UPDATE: Activists Say "Shut Marineland Down!"
Zoocheck Canada is calling on the federal and provincial governments to step in and shut down Marineland following a Toronto Star report about unhealthy conditions at the facility that has led to serious illness in some of the marine animals, including blindness.
“We’ve been monitoring MarineLand for some 25 years and bringing these issues to various government agencies and there has been no political will to deal with it. We’ve raised the issue numerous times via the media. We’ve attempted to get a ban on the import and export of wild-cetaceans and trade within Canada because we knew this situation has been ongoing for the longest time. “said Julie Woodyer, Campaigns Director for Zoocheck Canada.
Woodyer says the province and the federal government “keep passing the buck” onto one another leaving the animals unprotected.
Right now there are no government regulations for sea mammal captivity in Canada, but MarineLand has been licensed by the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums (CAZA). CAZA is a self-regulating, non-profit association that “is the national voice of the zoo and aquarium community in Canada” according to the website.
However Woodyer says this organization is not the voice of the animals.
“They are set up to protect the industry, not for animal welfare.”said Woodyer. Julie Woodyer says despite numerous complaints and reports about the unsafe and unhealthy conditions at MarineLand, CAZA continues to “rubber stamp” the facility’s accreditation.
“There’s no question in my mind that MarineLand needs to be shut down, it should have been shut down years ago.”