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!

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.

Ocean Walls – Captivating People, Keeping the Wild Free


Ocean Walls, which debuts November 8 at Victoria’s Hillside Centre, will open a window into the Pacific Ocean without stepping outside to do so.  The concept of Ocean Walls is a digital interactive medium that allows people to share their personal encounters with the wild by taking the online world into the real world of public spaces like shopping centres.

Chris Porter, one of the creators of Ocean Walls, wants to focus more on our activities and technologies to be deployed in the wild to monitor and share the direct condition of the ocean in real time.  By getting more of the public to learn about what is happening to our ocean through direct interaction, it is his hope that viewers will take greater ownership and responsibility to ensure direct action.

Chris is no stranger to cetaceans and our oceans.  He got his start as a trainer at Sealand of the Pacific where he worked with Tilikum, the infamous killer whale highlighted in the film Blackfish.  Later he became senior trainer at Vancouver Aquarium.  Following his work at Vancouver Aquarium, he was one of the leading dolphin traders in the captivity industry, capturing dolphins in the Solomon Islands.  In the mid-2000s, Chris came under fire for his work in the trade and left the Solomon Islands, leaving behind the dolphin export business as well.

For the past 5 years, after 25 years in the captivity industry, Chris has become an activist for marine mammals.  He has always loved dolphins, and now has come to see the beauty of dolphins in their own waters.  Last year, he was featured in the film Blackfish where he shares his experiences with Tilikum. He has also made several other public appearances to share his story and bring awareness to captive cetaceans and the plight of our oceans.  He is frustrated that the millions of dollars being spent on aquariums does not solve the wild conservation issues and initiatives that need to be funded. Ocean Walls will bring the current state of our ocean and it’s inhabitants to the forefront of the public eye, reaching a greater audience with a variety of backgrounds and interests.

WildVision is accepting new videos from the public to be displayed, and footage will be updated regularly.  Videos will run for various lengths of time.  In the next year, plans are underway to bring in experts to talk about issues affecting the marine environment to further the educational experience. The hope is to expand into other venues such as spas, hotel lobbies, and schools.  If you have videos to submit, you can contact them on any social media site using the hashtag #OceanWalls.

 OceanWalls… Captivating People, Keeping the Wild Free!

It is time to lay the myth to rest that people cannot be happy unless the real thing is in front of them.

A San Diego Progressive Takes On SeaWorld

Tim Zimmermann

Is this the best use of valuable San Diego property?

Not everyone who lives in San Diego thinks San Diego needs to protect SeaWorld. Linda Perine, of the Democratic Womans Club, wades into the fray with facts, links, and a fierce attitude:

Being very well connected and making a lot of contributions to politicians allows a business a fair amount of leeway, especially in San Diego.

As Voice of San Diego pointed out in one of its somewhat boosterish articles Sea World By the Numbers  Sea World employs up to 4,500 people, albeit many are temporary positions and minimum wage.

As was mentioned before, Sea World pays a percentage of its income as rent on a lease to the City that some view as extraordinarily favorable to Sea World.  While putting $14 million into the public coffers may be an attention getter, it is nowhere near what it ought…

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The Virgin Pledge** (**Including Loopholes And Caveats)

Tim Zimmermann

After months of deliberation, Sir Richard Branson has finally settled on the language of the pledge he wants captive facilities to make if they would like to continue to do business with Virgin companies. Here is how the Virgin Pledge reads:


While Branson and Virgin should get credit for at least engaging on this issue, and while this pledge would mean that a marine park can’t just buy a Taiji dolphin and continue to do business with Virgin, that’s about all it achieves. If you caught lots of wild dolphins for your shows before February 2014, no problem. If you engage in breeding loans with marine parks that capture wild dolphins and killer whales, no problem as long as the animal you are importing wasn’t wild caught (though it can be the offspring of a wild dolphin or whale, allowing your breeding program to benefit from wild captures). So the…

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What’s Wrong With Kayla the Killer Whale?

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It has been well documented that Tilikum spends the majority of his time logging at the surface of his tank, but it turns out he is not the only one.

At a recent visit to SeaWorld Orlando, Kayla also spent an exorbitant amount of time stationary at the surface while her tankmates swam circles around her.  Kayla was born in November 1988, making her the second oldest captive born killer whale in SeaWorld’s collection at only 25 years old.

In Death at SeaWorld, David Kirby reported that Kayla had been taken away from her mother at 2 years old.  In October 2005 she gave birth to Halyn in San Antonio.  Having never learned maternal skills, she rejected her calf.  Halyn died in San Antonio at only two and a half years old.   In November 2006 Kayla was moved from San Antonio to Orlando.

According the NOAA, female Killer Whales in the wild typically live about 50 years but can live as long as 100 years.  Granny, the infamous matriarch of the Southern Resident Killer Whales, is estimated to be 103 years old.  Granny made waves earlier this year when she was spotted after traveling 800 miles in a little over a week with her pod.

Then there’s Kayla…

Naomi Rose of Animal Welfare Institute observed that “the logging behavior was excessive and especially troubling given the activity of the other whales in the tank” 

To put things in perspective