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NSW Government Bans Dolphin Breeding Following Inquiry

March 1, 2021 Responsible Tourism No Comments Email Email

Today, the NSW Government has announced a new regulation under the Biodiversity Conservation Act that prohibits the breeding or importation of dolphins and other marine mammals.

This follows a landmark inquiry into the use of exotic animals in circuses and the exhibition of cetaceans in NSW, which recommended stronger limitations on the breeding of dolphins.

World Animal Protection along with other animal welfare organisations, including Action for Dolphins, have publicly campaigned for a ban on captive dolphin breeding in Australia for years, so this news for NSW comes as a welcome announcement.

Head of Campaigns at World Animal Protection, Ben Pearson said:

“We are thrilled that the NSW Government has introduced this new regulation – making this the last generation of dolphins kept captive for entertainment in the state.”

“If a dolphin were bred today, it may still be alive in 2070. This regulation frees future dolphins from being confined to a life in lockdown at a time when the public acceptability of keeping these highly intelligent animals captive is declining.”

“This puts mounting pressure on the Queensland Government and Sea World – home to the only dolphin park in Australia continuing to breed dolphins in captivity.”

In March 2019, Dolphin Marine Conservation Park in Coffs Harbour – the only dolphinarium in NSW – committed to stop captive dolphin breeding, and is working with World Animal Protection and Action for Dolphins on relocating their dolphins to a sea sanctuary.

Encouragingly, research* shows 66% of Australians prefer to see dolphins in the wild, and 59% are willing to pay an extra half more for this experience.

Major travel brands including TripAdvisor and have already committed to stop selling tickets to dolphin shows and encounters.

As well as changes from the travel industry, Canada recently passed a ban on keeping dolphins, whales and porpoises for entertainment.

World Animal Protection is calling on the public to be a voice for dolphins and sign their pledge to only see dolphins in the wild on their website at

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