About Kirsten Massebeau

I am a blogger activist for dolphins and whales.

Risso’s Dolphins are First Victims of Taiji “The Cove” Dolphin Hunting Season 2014


By Kirsten Massebeau

The string of “blue cove days” ended September 16, 2014 as an innocent pod of Risso’s dolphins was driven into a remote cove in a state park in Taiji, Japan where a handful of men captured, and then slaughtered the entire pod. The yearly capture and slaughter of dolphins was made famous in 2009 when the documentary, “The Cove” was released revealing the inhumane and cruel treatment of these highly intelligent beings whose lives are destroyed for aquariums, food, and fertilizer. The hunt that takes place each year from September until March is brutal, grueling, cruel and deadly for the dolphin victims that attempt to travel past Taiji, Japan located in the Wakayama, Prefecture.

For several hours the  pod of Risso’s dolphins fought bravely for their lives but sadly they were no match for the hunters with their high powered Mercury engines and banger poles. The family was driven into the cove, pushed under the killing tarps, and then were quickly transported to the butchers house, the entrance known as “Death’s Door”.

While the Taiji Whale Museum and ISANA dolphin hunters union continue to scream culture and “tradition” this is absolutely untrue. The dolphin drive began in 1969 as pest control and then only a few years later aquariums began buying dolphins from dolphin drive fisheries. In the early 1980’s SeaWorld and other marine parks began to underwrite the drive fisheries began to underwrite dolphin drive fisheries for display. 

 Ric O’Barry states that the “World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) has the power to end this if they would stop these captures”. They must immediately expel the Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquariums (JAZA) responsible for blood dolphin trafficking. “They get as much as $154,000 dollars for one dolphin for an aquarium or marine park”. In a recent CNBC interview Ric O’Barry star of The Cove, and head of The Ric O’Barry Dolphin Project points out a graph that shows the slaughtered dolphin numbers dropping ( the meat is toxic only eaten by a few!) while captures for aquariums are increasing. Ric’s wish is to bring Carolyn Kennedy who spoke out against dolphin drive fisheries last season to come to The Cove” and see first hand the terrible dolphin death and suffering that goes in Taiji, Japan and their strong ties to the captive industry.

Dolphin Talk Radio Interviews Takayo-san Japanese Activist For Dolphins


By Barbara Napoles

Takayo-san will be our next guest on Dolphin Talk Radio! This rising Japanese activist has dedicated her life to saving dolphins and animals worldwide! Please listen and call in with your questions on Tuesday 10PM EST, 7PM PST, and 11:00 Tokyo time!

Takayo was deeply moved upon seeing the plight of the dolphins in Taiji when viewing the Academy Award-winning documentary, “The Cove.”

Since then she has dedicated her life to saving these and other precious creatures. Takayo has done extensive research on the destruction of sea life and established “One Ocean, One Breath,” an organization dedicated to protecting aquatic animals.

She has worked tirelessly investigating the illegal sale of whale and dolphin meat in Japan, and has been in constant contact with numerous Taiji officials. Takayo has been chosen to be a representative for Japan at the upcoming Asia Animal Conference. The purpose of this coalition is to have united power to lobby the various organizations and governments that deal with captive dolphins.

Takayo has received support from all over the world and is eager to spread the message far beyond Japan.

Once the show starts there will a “Skype” logo where you can listen but also call in to the show for our overseas listeners. Please wait until we announce that the phone bank is open. Guest Call-in number is (424) 675-8287

Direct link to the show: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/dolphintalkradio/2014/08/27/interview-with-takayo-a-japanese-activist

►Event Time Announcer: bit.ly/1loGyLp

Dolphin Talk Radio Interview With Ric O’Barry Star of The Cove!


By Kirsten Massebeau

On August 19 at 12 noon EST Dolphin Talk Radio will be interviewing Ric O’Barry star of, “The Cove” and director of the Ric O’Barry Dolphin Project. He will be discussing and taking questions on the dolphin drive in Taiji, Japan that begins September 1st, Japan Dolphins Day 2014, WAZA and JAZA’s involvement in Taiji, and the dolphins on display at the Mirage hotel in Las Vegas. Compose your questions for Ric, and be listening, and ready to call in when the lines open for questions! Please limit one question per caller. (424) 675-8287 

“Ric O’Barry’s mission is to put an end to dolphin exploitation and slaughter once and for all. Dolphins are regularly captured, harassed, slaughtered and sold into captivity around the world – all in the name of profit. The Dolphin Project was founded In 1970, a group that aims to educate the public about captivity and, where feasible, free captive dolphins. O’Barry works not only to halt these slaughters in countries around the world, but also to rehabilitate captive dolphins, investigate and advocate for economic alternatives to dolphin slaughter exploitation, and to put a permanent end to dolphin captivity.

The Dolphin Project has achieved many important victories for dolphins over the years. We brought the world’s attention to brutal drive hunts taking place along the coast of Japan, as seen in the 2009 Academy Award-winning feature documentary “The Cove,” ; we successfully negotiated for an end to dolphin slaughter in the Solomon Islands; we and we continue to raise awareness that captivity is cruel.

Ric O’Barry has been working towards there goals for over 40 years, and he continues his quest to put an end to dolphin suffering. Be sure to stay tuned for information on how you can get involved and make a difference”. (Source, Dolphin Project Facebook)

 

 

 

 

Dolphin Talk Radio’s Second Show with Runners for Dolphins a Success!


By Kirsten Massebeau Join us for the show! Call in and get involved in spreading awareness for dolphins! Dolphin Talk Radio’s second show entitled “Athletes Running for Dolphins” was a great success! Please have a listen! Just follow this link and learn more about these two great athletes and advocates for dolphins!

Shannon Richards a third grade, teacher and triathlon athlete did a fantastic job of sharing her passion as she participates in grueling triathlons in support of dolphins in captivity. In her bio this is what she said: “I feel like I am just an ordinary person who wants to make the world a better place, like many of us do. I love being inspired by others, and I strive to inspire others to find their passions and fulfill them, no matter how silly or insignificant they may be. My passions are teaching, loving animals, and competing in triathlons. I got this crazy idea to combine them all after seeing Blackfish and The Cove. Why not raise awareness for cetaceans in captivity while I am training and racing? In doing so, I feel like I am helping these dolphins and whales in some small way by causing people to stop and wonder why captivity is so wrong for these beautiful animals. If I can reach one person by running down the street, or riding my bike with “Ric O Barry’s Dolphin Project” logo on my back, I feel like I am one step closer to helping end captivity for them. Ending cetacean captivity is something I feel very strongly about, and I am so glad I have found such a great cause to help keep me motivated! I have made some wonderful new friends around the world, and I have also helped educate my family and friends, who in turn pass this information on to others. My plan is to continue to race for dolphins and whales and reach all the people I can until all the tanks are empty” (Shannon Richards, Tri for Change) Listen to Shannon’s story HERE!

Jennifer Wolfsong an attorney spoke about her drive to help dolphins after seeing the 2009 documentary on Netflix called, “The Cove”: I happened upon the movie, “The Cove” about 3 and a half years ago when I was surfing Netflix.  It disturbed me so much that I couldn’t think about anything else.  I didn’t sleep for weeks because I couldn’t get those horrible images out of my head.  I decided I had to do something, something drastic to catch people’s attention.  I have been a runner since high school so a running event seemed the natural choice.  In 2011 I started training to run 100 miles on Sept. 1, 2012, the start of Taiji’s dolphin hunting season.  I ended up shortening my goal to 100k (61 miles) but with the hopes of running 100 miles in the future.  I did successfully run 100km in Sept 2012 and raised more than $3,000 for Save Japan Dolphins.  I was unable to do a 100 mile run in 2013 but late in 2013 I started training again, this time to complete a 100 mile race this September.

” In watching the Cove, there is one thing that Ric O’Barry said that stays with me.  He said (and I’m paraphrasing) that if we can stop this one brutality in the world, there is hope that we can save the planet.  This is what I hold onto during my long, grueling training runs, that I’m running to keep hope alive”. (Jennifer Wolfsong) Listen to Jennifer’s story HEREFollow the link and listen to their creative activism to help dolphins worldwide!

Dolphin Talk Radio Interviews Two Creative Athletes Making a Difference for Dolphins


By Kirsten Massebeau

Meet Jennifer Wolfsong and Shannon Richards true champions for dolphins!

Meet Jennifer Wolfsong and Shannon Richards true champions for dolphins!

Please join us on the new Dolphin Talk Radio featuring your hosts Barbara Napoles and Kirsten Massebeau as they interview Shannon Richards a triathlon athlete and Jennifer Wolfsong a marathon runner who have dedicated their races to saving dolphins. Inspired by “Blackfish” and “The Cove” both Jennifer and Shannon have inspirational journeys to share as they talk about how they became involved in the fight to save dolphins from capture, captivity and slaughter.

The Tuesday August 5, 2014 Dolphin Talk Radio Show entitled “Athletes Running for Dolphin Freedom” will begin at 11pm Eastern time and 8pm Pacific time. Call in with your questions and comments (424) 675-8287. Dolphin Talk Radio is a way to stand up, speak out and make a difference for dolphins worldwide. Together we can make a difference! Mark your calendars and have a listen!

Tweetstorm: Free The Mojave Dolphins From The Mirage Hotel


By Kirsten Massebeau

On July 12, 2014 temperatures reached 102 degrees fahrenheit in Las Vegas, Nevada. Unbeknownst to many 10 dolphins are trapped in the Mojave desert far from the ocean. Despite the many dolphin deaths the Mirage hotel and casino’s, “Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat“, also know as the, “Dolphin Death Pool” continues to be restocked. The dolphins imprisoned in the Mirage’s “Dolphin Death Pool”, continue to prove the desert is no place for highly intelligent and social, ocean animals by failing to thrive, and dying after their long work days entertaining guests for profit at the MGM Resort in the heart of the Las Vegas Strip.

Take a VIP tour, trainer for a day image taken by Cindy

“Take a VIP tour, Trainer for a day image”, taken by Cindy Seip SplashFoto, July 5, 2014

On July 19, 2014 Dolphin Tweetstormers will unite on Twitter in an attempt to create awareness, and expose the unnatural and cruel conditions dolphins must endure in the  “Dolphin Death Pool”. According to long-time dolphin activist and creator of the Facebook page, “Save the Blood Dolphins“, Barbara Napole’s: “The desert is no place for dolphins”! Barbara a Floridian, and accomplished captain, navigator, and sailor of her own ship has seen wild dolphins in the ocean for most of her life. When she learned about Siegfried and Roy’s, Dolphin Death Garden she knew that she must take action. She created her petition at that time entitled: “No More Dolphins Swimming in Las Vegas”. Since its creation in 2011 the petition has gathered over 85,000 signatures. Her petition encourages MGM Resorts to close, and retire the dolphins suffering in the Mirage’s “Secret Dolphin Death Pool”:

In 2013 was a breakthrough for the dolphins suffering in the Mirage as Facebook page Free The Mojave Dolphins from the Mirage. Creator Shelly Rae and co- administrator Cecilia LaBar Mialon are now making waves in Las Vegas documenting and fighting for the dolphins imprisoned at the MGM Resorts Mirage. Their Facebook page, events and petitions are drawing worldwide attention.

Louie Psihoyos director and star of The Cove signed No More Dolphins in Las Vegas!

Louie Psihoyos director and star of The Cove signed No More Dolphins in Las Vegas! Join Louie and sign the petition here!  Be a voice for dolphins join the July 19th event here!

“This petition proposes its readers to urge the Mirage to prepare a plan to provide shade and/or relocate the dolphins to a facility that mimics the dolphins natural environment. These creatures belong in the ocean, not in the middle of the desert. If they are truly a research and educational facility they would not need to be located on the Las Vegas Strip”! (source)

Dolphins do NOT belong in the Desert (Mirage Hotel Dolphins from Martyn Stewart on Vimeo. “A twenty-four year sentence” “The Polynesian themed resort known as ‘The Mirage’ has been keeping dolphins captive for the past twenty-four years.  Twenty-Two dolphins have been confined to a life of unnatural and tragic existence since the “habitat” opening in 1990.  Twelve have perished including babies and four wild caught.  That’s an astonishing 55% death rate giving the facility the nickname of “The Dolphin Death Pool”. Here is a list of the dolphins that have died there since its opening in 1990: * Rascal – age 4 – Death unknown * Darla – age 18 – Died from chronic pancreatitis * Squirt – age 15 – Died from respiratory ailment * Picabo – age 18 – Died suddenly from internal tear in its stomach * Bugsy – age 3 – Died from pulmonary abscess * No name – Stillborn * No name – 2 week old calf – died from pulmonary edema * Sigma – age 32 – Died from heart failure * Banjo – age 32 – Died from heart failure * Merlin – age 40 (estimate) – died from pneumonia * Sage – age 11 – death unknown * St. Pepper – age 2 – lung infection The causes for such a high mortality rate is due mainly to stress related diseases and perhaps the extreme summer temperatures as high as 118 degrees. (source)

Martyn Stewart wildlife photographer recently visited the, “Dolphin Death Pool” documenting pox marks on dolphins languishing in the summer heat. In an interview with Champions for Cetaceans he had this to say about trainers and staff at the “Secret Dolphin Habitat”: “The many things that were said to me still stick in my mind like “We feed the dolphins Restaurant quality fish” Do they really believe this stuff that comes out of their mouths! If a dolphin had a choose, would he catch it in the wild alive or book a table in a restaurant to eat!! Its preposterous”!(Martyn Stewart)

“This is a sad still from a video I took today at the mirage in Vegas. This dolphin was going back and forward biting the gate and concrete that separates the two pools in the secret garden. I asked one of the “Educators” why is he doing this? She replied “He likes the sound of his teeth rubbing against the concrete and metal, maybe the taste too!! The woman called the “educator” had only been in the job 2 weeks and she said “in the wild, they don’t have the benefits we provide for these animals like hoops and balls!!!! I will tell them how i feel when i leave this god forsaken place…. until then, i will let them play the dickhead in the show because they are really good at it”! (Martyn Stewart)

 Join our TWEETSTORM on Saturday July 19 to free the Mojave Dolphins from the Mirage Hotel, in Las Vegas! AND SIGN the 4 petitions! Favor firmar las 4 peticiones!

JOIN the Thunderclap ► http://bit.ly/1ykBNEJ

1. No More Dolphins Swimming in Las Vegas ► http://chn.ge/1n47pfp

2. I Take The Pledge to Boycott #MGMResorts Until The Mirage’s “Secret Dolphin Death Garden and Habitat” is Closed in Las Vegas! ► http://chn.ge/1sWMElp

3. APHIS enforce the Animal Welfare Act at the Mirage Hotel Casino. ► http://chn.ge/1mEWJTb

No more Yoga with dolphins

Say No more Yoga with dolphins at the Mirage in Las Vegas sign here!

4. Say NO to yoga with dolphins at The Mirage in Las Vegas ►http://chn.ge/1shSrUW

July 19, 2014: Be the change you want to see! Join the Tweetstorm To Free the Mojave Dolphins from The Mirage Hotel and be a voice for the dolphins suffering so terribly in the heat of the Mojave Desert!

38 Countries, 234 Cities Produced 11,653 Tweets For Dolphin Freedom!!


By Kirsten Massebeau

38 countries, 234 cities produced 11,653 tweets for dolphin freedom!!

38 countries, 234 cities produced 11,653 tweets for release of the remaining 23 dolphins at the Resort World Sentosa slowly dying in captivity.

On May 13, 2014 it was reported that yet another dolphin has died from the original 27 dolphins captured and sold to Resort World Sentosa. Dolphin advocates joined forces, during a Tweetstorm organized by the Facebook page Save The Blood Dolphins. Barbara Napoles creator of Save The Blood Dolphins had this to say about her personal motivation for the Tweetstorm: “When I read that another dolphin had passed, once again I could not stand by and now with new our team of talented activists on Save The Blood Dolphins it was decided that those that enabled the export needed to be exposed”. Social media activists would turn out ten fold to produce 11,693 Tweets that continue to grow now topping at 122,690, exposing the terrible exploitation and treatment of endangered Indo-Pacific dolphins, captured for Resort World Sentosa in the Solomon Islands in 2007. Napoles also created a petition entitled: “Please Help Free the “Sentosa 23″ from Resort World in Sentosa Singapore”. Today the petition has 122,629 signatures gathering more and more signatures everyday.

Following the release of Sharmila’s death (ACRES) Singapore’s Animal Concerns Research and Education Society had this to say: “When is enough enough? Four have already died. Help speak up for the remaining 23 wild-caught dolphins. Urge Resorts World to work with ACRES toward rehabilitating and releasing them back into the vast open oceans.”(source)

Following Sharmila’s death, Resort World Sentosa had this to say: “We are conducting tests to confirm the exact cause of death. Prior medical tests indicated that she was healthy. We are closely monitoring all our animals, and as always, no effort or resources will be spared in ensuring the health and well-being of our dolphins at Dolphin Island,” (source)

“For each pool, there were several dolphins crammed into a space not much bigger than a volleyball court. “In the second photo, two of the dolphins were not in the water, while another was knocking its head on the wall of the pool. “It was very heartrending to see them. “Related:Marine Life Park visitor ‘embarrassed’ by blurry exhibits inside RWS oceanarium RWS dolphin dies en route to RWS Marine Life Park” (source)

“Transport is traumatic: A dolphin’s body is not adapted to air temperatures or the effects of gravity on land. So when a dolphin is hoisted out of the water, he/she can overheat very quickly. And the sudden pressure of her own body weight over her inner organs can cause severe pain and sometimes permanent cramps all over its body. Imagine going through such agony for ten to twelve hours while being transported to a new water tank. These cramps can even make the dolphin incapable of moving when lowered back into the water, resulting in death by drowning”.(source)

“RWS has stated that they have “a world-class team of experienced professionals and animal experts” and it is their “mission to provide our animals with top-class care, and to treat them with respect.” They had obviously failed to live up to their promise… the wild-caught dolphins were housed for almost a year, in enclosures that were small and rusty. Two of them died here…”(source) 

Things would change dramatically in 2003 as Marine Export Ltd. (MEL) would come to the Solomon Islands convincing islanders to capture dolphins for marine parks.

During the hunt, capture and confinement many wild dolphin lives would be lost as they were forced to live in shallow waters fenced off waters in murky waters fed dead fish: “The 2003 capture resulted in an illegal import to Mexico and a weakening of CITES (please see CSI’s web-archived October, 2003 Whales Alive!). Half of those dolphins in Mexico have died since then. Given the Solomon Islanders’ attitude towards this species of dolphin, it is very likely that many, many more died during the captures”.(source)

In 2007 Ocean Embassy/Wildlife International Network would come to the Solomon Islands to obtain dolphins for captive facilities. In 2007 William Rossiter opened his article, “Solomon Islands” saying this: “The Solomon Islands again attracted international condemnation in June when at least twenty newly-captured Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops aduncus, appeared in the infamous pens used in the brutal and exploitive 2003 dolphin capture”.(source)

In 2007 Robin Friday Jr. and brother Chad were dispatched by Robin Friday the founder of Wildlife International Network and serves as the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Ocean Embassy, Inc. and Wildlife International Network, Inc. to prepare the wild caught newly-captured Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, for sale and transport. The Ocean Embassy/WIN members quickly found ways to circumvent CITES and skewed population data to forward their plans of exportation:

According the CSI whale the now powerful partnership Of Ocean Embassy/WIN found ways to again circumvent CITES and export dolphins: “In late June Porter, finally admitting what everyone knows, hired a U.S. scientist to get some data, albeit a little late. Porter’s MEL partners include Wildlife International Network Inc. (WIN), including Robin Friday, Mark Simmons, and Ted N. Turner, although Turner may have left. In Panama WIN calls itself “Ocean Embassy”, where their extremely controversial permit to capture 80 local dolphins for captive display and probable sale continues to fuel such a public fury that it might be on hold when you read this”.(source)

According to Ocean Embassy/ WIN the ex SeaWorld trainers plan to continue their plunder of the Solomon Island for dolphins despite the objections of islanders. They make it very clear their career as dolphin traffickers is ongoing and alive. These men believe themselves unstoppable: “We continue to see a future where limited dolphin exports, local dolphin population studies, new international zoological dolphin experiences and captive studies can result in a sustainable conservation and business initiative for the Solomon Islands”.(source)

It is easy to see why the death of yet another wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins motivated so many people to speak out by tweeting out 11,653 times.

Isn’t it time that organizations like Ocean Embassy/ WIN composed of ex SeaWorld, Marine Park trainers be exposed and stopped before more dolphins are ripped from their families and the oceans to line their pockets with gold.   The world must become aware that the captive industry is a business that will stop at nothing to make a profit. Ocean Embassy’s white washing of their activities behind training stranded dolphins and releases may fool non profits like Born Free who has not responded to our inquiries regarding their relationship with Robin Friday bur not true dolphin advocates who recognize cetaceans as free ranging, highly intelligent beings. (Robin Friday worked with Born Free to help with the release of Tom and Misha despite his history as a dolphin trafficker. Born Free has not yet commented on our inquiries).

Resort World Sentosa also continues to show their real colors as they dredge Bimini destroying a critical habitat and coral reef to create yet another huge resort, that they most likely hope to populate with more wild dolphins obtained by their partners at Ocean Embassy/WIN. 

While the Tweetstorm has ended, the fight to free the remaining 23 Indo-Pacific dolphins from Resort World Sentosa continues. Save The World’s Saddest Dolphins/ Acres offers petitions and ways to get involved on their website and Save the World’s Saddest Dolphins/ACRES on Facebook. Join us on Save the Blood Dolphins as we fight for the dolphins in trouble worldwide.    ‘