January 2015- Headlines around the world read, “Ontario to Ban Killer Whales.” Our government was receiving great praise for making this bold statement and we were thrilled they had done so. However, since then, several questions have been raised and they are very concerning questions……
First and foremost, what they failed to mention at the time, was what they planned on doing with Kiska, Ontario’s (and it appears as though Canada’s) very last sole surviving orca ,who has been an unwitting tourist attraction in Niagara Falls, ON for almost 4 decades.
When Bill 80 was publicly released (see Bill 80- http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/bills/bills_detail.do?locale=en&Intranet&BillID=3213) it was then clear just what they intended to do with Kiska. They wish to grandfather her into this Bill which essentially means that if passed as it is now, Kiska will never have the chance at seeing another member of her species ever again. She could potentially survive another 20-30 years and given what science tells us regarding just how social, emotional and intelligent her species is, this would be devastating for her. Furthermore, there is no where else in the WORLD that holds a captive killer whale in solitary confinement, and for good reason. But the province of Ontario is not only allowing it but appears to be condoning it by NOT including Kiska in the prohibition of orca whales within our province.
What also makes no sense to me and many others around the world is; how is it that the government recognizes that killer whales do not make good candidates for captivity because they are incredibly intelligent, highly emotional, extremely social, wide ranging, deep diving complex beings…….and to then go as far as banning the species but to then leave our provinces LAST one to continue on in solitude like this? Kiska obviously shares all of these things as her wild counterparts also do, so why not include her? This makes zero sense…..
As wonderful a step it is to ban the breeding and acquisition of orca, I would challenge the government to divulge why they have specifically centered out only banning killer whale’s and not ALL cetaceans such as dolphin and beluga’s? This also does not make much sense as they also share many of the same characteristics as orca do.
As well…..and this is shocking….Bill 80 does nothing to stop Ontario facilities from importing wild whales and dolphins from other jurisdictions. Check out the link to beluga capture footage from Russia. It is horrific! https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=10&v=S21Tzc4H9ZM Why are we STILL allowing this here in our province?
Please email the Premier urging her to intervene and make Bill 80 stronger. Tell her that Kiska needs to be included in Bill 80’s prohibition of orca whales BUT also, to include other whales and dolphins, as they share all the same characteristics the government has recognized in killer whales. Especially if they are removed from the wild…….
MESSAGE Kathleen Wynne- https://correspondence.premier.gov.on.ca/…/fee…/default.aspx
FAX- 416-325-3745 (if you don’t have a fax machine, use this VERY EASY free, online fax https://faxzero.com/ )
Email her constituency office and ask that they forward your concerns to her Queen’s Park address @- firstname.lastname@example.org