VHS was extremely pleased when the Vancouver Aquarium announced in January that it would no longer keep whales and dolphins in captivity. This is a victory for animal welfare in Vancouver, for the many groups and individuals who have fought for this to happen and, most of all, for cetaceans.
However, this welcome news was marred in February, when B.C. Supreme Court ruled that a Vancouver Park Board bylaw banning the aquarium from keeping cetaceans was invalid. Now, only public pressure can ensure the aquarium keeps its word not to display cetaceans.
It has become clear over the years that cetaceans do not thrive in captivity and the many premature deaths at the Aquarium have illustrated this. It is also clear that keeping animals in captivity is losing public support. We are hopeful that this trend will continue and that animal captivity will become a thing of the past.
VHS is proud to have played a part in the long campaign to end cetacean captivity, especially our report we published with Zoocheck, that revealed the truth about the Aquarium’s record of research into beluga whales.
Grizzly bear trophy hunt ban
We were thrilled with the provincial government’s decision in December to ban the B.C grizzly bear trophy hunt. Congratulations to everyone who worked to achieve this important victory.