Announcing New Website – Ocean Advocate has Moved

We are excited to share the launch of Ocean Advocate’s new website,

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We are inviting you to visit and take a look around.  The first two new stories have been published.

Where Will the Whales Go? – a story talking about the potential of US captive whales being shipped overseas in 2015, and

New Southern Resident Killer Whale Birth Surrounded in Mystery – a story of the questions surrounding the newest SRKW calf birth

Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter to get updates of new stories.

We’d love to hear from you. Contact us if you have any story ideas, comments, or feedback.

Good News for Rescued Sea Turtles!

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Last week, we reported that almost 200 Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtles from the Cape Cod area had been brought to various facilities in Florida for rescue.

Today, Keys News reported that nine of 30 turtles that were sent to Marathon Turtle Hospital have made a full recovery and will be released this week off North Florida.

The nine turtles were transported from the Marathon Turtle Hospital to the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach, where they are scheduled to be released later this week, according to Marathon Turtle Hospital Manager Bette Zirkelbach.

Unfortunately, three of the turtles died due to pneumonia-related illnesses last weekend.

We are wishing these nine good luck as they are released!

TAKE ACTION after another orca birth at SeaWorld

Yesterday, SeaWorld posted a video of Kalia giving birth to another Blackfish baby in captivity at SeaWorld San Diego. While the park celebrates, activists cringe.

Kalia is just shy of being 10 years old.  She was not given a choice, but rather she was artificially inseminated last year in order to be a “cash cow” for SeaWorld’s breeding program.  According to scientific studies, orcas in the wild do not produce their first calf until approximately 14-15 years of age.

Kalia’s calf will be the 11th killer whale housed at SeaWorld San Diego, cramped in a very small space.  Behind the Thrills seems “thrilled” at the new birth and proudly state “the calf will not be removed from it’s mother (contrary to popular belief) but will instead be kept with the mother at all times.”  It will be interesting to watch how long these two remain together before one of them is conveniently moved to a different park, perhaps overseas, Their housing together also depends on the mortality of the calf.  We are watching, SeaWorld.

Behind the Thrills goes on to give readers more “Baby whale fun facts”.  My personal favorite is “Calves are born in the water”. And we need killer whales in kept in prison to figure that out???

Please join me in taking action to ask SeaWorld to end their captive breeding program.  This needs to stop NOW!

You can sign (and share) the petition here.

Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtles rehabbed all over Florida


Last week, the Associated Press reported that 193 Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles that stranded near Cape Cod will be shipped to Florida.

These turtles have arrived and are in rehabilitation in seven facilities across Florida.

Valley News reported

The nearly two dozen veterinarians, biologists, drivers and government officials, coordinated by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, huddled in the rain waiting. As soon as the plane’s engines shut down, they went to work, counting out turtle numbers as boxes were loaded into vans.

Within 10 minutes, the first van left for a drive to an aquarium in the Keys. In all, seven aquariums from South to North Florida took some of the reptiles for rehabilitation. SeaWorld took 72 of them.

Turtles have also gone to other states recently, including 50 taken to North Carolina, 31 to Georgia, 20 to South Carolina and 14 to Pennsylvania.

The Florida turtles are likely to be released into the Gulf of Mexico, which is probably the survivors’ birth waters. More than 90 percent of nesting occurs along beaches of the state of Tamaulipas, Mexico.

BetaWired reported that the Florida Aquarium in Tampa will be treating 10 of these endangered turtles.

Cristy Barrett, a senior biologist at the Aquarium, says: “The point is to keep the species alive. When you lose that many turtles, you lose a lot of scientific diversity. It’s really important to save every single life that we can.” Now, Barrett and her co-workers are keeping watch over the 10 turtles they have under their care in Tampa, providing them with liquids, keeping them lubricated and tending to their injuries. The turtles will be there for at least another year, in order to ensure their survival.

The Turtle Hospital, a Keys-based facility in Marathon, is caring for 30 of the sea turtle patients according to CBS Miami.

Hospital officials said Wednesday that each cold-stunned turtle had a full physical examination, X-rays, a swimming test and was administered intravenous fluids and Vitamin D. Hospital staff is endeavoring to slowly raise the reptiles’ body temperatures with the goal of releasing them once they are deemed healthy enough to return to the wild.

Some of the turtles have secondary issues including head trauma and pneumonia.

My Panhandle reports that Gulf World Marine Park will be caring for 50 of the turtles.

Three other Florida facilities, including Sarasota’s Mote Marine Aquarium, are caring for the remaining 31 turtles.

Kemp’s Ridley turtles are the smallest species of marine turtle in the world.  They average about 2 ft. and 100 pounds in adulthood.  To learn more, visit the description at NOAA Fisheries.

Sea Turtles shipped to Florida and NOAA seeks help in Dolphin Shooting Mystery


The Associated Press reported yesterday that 193 sea turtles that stranded near Cape Cod will be shipped to Florida.

The New England Aquarium says the U.S. Coast Guard will ship the Kemp’s Ridley turtles to Orlando before the animals are sent to marine rehabilitation facilities.

CBS Miami reported that after the animals arrive, they are to be divided and ground-transported to the Turtle Hospital, and other Florida facilities at Disney World, SeaWorld, Gumbo Limbo and Miami Seaquarium.


NFW Daily News reports that NOAA is seeking help from the public in solving the fatal shooting of a pregnant dolphin that washed ashore on Miramar Beach on November 13.

The dolphin, which was found on the banks of Choctawhatchee Bay, was within weeks of giving birth, said Gregg Houghaboom, supervisory special agent with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of Law Enforcement.

“Somebody knows something,” he said. “Somebody probably heard it or was with the person who pulled the trigger.”

Houghaboom said his office is investigating the shooting as deliberate act. NOAA is accepting anonymous telephone tips to its hotline at 1-800-853-1964.

Good news for Right Whales, not so good for dolphins in the Keys

For Immediate Release, November 24, 2014 by Center for Biological Diversity

 Feds Agree to Protect More Habitat for East Coast’s Most Endangered Whales by 2016

BOSTON— A deadline for expanding critical habitat protections for the North Atlantic right whale — one of the world’s most endangered whales — has been set in response to a legal settlement agreement. Each year most of the 500 North Atlantic right whales remaining on Earth migrate from their feeding and breeding grounds off the U.S. Northeast to their nursery areas off the Southeast. But only a tiny portion of this expansive range is protected as federally designated “critical habitat” under the Endangered Species Act, making the whales more vulnerable to threats that include commercial fishing gear, ship strikes and oil drilling.

The settlement requires the federal government to make a final decision by February 2016 about where and how much additional habitat should be protected.

Animals in captivity didn’t fare as well today.

British Airways refuses to cut ties with SeaWorld.  With over a quarter of a million signatures on the petition, Jonathan Counsell, British Airways head of environment sent out the following update:

We have actively sought the views of and evidence from a range of people and organisations including the leading NGOs in this field on the issue of cetaceans in captivity. 
We welcome the extensive work undertaken by ABTA in publishing best practice guidance for the welfare of animals in tourism, particularly in countries where laws do not govern animal welfare. SeaWorld has assured us that its animal care standards exceed this best practice guidance and are governed by US federal and state laws alongside accreditation standards set by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums as well as the Association of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums. Further, SeaWorld does not collect cetaceans from the wild and has not done so for nearly three decades.

On this basis we currently see no reason to end our relationship with the organisation. We will continue to offer our customers the option to make their own decisions on whether to visit SeaWorld.

We recognise that the science of cetacean welfare is evolving and we encourage further study in this area.

Dolphin Research Center, located in Marathon, is offering “Holiday photos with a dolphin”, the very definition of exploitation.  According to Virtual-Strategy Magazine,

Holiday Photos with a Dolphin takes place now through Dec. 19 at the Dolphin Research Center in Marathon. Visitors can bring their own Santa hats, reindeer antlers or other accessories to use while posing. The Dolphin Research Center’s experienced photographers will shoot the photos using high resolution digital cameras. Guest can go onto a floating dock to give backrubs and share a “flippershake” with a dolphin while having their photo taken.

Feel free to contact DRC to ask them to stop exploiting dolphins at

Conservation groups file lawsuit for Sea Turtle Protection

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According to the Associated Press,

SARASOTA, Fla. – Several conservation groups filed lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service. They alleged the government’s role in allowing the deaths of thousands of imperiled sea turtles and countless other marine animals outside of power plant cooling systems.

The Center for Biological Diversity said it filed the lawsuit in federal court on Friday.

The groups say thousands of sea turtles get sucked into power plant cooling systems each year, including at the Big Bend, Anclote, Crystal River, Bayside and P.L. Bartow plants in Florida.

Sea turtle species are protected under the federal Endangered Species Act.