Demand Freedom for Orcas Trapped in Russian “Whale Jail”

Target: Sergey Donskoy, Russian Minister of Natural Resources and Environment

Goal: End Russia’s illegal whale capture and export industry known as the “whale jail.”

Hundreds of whales are illegally being kept prisoner off Russia’s far eastern coast. Near the city of Vladivostok, reports are emerging that detail an industry of orca and beluga whale smuggling. According to news agency RIA Novosti, 11 orcas and several beluga whales were found confined in the most recent example of what has been dubbed a “whale jail.” Although whale hunting and capture in that region is strictly controlled by the Russian government’s environmental regulations, photographs featuring whales being forced into cages have gone viral on Russian websites. Details are still emerging, but Russian animal rights groups claim there has been coordinated pushback against the spread of evidence pointing to the whale capture. Where this resistance comes from is still yet to be seen.

Oceanarium, Afalina, Bely Kit and Sochi Dolphinarium are four major Russian firms with alleged ties to the illegal whale smuggling. According to Russian animal rights activists, these firms are suspected to participate in an international whale trafficking ring that transports stolen orcas and beluga whales from “whale jails” on the far east coast to unscrupulous aquariums in China and Southeast Asia. Whether or not these particular sea life corporations are involved in these heinous acts of animal capture, Russian businesses have an international reputation that casts suspicion on mysterious crimes like this and the shoddy early attempt to cover them up. Until the organizations responsible are brought to justice, the Russian government must prioritize ending the whale smuggling trade and freeing all incarcerated cetaceans.

Please sign this petition to demand an end to whale capture and smuggling.


Dear Mr. Donskoy,

Unregulated whale hunting is illegal in your nation, but animal rights activists estimate that hundreds of whales are still being captured on the far eastern coast and smuggled out of the country. Recently, RIA Novosti reported that 11 orcas and several beluga whales have been found trapped near the city of Vladivostok in aquatic cages popularly described as “whale jails.” The smugglers’ identities have been withheld from the media, and some activists have claimed that a third party is attempting to stop the circulation of the photo evidence of this and other whale smuggling centers.

The Russian media and animal rights activists describe a theoretical trafficking racket whereby whales are captured along the far eastern coast and then smuggled, allegedly through established sea life firms like Oceanarium and Sochi Dophinarium, out of the country where they are eventually sold to criminal aquariums in China and Southeast Asia. No matter who is responsible for these crimes, the natural heritage of the Russian environment is at risk. It is your responsibility as the Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment to protect Russia’s cetacean population and bring justice to those would would steal and sell them. Please investigate whale smuggling along your nation’s far east coast and close the “whale jails.”


[Your Name Here]


  1. And…. it’s ‘the usual suspects’ again…. ‘china’… ‘east asia’…. ???? Why are they always in the wrong when it comes to animals? Their mind-set as a nation and an entire culture needs to change 🙁

  2. Tania connor says:

    Utterly disturbing . Free the forces NOW . All eyes are on you Russia.

  3. Maria Bertrand says:

    Disgusting beyond any words. Why are you putting pain into the world? Russia do the right thing for animals or it will come back to BITE.


  5. The usual suspects again. Russia you criminals should be ashamed of yourselves and must release these orca and belugas to their families immediately, and as for anything for a $ China, as you have proven time and time again – YOU ARE THE SCUM OF THE EARTH!!

  6. Russia set an example to the world–you one of the super-power–then show that you don’t stand for animal abuse and free all those whales…THANK YOU

  7. Do you wish to be known as MONSTERS or do you wish to be known as HEROES? MAKE THE RIGHT CHOICE BY FREEING THOSE INNOCENT AND MAGNIFICENT WHALES!!!

  8. This is horrible!! Humans are so vile and evil to innocent animals. Let these poor whales go!

  9. Scott martinez says:

    We need to take down the 4 lower snake river dams to save the 72 orcas that are slowly dying in puget sound. They have no chinook salmon to eat. As they starve, their bodies begin to burn fat reserves for energy, releasing toxins like pcbs that weaken their immune system.

  10. This is truly an evil thing, but ranking right up on the evil, money for me level, is our country’s OK to hunting species to extinction in Africa. We need to change all of it!

  11. What a surprise Russia and China – cohorts. Why is it that so much animal welfare abuse happens in China.
    Corrupted countries with corrupted minds.

  12. Denise Devereux says:

    God’s Wraith on Monsters that do not respect God’s Creatures Great and Small.

  13. Russia, do the right thing and free these imprisoned suffering whales. And Asia, stop exploiting and hurting animals. You are a disgrace to the world!

  14. Thank you to the people that brought this issue to the world!
    May God have no mercy with them!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


20759 Signatures

  • Paula Lambert
  • Manuela Lopez
  • Christene Bringard
  • Barbra Doherty
  • Marianne Mancini
  • Helen Stephens
  • Kelly G
  • Monique Battoue-Delporte
  • Priscila Sosa
  • Tara Reinhart
1 of 2076123...2076
Skip to toolbar