Families Ripped Apart: Anti–Marine Park Message Arrives on Seaworld Drive

Posted on by PETA Australia

During the Easter school holidays, families visiting the Gold Coast will be met with a haunting ode to the female marine mammals in abusement parks who are forcibly impregnated and then separated from their beloved offspring. Bus stop billboards – including one on Seaworld Drive – feature reality TV star Charlotte Crosby and her baby daughter, Alba, both dressed to resemble dolphins, being torn apart from each other while floating in dark water.

Sea World on the Gold Coast is notorious for its lack of transparency – little is known about the approximately 60 bottlenose dolphins listed on the website Ceta-Base as having died at the park. In the open ocean, dolphins swim many kilometres a day alongside their families and communicate over vast distances by unique dialects of pulsed calls, whistles, and clicks that are passed down from generation to generation. In marine parks, they languish in pools filled with chemically treated water. They never get to dive deep, feel the ocean currents, or choose what to eat.

While shooting the PETA ad, Crosby shared the story of an abused mother, Morgan, an orca born in the wild who has been forced to perform tricks for the past 12 years at the notorious Loro Parque in Tenerife, Spain. “The story of Morgan and Ula shatters my heart as a mam,” says Crosby. “It’s actually devastating to even think about.” She goes on to explain that, in addition to having no bodily autonomy and often being denied the chance to care for their young, animals held at marine parks endure lives of intense deprivation. “Knowing what these animals go through … they have no freedom. They are deprived of everything,” Crosby says. “They are living in the most awful, awful circumstances and conditions. It’s just cruelty to animals. That is all it is.”

Dolphins are wild animals, not performers, but at Sea World in Queensland, they’re confined to cramped, unnatural enclosures and their intelligence is exploited in shows for human entertainment. Please join us in urging the Queensland government to stop dolphin breeding and ensure captive dolphins are retired at a sea sanctuary.