VIDEO: See dolphins repeatedly netted and crated for travelling circuses

01 March 2017


A post shared by Animals Asia (@animalsasia) on Feb 28, 2017 at 8:18pm PST


Indonesian airline is accused of cruelty as shocking footage shows dolphins performing in a tiny pool before being netted, crated and put on a plane.

For these long-suffering mammals in Indonesia, this hell repeats again and again as part of their lives with travelling circuses.

Tomorrow another tiny pool, more loud music, screaming people and the need to do tricks for food. Then the nets will reappear, another tiny box, and back on a Sriwijawa Air flight.

Animals Asia’s Animal Welfare Director, Dave Neale said:

“Local airline Sriwijawa Air has been filmed loading a live dolphin for a travelling circus onto their plane.  We know they are complicit in this cruelty. Their actions allow it to continue and as a result, around 70 dolphins in Indonesia’s three travelling circuses endure this fate. We must ask the airline to end the suffering.”

In just under two weeks, nearly 20,000 people have added their names to Animals Asia’s petition.

Animals Asia Founder and CEO, Jill Robinson MBE said:

“How anyone can think it is acceptable to treat dolphins in this way is beyond comprehension. To see how small the pool is where they perform, but then realise this is as good as it gets for these poor animals, is heart-breaking.

“We are calling on Sriwijawa Air to end this. It is in their hands to make it stop. We say to them: ‘look what you are a part of, and understand that this hurts your brand. Thousands will never use your airline while you facilitate such abhorrent animal cruelty’.”

This footage was taken by Dolphin Project, who work alongside Animals Asia’s partner organisation Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN), and Indonesian NGO, Scorpion Foundation.

In the wild, dolphins can expect to live up to 50 years, while those in the circus don't survive anything like that long. JAAN and the Dolphin Project suspect the dolphins are dying perhaps as young as five years old as it is known they are being regularly replaced.

The stress of performance and travel, the captivity, the lack of social relationships and natural behaviours, the unsuitable pool water and the noise of crowds will ultimately kill this highly complex mammal.

Despite the obvious cruelty of transporting a dolphin by plane for a travelling circus, neither the airline nor the circus has broken any Indonesian laws.

In 2013, pressure from JAAN, supported by the Asia for Animals coalition, of which Animals Asia is a member, resulted in a promise to end the practice by then Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan.

However, in the years since, not a single dolphin has been confiscated. This is despite facilities being available to rehabilitate and release them back into the wild.

This cruelty can only continue with the participation of the airline. Stand with us and call on Sriwijaya Air to end its appalling business agreement with an industry built on suffering.


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