Thursday, 3 October 2013

Georgia Aquarium heads to court to get wild-caught beluga whales sought by SeaWorld

The Georgia Aquarium went to court Monday in hopes of saving its bid to import 18 wild-caught beluga whales from Russia through a consortium that includes Orlando-based SeaWorld Entertainment Inc.

The complaint, filed in federal court in Georgia, seeks to overturn a ruling issued last month by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Fisheries Service, in which the agency denied the aquarium's application for an import permit.

It is the first time in more than 20 years that any U.S. facility has attempted to import marine mammals captured from the wild specifically for the purposes of public display. Records show that 11 of the 18 whales would likely be transferred to marine parks owned by Orlando-based SeaWorld Entertainment through breeding-loan agreements.

NOAA has ruled that issuing the import permit would contribute to the decline of the wild population from which the beluga whales were captured. But Georgia Aquarium argues that its permit met all the criteria laid out under the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act and that bringing the whales to the U.S. would ensure a genetically sustainable population in captivity.

No comments:

Post a Comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails