Social Distancing Doesn’t Stop Protests Against SeaWorld’s ‘Quarantine’ Tanks

PETA Protesters and a 'Crying Dolphin' Will Gather to Demand No Reopening Unless Marine Mammals Are Sent to Seaside Sanctuaries

For Immediate Release:
March 24, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Orlando, Fla. – It’s different: The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted a new form of protest. Standing at least 6 feet apart, PETA protesters—including a “crying dolphin”—will gather at SeaWorld with signs proclaiming, “SeaWorld: Where Dolphins Are Quarantined for Life.” Instead of handing out leaflets, they’ll display a QR code that passersby can scan to access a hands-free “virtual leaflet” with information about SeaWorld.

When:    Wednesday, March 25, 12 noon

Where:    SeaWorld, 7007 Sea World Dr., Orlando

SeaWorld is currently closed to visitors, and PETA is calling on the park to use this time to develop a plan to move the orcas, bottlenose dolphins, and other marine mammals it holds captive to seaside sanctuaries.

“Dolphins have been packed together under house confinement at SeaWorld for decades—with 140 of them crammed into just seven tiny concrete cells,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA will use every tool available to keep the pressure on SeaWorld to stop exploiting animals for profit and give them back their lives.”

Dolphins in nature swim up to 60 miles a day, dive to depths of nearly 1,500 feet, and maintain dynamic relationships within a large social network. But at SeaWorld, they’re packed into shallow tanks in which they can’t escape attacks from other frustrated, aggressive dolphins. Dolphins at all three parks have been observed with open wounds and extensive scarring on their faces and bodies. They are also forcibly bred, sometimes after being drugged.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind