A dolphin has unexpectedly died at Resorts World Sentosa on an island off the coast of Singapore, adding to the resort's already horrible track record: there have been four dolphin deaths since 2008. There are 23 wild-caught dolphins now remaining at the aquarium, and animal advocates are calling for their release.
The resort's Marine Life Park, where the bottlenose dolphins are held, posted this update on their website on Monday:
We are extremely saddened by the passing of our dolphin, Sharmila. Sharmila left us on 11 May 2014. We are conducting tests to confirm the exact cause of death. Prior medical tests indicated that she was healthy. We are closely monitoring all our animals, and as always, no effort or resources will be spared in ensuring the health and well-being of our dolphins at Dolphin Island. We will provide further updates on this blogpost when available.
The park has a sordid history when it comes to its dolphins -- the facility's Dolphin Island attraction. In 2008 and 2009, 27 wild dolphins were caught in the Solomon Islands to populate the park, but three died from bacterial infections before they even arrived to the park.
"We regret that another wild-caught dolphin has died in the care of RWS," said Louis Ng, executive director of the organization Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) in Singapore, who called the death "a tragic and needless loss."
"When is enough enough?" He added, speaking to Yahoo News Singapore. "Four have already died. Help speak up for the remaining 23 wild-caught dolphins. Urge Resorts World to work with ACRES toward rehabilitating and releasing them back into the vast open oceans."
An online petition calling for the remaining 23 dolphins' release already has over 119,000 signatures. You can sign that petition here.
SeaWorld and marine parks profit off keeping orcas and other marine animals in captivity -- despite evidence that captivity not only induces unnatural behaviors in whales, but also endangers trainers. Join us in pledging never to visit SeaWorld or other marine parks until they empty their orca tanks.
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