NASA: Denounce Abusive Experiment Involving Dolphin in Sexual Relationship with Human Handler

Target: Jim Bridenstine, Administrator of NASA

Goal: Condemn 1960s dolphin experiment that included a woman sexually abusing a dolphin.

NASA ran an experiment in the 1960s that resulted in a woman having a sexually explicit relationship with a dolphin that was kept in isolation. The dolphin eventually died as a result of the experiment. The story of the NASA experiment has resurfaced after Twitter account @UberFacts recently tweeted about the details of it: “In the 1960s, a dolphin named Peter fell in love with a human. He died of a broken heart a few weeks later, when the relationship didn’t work.”

This romanticized version of events does not reveal that Peter was kept in isolation while his handler, Margaret Howe, attempted to teach the dolphin to speak English through his blowhole. Peter was a young dolphin removed from the wild, coming into his adulthood in isolation. Howe, who was also in isolation with the dolphin, noted in her experimental diaries that “Peter has become sexually aroused several times during the week.” She went on to describe the explicit nature of her interactions with the dolphin, saying: “I find that his desires are hindering our relationship. He jams himself again and again against my legs, circles around me, is inclined to nibble and is generally so excited he cannot control his attitude around me.” In a documentary about the experiment, Howe explains how she would masturbate the dolphin allegedly to keep him focused, claiming that he would otherwise not pay attention to his lessons.

When the experiment was terminated, Peter was brought out of isolation and into a lab where his health deteriorated. A few weeks later, Peter died and a staff veterinarian ruled the death a suicide.

Sign this petition to urge NASA to speak out and condemn this experiment, especially as it is being rehashed and repopularized on the internet.


Dear Administrator Bridenstine,

Humans have reached a point of extreme scientific prowess, but with this power it is paramount that we treat the environment and other organisms in it with the respect that they deserve. In the 1960s, a NASA experiment failed to consider the health and wellbeing of a dolphin. Instead, animal abuse was rationalized in the name of scientific achievement.

Not only was Peter, the dolphin, kept in isolation, but he was also subjected to sexual advances by his human handler. His health deteriorated and he died as a result of these experiments. As this experiment is rehashed online, I urge you to speak out against this type of animal abuse by NASA. Such cruelty should not be tolerated and should never resurface.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: William Warby



  1. sylvia vegas says:

    We are living in an age of incredible degeneration – the end of the world is very near

  2. Gabriela Torres says:

    How sick, incredile!

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