It is disheartening to know that one of the most beautiful creatures residing in our oceans is under threat. Scientific inquests have shown that these are dolphins are among the most intelligent creatures in the world. Their social behavior is awesome to behold, and they have the ability to communicate with humans more than any other animals. When you add the fact that they help police the ocean, saving humans from predatory sharks, you would agree that saving dolphins is a cause we should all lend a voice to.
Thankfully, saving dolphins is not a Herculean task. They are only under threat because of our mindless destruction of the environment. Thankfully, it’s not too late to make better decisions and encourage others to do so as well. Here are some things you can do to help save the dolphins and other beautiful creatures in the ocean.
Stop eating dolphin meat
Dolphin hunting is one of the activities that make them an endangered species. Some villages in Japan and Peru are hot zones for the mindless slaughtering of dolphins. Some of these places even celebrate the killing as some sort of festival. Environmental activist groups have moved to sensitize the people and put pressure on the government to make better policies that would stop these killings. However, as an individual, you can choose not to be complicit if you say no to dolphin meat. If there are no buyers for this meat, the roughly 18,000 dolphins killed in one village alone would be a waste. The buyers rely on the demand in the international market. If you are one of those that crave dolphin meat, it is high time you replaced it with something more sustainable. You could also do well by informing someone else while you are at it.
A dolphin captive show is not a good way to spend the weekend
Fans of swim-with shows do just as much damage as those that eat dolphins, but they may not know. First, there is nothing as pristine as letting animals thrive in their natural environment. No matter the amount of love and care showered on a dolphin at an aquarium, it cannot be as good as letting it roam freely in the oceans. Dolphinaria all over the world pay heavily to get dolphins from natives. The dolphins are subjected to harsh conditions in drive fisheries and many of them are killed in the process. The next time you see a smiling dolphin in dolphinaria, you should know that about a dozen others have been killed to get it there.
Worse still, capturing dolphins for dolphinaria motivate villagers to kill them for meat. The live dolphins represent only a small fraction of the dolphins that were removed from their habitat. The good work done by promoters of dolphin conservation for many years can be undone by agents for dolphinaria within a matter of weeks. Their persistence and mouthwatering offers make it difficult for the simple villagers to keep to their pledge of not killing dolphins. A classic example is found in the Japanese village of Iki where the villagers went back to their old ways after more than a decade cessation in dolphin capture.
You may be surprised to learn that not eating dolphins is not enough if you wish to save dolphins. According to the Whale and Dolphin Conservation, an estimated 300,000 dolphins, porpoises, and whales die every year as a bycatch in fisheries across the globe. This fatality rate is clearly unacceptable. Dolphin-safe or dolphin-friendly (EU) labels have been introduced to reduce the number of accidental dolphin deaths during tuna fishing. However, this label is as controversial as they come. Boycotting tuna is one of the best things you can do to save the dolphins.
Join the plastic pollution coalition
Ocean waste is one of the biggest threats to the lives of dolphins and plastic easily tops the list of ocean contaminants. Their non-degradable nature means they never leave the environment, no matter how hard we try. This is why the bulk of plastic waste gets into our oceans. The plastics leach dangerous toxins that pose an immediate threat to the lives of dolphins. They could also have an effect on their reproductive and immune system. This poses a threat to their long-term survival. Furthermore, plastic pollution damage marine habitats. The coral reefs and animals or plants below the food chain and killed and it becomes harder for those higher up to survive. If we are able to significantly reduce our dependence on plastic, we would have done a lot towards saving the dolphins.
Encourage others and donate
There are numerous organizations that are constantly advocating for better ocean conservation policies. These organizations also educate people on the need to make better decisions in order to protect the life of dolphins. You can donate your widow’s mite towards these organizations to lend your support for the fight to save dolphins. While you are at it, you should also educate others about the need to be deliberate about saving dolphins. You may just be creating a ripple effect.