Hakkeijima Sea Paradise is located in Yokohama, Japan and was built in 1993. The amusement park consists of an aquarium, shopping mall, hotel, marina and amusement rides. It’s aquarium houses several different species of marine animal’s that include’s a mixture of both mammals and fish.
The aquarium section, known as the “Aqua Resort”, encompasses three major attractions, including the Aqua Museum, Dolphin Fantasy, and the Fureai Lagoon.
The Dolphin Fantasy is an aquarium filled with bottlenose dolphins and occasionally other small dolphin species such as the pacific white sided dolphin. Visitors view the dolphins through a glass tunnel they must walk through with the dolphins swimming above them. There is also a giant ocean sunfish. The animals seem to be exposed to the sun’s unrelenting ray’s during their time in this enclosure and the pool is not significantly deep.
The Fureai Lagoon is a marine petting zoo. This is where guests have the opportunity to pet the dolphin, beluga whale, and walrus. Guests can also pay an additional fee for things like “swim-with-the-dolphins” where guests are put in the pools with the dolphins and beluga. There is also a photo-op opportunity next to a walrus, or guests may go into the outdoor penguin enclosure and “play” with the penguins.
The park also feature’s a marine animal show, where they will have different species of animal’s performing circus like tricks to please the crowd. Included in their show’s are dolphins, beluga whale’s, walruses, sea lions, and two juvenile whale shark’s. Yes, whale sharks.
The whale shark is a slow-moving filter feeding shark and the largest known extant fish species. The largest confirmed individual had a length of 41.50 ft and a weight of more than 21.5 metric tons (47,000 lb), and there are unconfirmed reports of considerably larger whale sharks; Claims of individuals over 46 feet long and weighing at least 30 metric tons (66,000 lb).
These show’s are not only cruel in the animal’s being forced into “performing” for their food but also because of the enclosure’s obviously small size and depth. Many time’s for show’s these different species are all thrown together in the same small tank and forced to perform. Animal’s that otherwise, except for maybe dolphins and seals, would not interact with eachother in the wild. The temperature of the tank must obviously stay at a constant degree, which is likely uncomfortable for those different animals who require a much different water temperature, and is also not good for their health.
This place, Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, is referred to as a “sea paradise” but seems it is more like a $eaPrison in my non-professional opinion. And I’ll go as far to say if anyone take’s the time to research the animal species used housed here and the condition’s they are kept and forced to perfom in, they would agree with me that this place is not one of superior animal care. What do they plan to do with the two whale shark’s (which I am surprised are still alive) once they reach a mature size of over 20 feet long?? Sell them and acquire more? Ridiculous!
Above: Hakkeijima Sea Paradise, July 19, 2008
Dolphin Fantasy tunnel
Juvenile whale sharks with bottlenose dolphin in small barren tank.
Update: KSB told us that although they created 3D simulations for SeaWorld, “SeaWorld has not built the treadmill and isn’t planning on doing so.”
SeaWorld also told Jason Garcia that the treadmill “Isn’t feasible” since it couldn’t be retrofitted to any of their existing tanks. (link)
Basically the treadmill isn’t going to happen because SeaWorld don’t want to fork out for a new orca tank, even though the tanks haven’t been upgraded in 20 years (and even longer at SeaWorld Texas).
And all the while SeaWorld is spending thousands of dollars to build new rides and update their existing waterpark. Nice.
Georgia, a ten year old girl from Austin, TX went to a movie theater with her mother and family friend in July. She didn’t want to see the newest children’s movie, instead she wanted to see “Blackfish.” After seeing the acclaimed documentary, which focuses on why keeping killer whales in captivity is harmful, Georgia was inspired to help change the live’s of these captive animal’s and educate other’s of their plight.
With the help of her mother Georgia started a simple lemonade stand. Her goal? To raise as much money as she could and donate all of the proceed’s to organization’s dedicated to helping whales and dolphins. After making a whole lot of lemonade Georgia raised a grand total of $104! She plan’s to donate half of the proceed’s to Orca Network and the other half to Ric O’ Berry’s Dolphin Project.
Georgia didn’t stop there, on September 1, 2013 she participated in the Japan Dolphins Day 2013 protest in Austin, TX. This event was one of hundred’s around the globe all centered around the same day, September 1st, to expose the dolphin hunt’s and capture’s in Taiji, Japan. Every year between the month’s of September and March nearly 2,000 small whales and dolphin’s are slaughtered for their meat and those worthy are taken captive and sold to marine park’s around the world.
The latest new’s on Georgia is that she and her mother are planning to sell homemade dog treat’s to benefit the ASPCA. This is one little girl who’s hope and determination could very well spread and inspire other’s her age, or even older or younger to start making a difference. This could be the generation to end cetacean captivity.
Georgia (left) at JDD2013 with the event’s coordinator (right), 9/1/2013