Stop Electrocuting Dolphins


Target: President Thein Sein, President of Myanmar

Goal: Crack down on the illegal practice of “electro-fishing,” which has been harming fish and dolphins in Myanmar waters.

The new and illegal form of fishing called “electro-fishing,” which some fishermen in Myanmar use, depletes the fish supply and also harms dolphins as an unintended consequence. Electro-fishing is the method of using electrical currents in the water to stun fish, while fishermen collect copious amounts of the stunned fish with their nets. This method depletes fish, which is the main source of food for dolphins, and sometimes this method even directly results in the deaths of dolphins. If something is not done about this destructive fishing method, the fish populations will become critically low and dolphins of the affected areas of Myanmar will become extinct.

The Irrawaddy River, which is Myanmar’s largest and most commercially important river, is most affected by the electro-fishing method. The dolphin species that inhabits this main river, the Irrawaddy dolphins, is currently critically endangered in Myanmar. Over the years, the number of these dolphins dropped rapidly and now there are no more than 60 individuals in Myanmar.

The traditional fishermen of the Irrawaddy River have been working cooperatively with the dolphins for generations. The fishermen use a special whistle to signal the dolphins and the dolphins help round up fish for the fishermen to catch. This cooperative method generally increased the fishermen’s catch by nearly six times what they would catch without the dolphins’ help, and the dolphins consume any fish that escape from the fishermen’s nets. The electro-fishermen have also been using the dolphins to round up fish to stun, and the dolphins are also harmed by the shocks. This has made the dolphins wary of helping any fishermen.

Electro-fishing boats were introduced to Myanmar about ten years ago. Although the practice is illegal, and perpetrators may face three-year prison sentences and fines, electro-fishermen are not deterred from continuing their destruction of the water ecosystem.

Please sign the petition below to urge the president of Myanmar to crack down on the illegal electro-fishing practice and to monitor the fishing activities on the Irrawaddy River more closely. The Irrawaddy dolphins will not survive if this destructive fishing practice continues unhindered, and the long-cherished cooperative spirit between the traditional fishermen and dolphins will continue to deteriorate if nothing is done.


Dear President Thein Sein,

The Irrawaddy dolphins in Myanmar have been living peacefully and cooperatively with the fishermen of the Irrawaddy River for generations. However, the new and illegal practice of “electro-fishing” is starting to sever this close bond between the fishermen and dolphins, and has in effect harmed both sides. The traditional fishermen’s livelihoods are affected by the diminishing fish supply, and the dolphins are often harmed by the underwater shocks and are finding it difficult to find abundant food sources.

Please enforce stringent laws to ban the illegal electro-fishing method. The current punishments for electro-fishing perpetrators are clearly not enough to deter the fishermen from continuing this practice. The survival of the Irrawaddy dolphins is in your hands.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Stefan Brending via Wikimedia Commons

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  1. Alexandre Engelen says:

    Stop the killing of these dolphins smarter than the destructive man of Myanmar … to find out too late that overfishing leads to starvation!

  2. For God’s sake protect these magnificent animals before it’s too late !!!!

  3. Dolphins would never intentionally do anything to harm people; in fact, dolphins have been know to save lives. So why aren’t we affording them the same compassion ?!?!

  4. Leanne Madsen says:

    I think fishing is ok,but not this way.Dolphins and turtle are beautiful part of the world.I don’t electrocuting Dolphins should be used in any part of fishing.

  5. Stop killing innocent dolphins now

  6. Doris Williams says:

    Stop killing dolphins

  7. jane young says:

    What fun is that surely TRUE FISHERMEN would not do this

  8. Despina M. Andrelus says:

    “A righteous man regards the life of animals.” – PROVERBS 12:10; “If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion & pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.” – ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI; “Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.” – MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.; “I hope to make people realize how totally helpless animals are, how dependent on us, trusting as a child must that we will be kind and take care of their needs… (They) are an obligation put on us, a responsibility we have no rights to neglect, nor to violate by cruelty….” – JAMES HARRIOT; “The greatness of a nation & its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated… I hold that the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection of man from the cruelty of man.” – MAHATMA GANDHI

  9. “The oceanographer Sylvia Earle says, “I wouldn’t deliberately eat a grouper any more than I’d eat a cocker spaniel.” Fish, she explains, “are sensitive, they have personalities; they hurt when they’re wounded.” The German neuroscientist Stefan Shuster agrees, saying that, “people don’t expect much from fish but that’s where they’re wrong.” “Fish,” he claims, “are capable of much more than people think.” The renowned fish biologist Victoria Braithwaite told a reporter, “We’re concerned about the welfare of chickens, pigs, and cows on farms. Why not fish?” Her recent book, Do Fish Feels Pain? answers that question with clear implications for those who think eating fish doesn’t come with ethical baggage.” – See more at:

  10. I hope all these fishermen starve for what they’re doing. THAT would be equal justice for their crimes against fish and other mammals.

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