics of keeping cetacea in captivity. The

whale Protection Act 1980, which was passed in direct response

to the Frost Report, currently sanctions the existence of

oceanaria, subject to certain conditions under Section 11 (1)

(a) of the Act.

7.12 In evidence to the Frost Inquiry, Singer stated:

'If a being is capable of suffering, any

suffering it might experience as a result of our actions must count in our ethical

deliberations irrespective of whether the being is a human or non-human animal.'12


7.13 That cetacea have the capacity to suffer is

unequivocal. As mammals they have 1 the nervous apparatus which

in human beings is known to mediate the sensation of pain'.13

7.14 The fact that cetacea undergo some suffering in

captivity is not of itself an overriding factor in determining

whether cetacea should be held in captivity. All animals,

including human beings, suffer to a varying extent in their

natural environment and it would be inconceivable for animals

not to suffer at times in captivity. Rather, it is the nature

and extent of suffering which should be taken into account in

deciding whether to keep particular species of animals in


7.15 Empirical data compiled overseas on effects of

captivity on cetacea have shown numerous cases of stress, high

mortality, reduced longevity and breeding problems. It is also

undeniable that cetacea suffer varying degrees of stress and

trauma during capture.

7.16 The Frost Report was inconclusive about the level of

cetacean intelligence and the extent to which this affected

suffering. After discussing the various views on cetacean

intelligence^4 it stated that:

1 on the neuro-ana tomical evidence, the Inquiry is unable to make the assumption of a potential for high intelligence in the whale. But we are persuaded by the evidence

submitted to us that the issue remains open and there is a real possibility that such a potential exists and that, accordingly, allowance for it should be made in man's

attitude to whales.

Certain whale species, particularly some dolphin species and the killer whale, give evidence of advanced behavioural activities. It is from these behavioural studies that

scientists have endeavoured to draw parallels for other whale species. Granted that many


assumptions have been made, nevertheless it is not unreasonable to conclude that cetacea give evidence of levels of behaviour that would seem to be associated with a level of

brain development and activity of some

sophistication. Ί 5

7.17 Assessments of cetacean intelligence have placed them

in a range of categories from chimpanzees and baboons to

domesticated animals such as dogs and pigs18 to land-based

mammals of high intelligence such as apes and humans. it was

contended that studies indicated a brain capacity of a five year

old human18 while others considered that the large brain was

merely an evolutionary response to an aquatic environment.19

Behavioural sophistication was, on one hand, argued as being a

reason for concluding that cetacea had a capacity for a high

level of suffering while, on the other hand, it was used to

argue for a greater degree of adaptability and therefore

suitability for captivity.

7.18 Short has commented that:

'... encephalization - the relative size of the brain in relation to the rest of the body - is a fundamental trait that is a direct

measure of an animal's information processing capacity, and hence is directly correlated with intelligence. The highest grades of encephalization are shared by humans,

dolphins and killer whales. Next comes the apes and monkeys, whose degree of

encephalization is twice that of "average" mammals like deer, or wolves, which are on a par with lemurs, and with crows.

Encephalization would seem to reflect a number of different intelligences, and indicate the animal's knowledge of reality in relation to the information received by the brain. The large size of the human brain can be attributed to our linguistic ability, which gives us a new dimension to reality. If we are genuinely concerned about minimizing

the pain and suffering of animals in

captivity, it would seem essential to take encephalization into account .. .'20


7.19 It has been pointed out to the Committee that captive

cetacea are entitled to special consideration not only because

of their possible high intelligence but also because of various

behavioural characteristics, such as their long distance

swimming, their sonar signals and their complicated social

interactions; characteristics which do not lend themselves to

confinement in a relatively small pool.

7.20 It has been inferred from these factors that the

reaction of cetacea to captivity would be similar to those of

humans. Thus, morally, the forcible separation of cetacea from

their families and their confinement for life requires the same

justification as this sort of action does in human situations.

There are, however, dangers in using anthropomorphic arguments

because different species do not necessarily respond to a

stimulus in the same way, irrespective of the level of


7.21 The Committee is unaware of any recent research that

throws more light on the nature and level of cetacean

intelligence than the research available to Sir Sydney Frost

during his inquiry. It agrees with the views expressed in the

Frost Report and, in view of the possibility that cetacea have a

high level of intelligence, they should be given the benefit in

decisions on their captivity. They should, therefore, not be

subjected to the possibility of deprivation or suffering which

conditions and quality of life in captivity might occasion.


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8.1 Proprietors of oceanaria have drawn attention to the

benefits of holding cetacea in captivity - both for humans and

for cetacea. For humans these benefits have been enjoyment and

increased understanding of cetacea and the natural world

generally. For the cetacea themselves oceanaria claim to have

contributed to their preservation and conservation by fostering

public awareness and by scientific study.

8.2 The Committee acknowledges the past contribution made

by oceanaria in raising awareness and advancing knowledge about

cetacea. It also acknowledges the role which has been performed

by oceanaria in conservation and preservation, both indirectly

by fostering interest and concern and, more directly, through

research and through rescue and rehabilitation of sick and

stranded animals.

8.3 An examination of some of the evidence has indicated to

the Committee, however, that cetacea in captivity have suffered

stress, behavioural abnormalities, high mortalities, decreased

longevity and breeding problems. While it notes that, in

Australia, the overall record for mortalities in oceanaria over

the last five years is better than for oceanaria overseas and

that a number of variables must be taken into account when

examining the evidence, the Committee is, nevertheless, of the

opinion that cetacea generally have paid a high price for the

dubious advantages of captivity.


8.4 Furthermore, the Committee points out that, with one

exception, Australian oceanaria have not made a substantial

contribution to cetacean conservation and preservation in the

sense that few of the major threats to cetacean welfare in the

wild has been addressed by oceanaria. Four of the seven

Australian oceanaria do not have research programmes.

8.5 With regard to their educational role, the Committee

notes that three Australian oceanaria have no educational

programme and that of the fourth is very limited. The greatest

emphasis, in the majority of oceanaria, has been on the

relationship of cetacean to trainer in the captive situation

and, in most cases, the display of cetacea has not attempted to

teach people about their natural habitat. Some cetacea are

trained to perform unnatural behaviours.

8.6 The Committee draws attention to the problems inherent

in the administration of the present system for the protection

of cetacea. Responsibility for cetacean protection and welfare

is divided between Federal and State Governments. However, only

Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia have drawn up

guidelines to be complied with by applicants under the

legislation. The national guidelines drawn up by ANPWS for

applicants under the Whale Protection Act are only used where

the application is made to capture cetacea from Commonwealth

waters. It is probably not possible to police the capture of

cetacea to ensure that it is done within the appropriate

jurisdiction. The Committee is of the opinion that the existing

ANPWS guidelines do not adequately specify educational and

research requirements for oceanaria. The problems of the present

system of licensing and regulating oceanaria in Australia are

exemplified by the differences in the establishment of the one

at Hamilton Island and the proposed one at Keysbor ough in



8.7 The Committee is of the opinion that evidence points to

the probability that cetacea are highly intelligent animals with

complex social behaviour. As the scientific community has not

yet reached a full understanding of the nature of the animal,

the Committee believes that it is important to give the animal

the benefit in considerations on its future in captivity,

especially where captivity has been shown to be mainly for the

purposes of entertainment in Australian oceanaria.

8.8 The Committee concludes that the benefits of oceanaria

in Australia for humans and cetacea are no longer sufficient to

justify the adverse effects of capture for captivity.

8.9 Therefore, the Committee RECOMMENDS that no further

facilities for keeping captive cetacea be permitted to be

established in Australia and that no further permits be issued

for the capture of cetacea in Australian Commonwealth or State

waters. It further RECOMMENDS that importation of cetacea from

overseas be banned.

8.10 The Committee also RECOMMENDS that existing oceanaria

be allowed to continue keeping cetacea for the time being but

that the keeping of cetacea should eventually be phased out

unless further research justifies their continuance.

8.11 Under the Commonwealth 'Guidelines for the Preparation

of Applications for Permits for Live Display, Scientific or

Educational Purposes 19821 , applicants for a permit for

scientific or educational purposes are required to submit much

more detailed information on scientific or educational projects

than applicants for a live display permit. This includes the

names and addresses of sponsors or co-operating institutions and

the scientists or educationalists involved, a copy of the formal

research proposal or contract and a statement of whether the

proposed research has broader signficance than the individual


researcher's requirements, or responds directly or indirectly to

recommendations of any national or international scientific body

charged with research or management of cetacea and, if so, how.

8.12 The Committee RECOMMENDS that existing oceanaria be

required to submit to more stringent assessments of educational

and research functions by supplying detailed information similar

to that required for applicants for scientific and educational

permits in current Commonwealth guidelines and to be able to

show that education and research constitute a significant

component of the oceanarium's activities.

8.13 In keeping with the accepted policy of presenting

animals in a manner which improves public awareness and

understanding of cetacea, the Committee RECOMMENDS that display

programmes in oceanaria be designed in such a way as to present

only natural forms of behaviour and the facility to approximate

more closely the cetacean's natural environment.

8.14 Only some States have guidelines, and national

guidelines for applicants under the Whale Protection Act are

only used where the application is made to capture cetacea from

Commonwealth waters.

8.15 The Committee RECOMMENDS that national standards for

the maintenance and care of captive cetacea be drawn up by the

ANPWS in consultation with the State Government authorities,

members of the captive cetacean industry and other people with

knowledge of cetacean welfare for use by authorities responsible

for captive cetacea in each State. The Committee further

RECOMMENDS that national standards include standards for

assessments of financial viability, natural display and

educational and research components of captive cetacean display

as well as covering all aspects of maintenance, handling and

care of captive cetacea. These standards would replace

guidelines for permit applications.


8.16 The Committee supports the proposal for a licensing

system for owners and managers of oceanaria in addition to the

existing provisions for licensing the oceanarium facility and

RECOMMENDS that such a system be implemented.

8.17 It is the Committee's view that some of the existing

oceanaria would not satisfy revised criteria for cetacean care

and facilities and for educational and research components of

cetacean display. The view was commonly expressed in evidence to

the Committee by both opponents and proponents! of oceanaria,

that these establishments should be made to upgrade their

captive cetacean facilities within a specified period or close

them down.

8.18 The Committee RECOMMENDS that authorities responsible

for captive cetacea in each State assess any oceanaria within

that State against the established national standards and, where

it is found that the captive cetacean facility is unable to

comply with these standards, a specified time be allocated for

improvements, and if, after this period, the facility is still

unable to comply with these standards, it be closed down.

8.19 The Committee recognises the time and staff constraints

of State authorities responsible for captive cetacea. It notes

that national bodies such as the ANPWS consult non-government

organisations and individuals in matters concerning cetacean

welfare. It notes also that representatives of oceanaria have

established an organisation for exchange of views, dissemination

of information and regulation of the industry.

8.20 The Committee RECOMMENDS that a national advisory body

be established comprising representatives from Federal and State

Government authorities, non-government organisations and

oceanaria, which would advise the Federal and State Governments

on matters relating to cetacea, both captive and in the wild and

to encourage and monitor research in this area.


8.21 The Committee, recognising the role played by some

oceanaria in the rescue and rehabilitation of sick and stranded

animals, RECOMMENDS that oceanaria continue this work provided

that it is directed towards returning the animals to their

natural environment, where possible, and that the cetacea are

not rescued with the ultimate intention of rehabilitating the

animal for the purposes of display and of circumventing the

directive that no more wild cetacea be captured.

G. GEORGES Chairman



Although I was not a member of the Committee when the

evidence on cetacea in captivity was taken, I have read the

evidence and agree with most of the Committee's findings.

However, I do not agree with the conclusions and

recommendations contained in paragraphs 8.8, 8.9 and 8.10, which

I prefer to read as follows:

Paragraph 8.8

My recommendation: deletion of the paragraph.

Basis for that opinion: I do not believe the evidence

is sufficient for that conclusion to be reached.

Paragraph 8.9

My recommendation:

The Committee recommends that no further permits be

issued for the capture of cetacea in Commonwealth or State

waters, unless there are adequate scientific or educational

reasons for so doing. It further recommends that importation of

cetacea from overseas be banned.

Paragraph 8.10

My recommendation:

The Committee recommends that existing oceanaria be

allowed to continue keeping cetacea, provided they meet the

strict guidelines and national standards proposed in this



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Chapter Two

1. Pilleri, G., 1 Cetaceans in Captivity1, Investigations on Cetacea. Vol. XV, 1983, p. 222 and p. 225. ..........

Defran, R. and Pryor, K. , 'The Behaviour and Training of Cetaceans in Captivity', in Herman, L., Cetacean Behaviour; Mechanisms and Functions. New York, Wiley, 1980,

pp. 319-321.

Reeves, R. and Leatherwood, S., 'Live-Capture Fisheries for Cetaceans in U.S. and Canadian Waters, 1973-1982', Paper submitted to the IWC Scientific Sub-Committee 1983, pp. 1-2.

2. Defran and Pryor, ibid.

3. Pilleri, op. cit.

4. Reeves and Leatherwood, op. cit.

5. Defran and Pryor, op. cit.

6. Cawthorn, M. and Gaskin, D . , 'Small Cetaceans Held in

Captivity in Australia and New Zealand'. Report of the IWC, Scientific Sub-Committee, 1984, p. [1],

7. Best. P. , 'Live Capture Fishery for Small Cetaceans in South African Waters'. Paper submitted to the IWC

Scientific Sub-Committee, 1983 p. [1].

8. Bigg, M. and Wolman, A., 'Live-capture Killer Whale

(Ornicus orcal Fishery, British Columbia and Washington, 1962-73', Paper submitted to the IWC Scientific

Sub-Committee, 1974, Journal of the Fisheries Research Board. Canada, Vol.32, No. 7, 1975, p. 1214.

9. Pilleri, op. cit.; K. Norris, to private meeting of the Committee, 3 October 1984, p. 5.

10. 'Whales Alive; Report of the Global Conference on the Non-Consumptive Utilization of Cetacean Resources', New England Aquarium, Boston, Massachusetts, 7-11 June 1983, p. 17-18.

11. 'Animals on Display: Educational and Scientific Impact'; Report of a Workshop, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, Illinois, 12-16 February 1984.

12. United Kingdom Department of the Environment, Press Notice, 6 June 1985.


Chapter Three

1. 1 Guidelines for the Maintenance Handling and Care of Live Cetaceans', ANPWS Draft, October 1984, p. 1.

2. 1 Guidelines for Techniques of Live Capture and Transport of Cetaceans', ANPWS Draft, October 1984, p. 3.

3. Submission 475 (R. Fuller) , p. 1.

4. Evidence, p. 3750.

5. Evidence, pp. 3756-3757.

6. Evidence, pp. 2800-2802.

7. Letter from the City of Spr ingvale to R. Abel, 4 May 1984 .

8. News Release, 24 October 1984.

9. Submission 324 (ANPWS), p. 4; Evidence, pp. 3742-3749.

Chapter Four

1. Submission 424 (R. Abel), p. 20.

2. Nishiwaki, M. and Tobayama, T . , 'Aquarium Activities on Small Cetaceans', pp. 1-2, Supplementary paper, Global Conference on the Non-Consumptive Utilisation of Cetacean Resources, Boston 6-11 June 1983. Conference Documents Vol. 1; Kasuya, T., Tobayama, T. and Matsui, S., 'Review of Live Capture of Small Cetaceans in Japan', Report of the IWC Scientific Sub-Committee, 1984.

3. 'Are Dolphins Crying Inside' , The Aae. 2 February 1985 , Sunday Extra, p. 3.

4. Bigg and Wolman, op. cit. , p. 1214.

5. Nelson, W., Evidence to the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service at the Public Hearing on a Marine Mammal Protection Act Permit Application by Sea World Inc., August 1983, p. 207.

6. Lipscomb, F. , 'Whales Alive in Education and Culture', p. 1, Core Paper, Global Conference Documents, Vol. 1, op. cit.

7 . n p w York Times Magazine. 10 September 1972 , quoted in

Current Biography, 1976, p. 99.

8. Defran and Pryor, op. cit. pp. 319-321.


9. Evidence , p. 2727 .

10. Howard, E., ed. , Pathobioloav of Marine Mammal Diseases. Vol. 2, Florida, CRC Press, 1983.

11. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit. , p. 10

12. Kelly, J. , 'The Value of Whale Watching',

Supplementary Paper, Global Conference Documents, op. cit.

P. 5,

Vol. 2,

13. Whales and Whalina Vol. I. Renort of the Tndenendent

Inquiry conducted by the Hon. Sir Sydney Frost, Canberra, AGPS, 1978, P. 191.

14. Evidence to the U.S. National Marine op. cit., p. 202. Fisheries Service,

15. Submission 241A, (Project Jonah), p. 35.

16. ibid., p. 36.

17. Spong, P. , 'Non-Consumptive Abuses of Supplementary Paper, Global Conference Cetaceans', p. Documents, Vol.

3, 2,

op. cit.

18. Project Jonah, Submission to the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service concerning the application by Marine World Victoria, 1984, p. 15.

19. ibid. , p. 16 .

20. Sea World publicity booklet, p. [21].

21. Jamieson, D. and Regan, T., 'Whales are not Cetacean

Resources', p. 10. Core Paper, Global Conference Documents, Vol. 1, op. cit.

22. Kelly, J. , The Value of Whale Watching, op. cit. , pp. 2-3.

23. Scheffer, V., Evidence to the U.S. National Marine

Fisheries Service, op. cit., p. 133.

24. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit. , p. 5.

25. Asper, C. et al., 'Census Up-Date: Marine Mammals in

Captivity in North America, 1983'. Abstract.

26. Watson, P. , Evidence to the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service, op. cit., p. 202.

27. Submission 476, (F. Smith), p. 5.

28. Evidence, p. 3593.


29. Submission, (Atlantis Marine Park), pp. 6-7.

30. Evidence, p. 2631.

31. S. Murphy, Personal Communication, 2 July 1985.

32. H. Goodall, Personal Communication, 2 July 1985.

33. Seaworld publicity booklet, p. [22]; Correspondence, 26 June 1985.

34. J. Fensham, Correspondence, 2 April 1985.

35. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit. , pp. 2-3.

36. Saayman, G. and Tayler, C. , 'The Socioecology of Humpback Dolphins (Sousa sp.), Winn, H. and Olla, B. , eds.,

Behaviour of Marine Animals. Vol. 3 : Cetaceans. New York, Plenum Press, 1979., p. 166.

37. Supplementary Submission 324, (ANPWS) , p. 19.

38. Goodall, H. , 'An Evaluation of the Displaying of Marine Mammals in an Artificial Environment - 1985', p. 7.

39. Kaza, S., 'Biophilic Values in Cetacean Education', p. 12, Supplementary Paper, Global Conference Documents, Vol. 2, op. cit.

40. Kelly, op. cit., p. 2.

41. ibid., p. 4.

42. Holt, S., 'Position on Dolphinaria', 1984 , p. 1.

43. Lipscomb, op. cit., p. 12, quoting Ager, S., 'The Big Business of Whales', San Jose Mercury News. 16 January 1983 .

44. Kaza, op cit., pp. 11-12.

45. Submission 241A, (Project Jonah), Appendix 1.

Chapter Five

1. Defran and Pryor, op. cit., p. 323.

2. Whales Alive; Report of the Preparatory Meeting,

Seychelles, 3-7 May 1983 for the Global Conference on the Non-Consumptive Utilization of Cetacean Resources, Amendments, p. 6.


3. McNamara, K. and Harwood, M. , 1 Non-Consumptive Utilization of Cetaceans - A Report on the Australian Situation', p, 5, Supplementary Paper, Global Conference Documents, Vol. 2, op. cit.

4. Lear, R. and Bryden, M., 1A Study of the Bottlenose Dolphin Tursiops truncatus in Eastern Australian Waters' ,

Occasional Paper No. 4, Canberra, ANPWS, 1980.

5. Project Jonah, Submission to the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, op. cit., p. 17.

6. C. Belford, Correspondence, 16 February 1985, p. 3.


8 .



1 1 .












Pilleri, op. cit. , p. 247 .

Saayman and Tayler, op. cit., pp. 165-166.

Holt, op. cit. , p. 1.

N. Rice, Correspondence, 14 February 1985 quoting Eglash, R., ' The Cybernetics of Cetacea', Investigations on Cetacea, Vol. XVI, 1984.

J. Ling, Correspondence, 7 February 1985.

Submission 424 (R. Abel), p. 20.

Klinowska, M. and Nicholson, J. , 'The Role of Sound and Vision Recordings in Investigation of Cetacean Behaviour in Captivity and in the Field', p. 1, Supplementary Paper,

Global Conference Documents, Vol. 2, op. cit.

Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit., p. 10.

S. Holt, Correspondence, 8 January 1985.

Bryden, M. , 'Dolphins in Captivity; A Scientist's p. 5.

New York, Friends of the Earth,

p. 12.

View' ,

1979 ,

Goodall, op. cit. ,

Evidence, p. 3621 .

Evidence, p. 2641 .

Evidence, p. 2643 .

Evidence, p. 3633 .


23. S. Murphy, Personal Communication, 21 July 1985 .

24. Evidence, p. 3764.

Chapter Six

1. Submission 241A (Project Jonah) , p. 6.

2. Holt, op. cit. , p. 1.

3. Bindley, M., 1 Psychological Aspects of Cetaceans in

Captivity', Whalewatcher . Winter 1984 , p. 5.

4. Pilleri, op. cit., p. 230.

5. Dawkins, M., Animal Suffering; The Science of Animal

Welfare, London, Chapman and Hall, 1980; United Kingdom, House of Commons, First Report from Agriculture Committee. Session 1980-81, London, HMSO, 1981.

6. Andersen, S., 1 Experiences with Harbour Porpoises, Phocoena phocoena. in Captivity: Mortality, Autopsy Findings and Influence of the Captive Environment1 , Journal of Aquatic Mammals. Vol. 6, No. 2, 1978, p. 47.

7. Lee, A., 1 Assessment of Public Submissions Made in Respect of the Application by Marine World Victoria Limited to Keep and Display Live Cetaceans', 1984, p. 1.

8. ibid. , p. 3 .

9. ibid.

10. Pilleri, op. cit., p. 231.

11. ibid., pp. 237-240.

12. Carter, N. , 'Effects of Psycho-Physiological Stress on Captive Dolphins', International Journal for the Study of


Animal Problems, Vol. 3, No. 3, d . 194.

Robson, F. , 'The Urgent Necessity for Further Study and Research into the Disastrous Effects of Psychophysiological Attributes to which Dolphins are Susceptible', unpublished paper, New Zealand, 1978.

14. Saayman and Tayler, op. cit. , p. 166.

15. Norris, K. and Dohl, T., 'Behavior of the Hawaiian Spinner Dolphin, Stenella___longirostris', Fisheries Bulletin. Vol. 77, No. 4 , 1982 , p. 821; Walker, W. , ' Review of the Live Capture Fishery for Small Cetaceans Taken in Southern


Californian Waters for Public Display, 1966-721, Journal of the Fisheries Research Board. Canada 32, pp. 1197-1211; Connor, R. and Norris, K., 1 Are Dolphins Reciprocal Altruists?1 The American Naturalist. Vol. 119, No. 3, 1982, pp. 358-374; Spong, P. , Statement on Behalf of Greenpeace,

U.S.A., The International Fund for Animal Welfare, The Animal Protection Institute and The Fund for Animals before the Sub-Committee on Fisheries and Wildlife Conservation

and the Environment of the House Merchant Marine and

Fisheries Committee concerning an amendment to the Marine Mammal Protection Act to prohibit capture of Orcinus orca (killer whale) for public display, 15 March 1984.

16. Walker, op. cit. ; Goldsberry, D. , Asper, E. and Cornell, L. , 1A Live Capture Technique for the Killer Whale Orcinus orca' . Journal of Aquatic Mammals Vol. 6, No. 3 , 1978, pp. 91-96; Hammond, D. and Leatherwood, S., 1 Cetaceans Live Captured for Ocean Park, Hong Kong, April 1974 through

February 1975, IWC Scientific Sub-Committee Paper; Hui, C. and Ridgway, S. , 1 Survivorship Patterns in Capture Killer Whales (Orcinus orca! ' , Bulletin of the Southern

Californian Academy of Science, Vol. 77, No. 2, 1978, pp. 45-51.

17. Greenwood, A., 'Clinical and Pathological Findings in Dolphins in 1977, Journal of Aquatic Mammals. Vol. 6, No. 2 , 197 8, pp. 33-3 8; Hui and Ridgway, op. cit.;

Goldsberry, Asper and Cornell, op. cit.; Hammond and Leatherwood, op. cit.; Carter citing Robson, op. cit.

18. Andersen, op. cit. ; Hammond and Leatherwood, op. cit. ; Walker, op. cit.; Gewalt, W . , 1 The Commerson's Dolphin (Ceohalorhvnchus Commersonii) ; Capture and First

Experiences', Aquatic Mammals. Vol. 7, No. 2, 1979, pp. 37-40.

19. Norris, K. , 'The Social Patterns of Domesticated Dolphins and the Importance of Husbandry and Training to their Wellbeing' , undated paper.

20. Andersen, op. cit. ; Walker, op. cit.; Bateson, G. ,

'Observations of a Cetacean Community', in McIntyre, J . , Mind in the Waters. Sausalito, California, Yella Belly Press, 1974 , pp. 146-165 ; Myers, W. , et al., 'The Role of Recorded Data in Acclimatizing a Harbour Porpoise (Phocoena phocosnal . Journal of Aquatic Mammals. Vol. 6, No. 2 , 1976 ,

pp. 54-64; Evidence, pp. 2648-9; Evidence, p. 2719; R. Abel to Springvale Council, Correspondence, 12 April 1984, pp. 10-11.

21. Defran and Pryor, op. cit. , p. 323 .


22. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit., p. 2.

23 . Norris and Dohl, op. cit., p. 821.

24. Norris, The Social op. cit., p. 2. Patterns of Domesticated Dolphins,

25. ibid., p. 3.

26 . Hui and Ridgway, op. cit., p. 50 •

27. For other overseas information on cetacean behaviour see also: Greenwood, A., 1 Stereotyped Behaviour Pattern in Dolphins', Journal of Aquatic Mammals Vol. 5 , 1977, pp. 15-17; McBride, A. and Hebb, D. , 'Behaviour of the Captive Bottle Nose Dolphin', Journal of Comparative Physiology and Psychology. 41, 1948, pp. 111-123; Winn, H. and 011a, B., 'Behaviour of Marine Mammals', Cetaceans. Vol. 3 New York, Plenum Press, 1979, pp. 165-226;

Jones, M. , 'History of Marine Mammals in Captivity with Notes on Their Longevity', 7th Annual Conference on

Biological Sonar and Diving Mammals, Stanford Research Institute, California, 1970; Brown, D. , et al.,

' Observations on the Behaviour of Wild and Captive False Killer Whales', Los Angeles City Museum Contributions to Science, Vol. 95 , 1966 , pp. 1-36; Bel' Kovich, V. and Krushinskaya, ' The Behaviour of Dolphins in Captivity',

Priroda, Vol. 5, pp. 18-28; Amundin, M., 'Occupational Therapy for Harbour Porpoises, Journal of Aquatic Mammals, Vol. 2, 1974, pp. 6-11; Saayman, G. , Tayler, C. and Bower, D., 'Diurnal Activity Cycles of Captive and Free-Ranging

Indian Ocean Bottlenose Dolphins' (Tursiops aduncus, Ehrenburg) , Behaviour, Vol. 44 , 1973 , pp. 212-233 .

28. Norris, op. cit., The Social Patterns of

p. 5.

Domesticated Dolphins,

29. Ridgway, S. , 'Captive Dolphin Brain Size', undated paper.

30. ibid.

31. R. Abel

1984, op. to Springvale Council, Correspondence cit. 12 April

32. Pilleri, on the

G., Gihr, M. and Kraus, C. Behaviour of Platap . , 'Further Observations indi in Captivity', Tpvpstigations on Cetacea. Vol. 3, 1971, p. 40.

33. Carter, op. cit. , p. 196.

34. Submission 476 (F. Smith) , p. 7.

35. Submission 475 (R. Fuller).


36. Gaskin, D. , 1 The True Dolphins: Delphinordea Delphinidae1. Whales. Dolphins and Seals. Auckland, Heinemann, 1972, pp. 123-138.

37. Gaskin, D., 1 The Great Dolphins: Delohinaidea

Globicephalidae1. ibid., pp. 115-122 .

38. Bigg, M. , 1 Assessment of Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) Stocks off Vancouver Island, British Columbia, IWC Report. Vol. 32, pp. 655-666. ’

39. Ridgway, S. , in Asper, E. and Cornell, L., 'Live Capture Statistics for the Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) 1961-76 in California, Washington and British Columba1. Journal of Aquatic Mammals. Vol. 5, 1977, pp. 21-26.

40. Spong, Statement on Behalf of Greenpeace, op. cit.

41. C. Belford, Correspondence, 16 February 1985, p. 2.

42. K. Norris, Correspondence, 15 January 1985, p. 3.

43. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit.

44. Filleri, G. , 'Animals on Display - Educational and

Scientific Impact, Comments on a Workshop held at the John G. Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, Illinois', Investigations on Cetacea. Vol. 16 , 1984, p. 12.

45. Submission 424 (R. Abel), p. 10.

46. Submission 241A (Project Jonah, Victoria) , p. 24.

47. Evidence, pp. 2124-2125.

48. Submission 424 (R. Abel) pp 10-11.

49. Lee, op. cit., p. 8.

50. Ridgway, S. and Benirschke, K. , 1977 in Cornell, L., Asper, C. and Duffield, D. , 1 Census Update: Captive Marine Mammals in North America1 , International Zoo Yearbook, 22 , 1982 , pp. 227-232.

51. Bryden, M. and Harrison, R. , 'Gonads and Reproduction', unpublished paper 1984.

52. Lee, op. cit., p. 8.

53. Warneke, R. , 'Report [to the Victorian Minister for Conservation Forests and Lands] on the Application by Marine World Victoria Limited, to Display Cetaceans at Sequana Marine Garden, Springvale, November 1984', p. 15.


54. Perrin, W. and Reilly, S. , 1 Reproductive Parameters of Dolphins and Small Whales of the Family Delphinidae1, IWC Report. Special Issue 6, 1984.

Chapter Seven

1. Bossley, M., 1 Benign Education and Cetaceans (The Whys and the Wherefores) ', p. 3, Supplementary Paper, Global Conference Documents, Vol. 2, op. cit.

2. Evidence, p. 2982.

3. Jamieson and Regan, op. cit. ; Submission 475 (R. Fuller); W. Doak, Correspondence, 10 January 19 85; Kaye, H. , 1 The Cute Cruelty of Dancing Dolphins' , Habitat. Vol. 12, No. 3, 1984, pp. 14-15.

4. Carter, N., 1 The Adam Syndrome: Some Behaviour Observations of Homo Sapiens in Relation to Captive Animals for Display in Particular Cetaceans', unpublished paper 1985, p. 7.

5. Animals on Display Workshop, op. cit. , p. 2.

6. R. Abel, to Springvale Council, Correspondence, 12 April 1984, p. 12.

7. Bossley, op. cit., p. 6.

8. Evidence, pp. 2619-2620.

9. Carter, The Adam Syndrome, op. cit. , p. 19.

10. Jamieson and Regan, op. cit. , p. 11.

11. Whales and Whaling, Vol. 1, op. cit. , p. 207.

12. ibid, p. 183.

13. ibid, p. 177.

14. ibid, pp. 147-171.

15. ibid, p. 171.

16. Supplementary submission 473, (Friends of Marine World) pp. 4-5.

17. Young, R. » ' Report [To the Victorian Minister for

. Conservation, Forests and Lands] on the Proposal by Marine World Victoria Ltd, To [Capture and] Display Live

Cetaceans', 1984, p. 8.


18. Doak, W. , Correspondence, 10 January 1985 .

19. Warneke, op. cit. , p. [14].

20. Short, R., 'Primate Ethics', unpublished paper 1985, p. 5.

Chapter Eight

1. Evidence, p. 2665 and p. 2731. I l l


·. , ■


• *. ■·,·â– 



Abel, Mr G . R. , Curator, International Oceanaria Development Co. Pty Ltd, Aspendale, Victoria Abel, Mr R., Managing Director, International Oceanaria Development Co. Pty Ltd, Aspendale, Victoria Anderson, Mr G.R.V., Principal Project Officer and Project

Coordinator, Whales & Marine Section, Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory Barber, Mr P.J., RSPCA Victoria, Burwood East, Victoria Bossley, Dr M.I., Glenunga, South Australia Bullen, Mr S.L., Managing Director, African Lion Safari,

Warragamba, New South Wales Cane, Mr A.R., Development/Technical Manager, International Oceanaria Development Co Pty Ltd, Aspendale, Victoria Dawbin, Dr W.H., Honorary Research Associate, Australian

Museum, Sydney, New South Wales Fordyce, Mrs J ., Secretary, Friends of Marine World, Seaford, Victoria Gee, Mr R.W., Acting Director, Australian Agricultural Health

and Quarantine Service, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory ·

Gregory, Mr A.I., President, Project Jonah, Sydney, New South Wales Hyne, Dr R.H.J., Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales Kaye, Mrs H., Honorary Director, Project Jonah Victoria,

Hawthorn, Victoria Kelty, Ms A., National Dolphin Coordinator, Greenpeace Australia, Adelaide, South Australia Lattimer, Mr S.C.J., Head Trainer, Mar ineland of South

Australia, West Beach, South Australia Little, Dr K.B., Veterinary Surgeon, Mar ineland of South Australia, West Beach, South Australia McEwen, Mr G.J., Chairperson, Australian Federation of Animal

Societies, Greensborough, Victoria Meischke, Dr H.R.C., Acting Principal Veterinary Officer, Australian Agricultural Health and Quarantine Service,

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory Mosley, Dr J.G., Director, Australian Conservation Foundation, Hawthorn, Victoria Porter, Mr R.H., General Manager, West Beach Trust, West Beach,

South Australia Richmond, Mr T. , Assistant Director, Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory Smith, Miss F., Pittwater, New South Wales Weir, Mr J.W., President, Friends of Marine World, Seaford,



Whadcoat, Mr J.H., Secretary, Lake Tyers Dolphin Protection Group, Lakes Entrance, Victoria Whiteside, Dr S.M., Vice President, Project Jonah Victoria, Hawthorn, Victoria Wirth, Dr H.J., President, RSPCA Victoria, Burwood East,





67 P ocoena P co , harbour porpoises, were collected from

Danish waters, 1962-76 mainly from nets and strandings, usually 1/2 —1 year old. Chlorinated water in a 1000 m3 tank was used from 1970. 50% of the animals were diseased or high risk. 23 died in the first month of captivity. Maximum longevity in captivity was 39 months. Anderson, op. cit.

huthe United Kingdom since the early 19705 there were 55 confirmed imports of T r ' s trun t 5. Of the 55, 23 were dead, 17 alive and 15 of status unknown. For the same period

4 orcgs were dead, 2 alive, 2 re—exported and 1 of status

unknown. The mean longevity in captivity of 11 dead Tuggiopg was 3.7 years and of 9 live Tuggiopg was 9.6 years. Arden-Clarke, C., 'A Review of Cetaceans in Captivity With Special Reference to Records to (sic) Delphinids in the United Kingdom', 1984.

tritish Columbia and Washington, 263 Qrciggs orcg were caught

between 1962 and 1973. 50 were kept for oceanaria and

exhibited in 8 countries. 12 died during capture and the remainder escaped or were released. Survival to the end of 2

years of 48 of the orcas kept in captivity was 75% in immature orcas and 13% in adults. 3 animals still alive after 7 years, 2 months have lived the longest in captivity. Bigg and Wolman, op. cit.

A survey was made of 6 major North American oceanaria holding orcas which had adequate facilities and standards of care. Since 1965, 30 orcas had been held. 3 collected were sick. 17 died in the period 1965 to 1978 of which 13 were females. The female mortality rate was slightly above 7% yearly for

females and 2.1% yearly for males. Ridgway, S. 'Reported Causes of Death of Captive Killer Whales (Qgcigug Q;cg)', o rn o W' d ' D's se , Vol. 15, January 1979,

pp. 99—104.

Ocean Park, Hong Kong, took between April 1974 and February 1982, 51 Tugsiopg c.f. T. gilli, 24 Tugsiopg c.f. T.

gdgncgs, 16 n d s ', Frasers dolphins, 10

P on c h a ctr , melon headed whales, 7 giggiggphglg

macroghynchgs, short finned pilot whales, 1 ore; and 1

St n o 'r tr' , long snouted spinner dolphin. Out of

110 animals, 8 remained alive, 12 were released and 8 were

transferred. 82 were dead. Most died from the chronic presence of P domo s d m '. Hammond and

Leatherwood, op. cit. '


21, or 12% of the established European captive population died in 1977. This was a reduction in loss of established animals since 1976, but there was considerable loss among newly captured specimens. 19 established Tursiops truncatus. bottlenose dolphins, died in 1977. Greenwood, Clinical and Pathological Findings in Dolphins in 1977, op. cit.

30 Cetacea were added to European captive stocks in 1978 including 29 Atlantic and Pacific bottlenose dolphins and one killer whale. 18% of the established European captive population died in 1978 , including 19 established Tursiops Truncatus. 3 established Tursiops ailli. 8 established Sotalia auianensis and 1 Orcinus orca. This estimated total of 31 animals was higher than previous years but was consistent for bottlenose dolphins. Greenwood, Clinical and Pathological Findings in Dolphins in 197 8, op. cit.

Captive orcas have an overall mortality rate of 4. 7% yearly. The female yearly mortality rate of 7% is significantly higher than for males. Larger females have a shorter captive life span than smaller females. A total of 50 orcas from Washington and British Columbian waters were placed in oceanaria around the world. The majority of exported whales died but the standards of care in these oceanaria were not known. Of 31 orcas kept in North American oceanaria between 1965 and 1975 under acceptable standards promulgated by the Marine Mammal Protection Act 1972 , 14 died. Hui and Ridgway, Survivorship Patterns in Captive Killer Whales, op. cit.

132 cetaceans were captured for public display during the period 1966 to 1972 by Marineland of the Pacific, California. Of the 22 Delphinus delohi. common dolphins none had survived by 1974. Only 15% survived the first year. Most mortality -75% occurred during the first 60 days. Maximum survival was 2 years 7 months. Of 51 Laaenorhynchus obiiauidons. Pacific white sided dolphins, 10 remained in 1974. 61% died in the first year, and 5% were lost in the first month. 5 of the 10 have lived in captivity over 8 years. Of 18 Tursiops sp. Pacific bottlenose dolphins, 5 remained alive in 1974. Mortality at the end of the first year was 50%. 5 of 33 Globicephala macrohvnchus. short finned pilot whales, were alive in 1974. Maximum longevity was 7 years. 35% mortality occurred within 30 days of capture. 8 Phocoenoides dalli. Dali' s porpoises were captured in 1972. 4 died during capture and transportation. 2 died in the first 60 days, one lived for 3 months and the last for 15 months. Walker, op. cit.

278 Tnr. qiops truncatus. Pacific and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins were in captivity in North America in 1979. Average longevity was 6. 1 years. 62% of the total had been alive in the 1976 census. 2 Pseudorca crassidens. false killer whales, had an average longevity of 7 years. 50% of the


total had been alive in the 1976 census. 2 4 orcas had an average longevity of 7.2 years. 58% of the total had been alive in the 1976 census. Of 283 Tursiops truncatus. 1976-1982, 39 had died or 14% of the total. Cornell, Asper and Duffield, op. cit.

Napier Marineland, New Zealand has taken 74 animals captive. 55, including 2 who had stranded, died, 12 were released, 2 were transferred and 1 subsequently died. 4 remain alive and 1 is of status unknown. 50% died within 4 months of capture and 73% within 2 years. All 4 Tursiops truncatus died. Of 26 Lagenorhyncus obscuris. 21 died. Of 38 Delphinus delphis. 25 died. All 4 Cephalorynchus hectori died. Greenpeace, New Zealand, 1984?

Of 21 dusky dolphins captured for display off Hout Bay, South Africa, between 1961 and 1978 only one survives. The longevity of the dusky dolphin in its natural state is estimated to be 25 - 30 years. Carter, op. cit.

Between 1966 and 197 8, Napier Mar inelands, New Zealand, had a capture mortality of 68 dolphins not including those which died during capture or transportation. Carter, op. cit.

Since November 1981, 122 orcas have been captured throughout the world for display purposes. At January 1984, 72 were dead, nine had been released, four had escaped and 37 were still alive. Between 1980 and 1983, 26 orcas were captured. At

January 1984, eight were dead, 16 alive and two had escaped. Submission 241B (Project Jonah).

In Europe, of 172 animals, 64 are still alive, 54 are dead, 22 have been released and 32 are status unknown. Submission 457 (Greenpeace).


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