STOP Moby Solangi's "Dolphin Circus" In The Gulf

Maureen Dauphinee
Maureen Dauphinee 6 Comments
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IMMS & Dauphin Island Sea Lab researcher Moby Solangi, entrusted with the necropsy results on the estimated 6500+ bottlenose dolphins that have died since the BP Oil Spill Disaster in the Gulf has now found a "new" occupation - Dolphin Circus Show coming to Mississippi Coast. The dolphins used in this "circus" are the same dolphins rescued from Gulf Shores during the BP Oil Spill Disaster! How has this been allowed to happen? What's worse is the funding has been secured through a $10 Million dollar US Government Grant, with additional funding coming from the state of Mississippi of over $5 Million dollars in funding, to which they anticipate being reimbursed through BP funding. Solangi has been a dolphin abuser for YEARS. Moby Solangi, owner of Marine Animal Productions (MAP) in Gulfport Mississippi, is being painted as a hero by CNN, ABC News and other media outlets for rescuing the very same dolphins that he abandoned before hurricane Katrina struck. So far, none of the media have investigated Solangi's background or his track record. If the media had done a little research, they would have learned that Solangi has captured more than a hundred dolphins in US waters, particularly in Mississippi Sound. These victim dolphins have been sentenced to a miserable life in sea circuses, amusement parks, the US navy and other captive dolphin facilities. Some of the captured dolphins were rented to zoos in the United States, such as the Oklahoma City Zoo. The Zoo's dolphin exhibit was finally closed when animal protection organizations exposed the high death record. It is therefore ironic to see how the media is now portraying Solangi as a heroic figure who actually cares about dolphins. The media is not telling the public the whole story, and the dolphin protection community is calling for a balanced account. The media left out one of the most important parts of this feel-good-story: Who is Moby Solangi, and what exactly does Marine Animal Productions do? Everyone knew in advance that a category five hurricane was bearing down on the Gulf states. There was plenty of time to evacuate the animals from this disaster. Why were these helpless animals abandoned in the first place? Dolphin captures are carried out in great secrecy, as dolphinariums don’t want the graphic images of struggling and panic-stricken dolphins to reach the public. We will never know how many dolphins have died as a result of capture operations orchestrated by MAP but, according to a sworn statement written and signed by a former employee of Marine Life, Gulfport, Mississippi, more than twenty dolphins were killed during a single capture. Here is an excerpt from the account: "Every diver had a dolphin, although they could not keep their blowholes above water (…) Through the semi-circle the float corks were going under, obvious signs of netted, drowning dolphins. We could not help them, just watch until they went still. It did not take long for the dolphins to start drowning, probably because of their extreme exertion and panic. (…) One dolphin had a loop around his fluke. (…) We continued to remove the net from the dolphins, and they just slowly sank to the bottom.” The eyewitness account ends: "The permanent Marine Life employees who were on that collection were later told by Moby not to discuss Marine Life business with any other employees or with anyone outside of Marine Life (...) I have since learned that there is good reason for Moby to be concerned, given the fact that Marine Animal Productions delivered at least 23 dolphins to the navy in 1988. The death of over 20 other animals would have exceeded his quota for capture by at least 18." Solangi is one of the world's biggest traffickers in captive dolphins, and his track record is a litany of violent dolphin captures and exploitation. We urge the US government officials to deny Solangi a permit to rebuild another captive dolphin facility anyplace or conduct a "dolphin circus" anywhere in the United States.

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