The captivity industry often claims that keeping cetaceans in tanks is important as a means to educate the public. DFE disagrees with that and we have a whole section about our position. Additionally, the captivity industry often claims that the tricks the cetaceans are made to do during shows are ‘natural behaviours’.
Additionally, the captivity industry often claims that the tricks the cetaceans are made to do during shows are ‘natural behaviours’. It is worth keeping in mind that although some of the tricks that you may see are modified from what you might expect to see in the wild, in the ocean the animals do not have to perform them in return for food. Also, in no instance do cetaceans shoot people into the air, twirl hoola-hoops around their rostrum, slide along concrete platforms, jump through hoops, spin around on their sides out on the concrete, tow boats with children in them, do ‘tango-dances’ or ‘moon-walk’ dances, balance balls on their rostrums, ‘kiss’ people with their rostrums, swim with balls between their pectoral fins, hit balls suspended in the air, have people stand on their backs to ‘surf’, push people into the air in ‘rocket-hops’, or perform to loud music for food.
Keep in mind that no cetacean show is conducted without food, which tells you a lot about the motivation of the animals – if no food was present they wouldn’t be doing all the tricks.