Canada bans keeping whales and dolphins in captivity

Legislation passed Monday in Ottawa bans keeping whales and dolphins in captivity.

The federal bill will phase out the practice, but grandfathers in those that are being held at two facilities in the country.

The bill bans the capture of wild cetaceans but allows for the rehabilitation and rescue of aquatic mammals.

Breeding is also banned.

Marineland in Niagara Falls and the Vancouver Aquarium in British Columbia are the only two facilities in Canada that currently keep captive cetaceans.

“Many scientists testified to why it was critical that we stop keeping cetaceans in captivity. We understand why because they are obviously not akin to other animals, for instance, livestock. Cetaceans require the ocean, they require the space, they require acoustic communication over long distances,” Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said in an interview with The Canadian Press.

May first sponsored the bill in 2015.

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