Help end marine park suffering.

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Help spare sea animals from suffering in captivity

A life of confinement deprives animals of exploring and interacting with their rich natural environment, and denies them the freedom to express their natural behaviours.

A family pointing at an Orca confined inside an aquarium tank.
Credit: We Animals Media

Help spare sea animals from suffering in captivity

A life of confinement deprives animals of exploring and interacting with their rich natural environment, and denies them the freedom to express their natural behaviours.

“I pledge to help end the cruel confinement of marine animals by committing to never attend a marine park or aquarium where animals are forced to live in captivity.”

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Animals Australia

Animals Australia team

Last updated 30 November 2020

Imagine being taken from your family and kept in a tiny, barren room — for the rest of your life. Why? So you could be put on display for ‘entertainment’, and even made to perform. This is a reflection of the sad experience of many animals kept captive in marine parks and aquariums in Australia, and around the world.

Dolphins and seals forced to perform unnatural ‘tricks’… Sharks made to swim in endless circles in crowded tanks… Baby orca calves separated from their distressed mothers and sold to other marine parks. Sadly, animals in marine parks never have the freedom to express the full range of their natural behaviours.

There are many tragic stories from marine parks of family-oriented animals like orcas and dolphins being separated and sent to different parks. The eye-opening documentary Blackfish has exposed the suffering that mother orcas — who would usually spend their whole life with their calf — experience when separated from their babies.

The strong desire to maintain a family unit is not the only thing taken away from animals in captivity. Dolphins, sharks, seals and other animals are all kept in tanks that significantly limit their freedoms to explore, hunt, forage, and socialise the way they would in the wild. Orcas are highly active, and in the wild, they can swim more than 100 kilometres a day. Yet in marine parks, they will live their whole lives in small tanks.

Not surprisingly, these animals can suffer stress, depression and other mental health issues as a result. SeaWorld in the US has even admitted to drugging their whales with anti-anxiety medication.

This image contains content which some may find confronting

A dolphin and calf jumping out of the sea together.
Without the freedom to express all of their natural behaviours, animals in captivity are deprived of a life worth living - for entertainment industry profits.

While there are no orcas in captivity in Australia, other marine animals at SeaWorld (Australia) and other marine parks and aquariums across the country, are being forced to live in environments that cannot offer them the full, enriched life they deserve.

By choosing not to attend parks where animals are kept in captivity, you can help to shape a future where animals are seen for the sensitive and social individuals that they are.


What else can you do to help marine animals?

This pledge plays a vital role — but you can have an even greater impact for animals today. Here’s how:

  • Discover more about sea animals through eye-opening marine life documentaries here.
  • Share information about marine parks and aquariums with friends and family, to encourage kinder entertainment choices such as visiting sanctuaries or seeing animals in their natural environments.
  • Fill your plate with food that is kinder to sea animals. From ‘fish and chips’ to ‘crabcakes’, you can still enjoy the classics with an animal-friendly twist — check out our favourite ocean-inspired dishes. You can also order your free Veg Starter Kit here for all the information needed to explore tasty food that is kinder to animals and the planet.