I’m pretty sure many have seen this video already, but I feel the need to share it here.
This one is just adorable.
While I don’t believe we should be getting anymore animals from the wild, we have a responsibility towards those who are still under our care. Releasing this captive born animals to the wild would lead to a greater tragedy. Sadly, that was the case for Keiko, who after filming Free Willy, everyone went ahead and wanted him back in the ocean… when they didn’t understand that these are social creatures with hunting skills that take years to teach from one orca to the other. He was brought as a baby, and spent most of his life with his trainers and the crowd who cheered on him. On the ocean Keiko looked after human company because that’s what all he knew and because the other orcas wouldn’t let him stay in to their group. I’m guessing they just spoke different “languages” then. He died sick of pneumonia and starving and I really don’t wish that to repeat with any other of these gorgeous animals.
I’ll quote an old article
The “Into the Blue” and “Flipper” releases, as documented on film by the BBC and National Geographic respectively, show interesting parallels. In both cases the dolphins involved hesitated to leave their enclosures for open water and when they did, their first action was to go to nearby humans in the water or on boats. Such responses were certainly not indicative of animals that were seeking the “freedom” of open sea. That leads one to wonder whether if, as it suggests, the animals were not adequately prepared to return to the wild? Was the end result nothing more than to replace one form of captivity with another, physical confinement with behavioral limitations?
The Navy Technical Report (Brill and Friedl, 1993) is not the only statement of concern over returning dolphins to the wild. The report prepared for Canada’s Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (Anon., 1992) recognizes that research is necessary to find solutions to potential problems prior to attempting the return of marine mammals. That report concludes that the current state of knowledge is such that “the release to the wild of cetaceans that have been in captivity for extended periods is inappropriate.” The professionals involved in the care of marine mammals in public display and research facilities assume that the activists who would have us put our dolphins back into the wild would also like to see them survive
Again, not everyone is ready to live in the wild and some just will never be. Hey, at least we can be happy Japan stopped their whale hunting season for the moment. We have Taiji left. :P