Thank Aquarium for Banning Breeding of Captive Whales and Dolphins


Target: Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation Chair, Aaron Jasper

Goal: Thank board for banning breeding of captive whales and dolphins

A bylaw has been introduced banning the breeding of captive beluga whales and dolphins at the Vancouver Aquarium. The Vancouver Park Board voted unanimously to introduce this forward thinking bylaw. The courageous decision will keep future animals out of tiny tanks at the aquarium and prevent them from living a life of torture.

If an animal in question is in danger of extinction, there may be an exception to the ban. While the ban prohibits the aquarium from breeding these captive animals, it does not prevent bred or rescued animals from other aquariums from being transferred to Vancouver. Along with the ban, the Board is set to conduct a study determining whether maintaining the well being of whales and dolphins is even possible in captivity.

The recent voting by the board seems to lean in favor of the full ban on marine mammal displays that has been in discussion in Vancouver. The mayor of Vancouver is in full support of banning all marine mammal displays at the Vancouver aquarium. Park Board Chair Aaron Jasper has stated that there is nothing natural about having whales in captivity. “They’re in a tank. It’s not natural. …It’s a necessary evil to have these whales in captivity.” Hopefully the voting and future study will show that marine animals don’t belong in tanks, but in the oceans, prompting further protective action.

Vancouver aquarium’s president is not happy about the decision, claiming that the animals are necessary to educate the public. There are of course plenty of other ways to educate the public without putting an animal in distress. Activists hoped the ban would be pushed even further to end captivity of marine mammals in the Vancouver aquarium for good. While neither side seems happy with the decision, banning further breeding at the aquarium is taking a step towards change.


Dear Mr. Aaron Jasper,

Thank you and the Board for showing your support to marine animals in Vancouver. Banning the breeding of captive whales and dolphins will prevent young marine mammals from suffering in captivity in the future.

By doing this you are also showing your compassion towards marine mammals all over the world. It is known that whales and dolphins do not belong in confinement, as it is stressful and detrimental to their health as well as physical and emotional well-being. Thank you for making the right decision and supporting the ethical treatment of these animals. I hope that you’ll continue to support the rights of animals in your city.

Thank you for your time and consideration.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: OpenCage via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Valerie Nordberg says:

    Did I do the right thing by signing this? Will this encourage the thought that while it’s better to leave the animals in the wild, it’s O.K to buy new exhibits from other sources that suffer no qualms about capture from the sea?

  2. Kathy Williams says:

    My thoughts exactly! I think the best possible way to avoid exploitation is to abolish any and all profit-motivated venues displaying wildlife. If they are truly concerned about the conservation of a species, they should concentrate their resources on rescuing and – whenever possible -rehabilitating injured and orphaned members. If individuals cannot be returned to their natural habitat, all efforts should be made to provide life-long care for that individual. This should include: a variety of their natural foods; an appropriate, species specific environment which simulates – to the greatest extent possible – their normal living conditions in the wild; and, whenever possible, the compatible companionship of a fellow, rescued member.

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