Shackled and chained “dolphin prisoners” took to the streets outside Jet2holidays’ office in Leeds with signs reading, “Jet2holidays: Stop Supporting Dolphin Prisons” and “Jet2holidays: Drop Marine Abusement Parks”.
The action is part of PETA’s efforts to urge the travel provider to drop marine parks that keep cetaceans in captivity from its holiday packages before the board meets to discuss the matter at the end of September.
The Cruelty Behind Cetacean Captivity
In the open ocean, bottlenose dolphins swim up to 60 miles a day alongside their families and can reach depths of over 450 metres. In marine parks, they’re confined to cramped concrete tanks filled with chemically treated water.
Females are commonly sexually abused via artificial insemination, sometimes after being drugged, so their babies can be exploited for further profit in marine parks. Some are kept in water less than 2 metres deep and used as photo props for holiday “experiences”, handled by an unending stream of members of the public. When they become mothers, they often reject or show no interest in their calves because they have been separated from their own mothers and have no idea how to care for their babies. In nature, they would stay together for their entire lives, learning everything from their mother and other members of their family.
Held in captivity for decades and forced to perform confusing tricks for tourists, the majority die far short of their natural life expectancy. In the past 18 months, three orcas have died at Loro Parque – a marine park promoted by Jet2holidays.
This month, PETA also protested outside Jet2’s annual meeting and held a day of action, overwhelming Jet2holidays’ social media and phone lines and prompting over 26,000 people to write to the company.
In addition, PETA US became a Jet2 shareholder in order to attend the company’s annual meeting and tell it to take immediate action.
Companies Cutting Ties With Marine Parks
Today’s holidaymakers object to seeing frustrated orcas and dolphins swim listlessly in tanks, and the travel industry has caught on. Travel providers – including British Airways Holidays, Virgin Atlantic Holidays, and many more – refuse to sell tickets to marine parks.
Urge Jet2holidays to Act
Jet2holidays must catch up with the rest of the industry and stop profiting from marine mammals’ misery. Please urge the company to act now: