South Korea to ban catching of dolphins for shows

Jun 26, 2012
A baby bottlenose dolphin swims with its mother in Indonesia. South Korea will ban the catching of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins for use in shows by designating them as protected mammals, the maritime affairs ministry said Tuesday.

South Korea will ban the catching of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins for use in shows by designating them as protected mammals, the maritime affairs ministry said Tuesday.

An upcoming bill will also designate and as protected species, the ministry said.

Currently it is legal to catch dolphins and whales for a show or for research if authorities give prior approval. Otherwise, it is punishable by a jail term of up to two years or a fine of up to five million won ($4,300).

The revised law would authorise seizures only for research. It would raise penalties to up to three years' imprisonment or a fine of up to 20 million won.

Dolphins are widely used for shows in South Korea. But Seoul's main zoo agreed in March to suspend its popular show over claims by activists that one of the dolphins was captured illegally.

In April, a court on the southern holiday island of Jeju ordered the release into the ocean of five dolphins which had been captured without permission and used in a show.

Some experts say dolphin shows have educational value and released mammals may not be able to adapt to the . But animal rights activists have called for a ban on dolphin shows and tough rules on seizures.

Explore further: Cuban, US scientists bond over big sharks

Related Stories

Indonesia to review dolphin release plan: official

Jun 17, 2011

Indonesia said Friday it would consider rehabilitating captive dolphins before releasing them into the wild, after animal welfare activists criticised a plan to dump them directly into the sea.

Dolphins have ability to sense electrical signals

Jul 29, 2011

In a new study published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, researchers reveal the discovery of how the Guiana dolphin, Sotalia guianensis, is able to sense electric fields of prey in the water using ...

18 endangered dolphins spotted off Borneo: WWF

Feb 07, 2012

Conservation group WWF said it spotted 18 critically endangered Irrawaddy dolphins in Indonesian waters off Borneo island Tuesday and called for greater protection of the species' habitat.

Recommended for you

Cuban, US scientists bond over big sharks

Jul 03, 2015

Somewhere in the North Atlantic right now, a longfin mako shark—a cousin of the storied great white—is cruising around, oblivious to the yellow satellite tag on its dorsal fin.

Research shows 'mulch fungus' causes turfgrass disease

Jul 02, 2015

Inadvertently continuing a line of study they conducted about 15 years ago, a team of Penn State researchers recently discovered the causal agent for an emerging turfgrass disease affecting golf courses around ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.