Unfortunately, there has been a real lack of information about the new dolphinarium at Rancho Texas since the work there was approved some time ago. As often happens, this has lead to much speculation, and many incorrect stories being cast around by uninformed people.
We haven’t commented until now, because we were keen to understand the full facts, and we present them here, without bias, so that readers can make up their own minds.
1/ The project has been approved by the European Program of Protected Species, and overseen by experts from the European Association of aquatic mammals, who are specifically tasked with improving the quality of life of animals already under human care.
2/ The four dolphins that have arrived in Lanzarote are from Germany and Holland. They were transported by air with a team of vets, biologists and their care givers, who confirmed they have settled in well to their new dolphinarium and are feeding normally.
3/ All four are from a third generation born in captivity - one is 13 years old, one is 6 and the other two are 5.
4/ The project is to set up a “bachelor group" of dolphins here in Lanzarote, so that they cannot breed and no more will be born here in captivity.
5/ The new dolphinarium in Rancho Texas is one of the largest in Europe, and the animals have much more space than previously in their overcrowded tanks.
6/ The species is bottlenose, which is a coastal subspecies which lives in warm, shallow water at between 3 and 10 metres of depth, and in the wild they live in groups of between 3 and 14 animals.
7/ The older Dolphin is called Noah, the six year old is Kai, and the two youngsters are Diego and Darwin.
Those are the unadorned facts.
The world and public opinion have moved on in recent years, and it’s no longer acceptable to keep sentient animals in captivity, but the fact remains that these dolphins are already under human care, we’re *told* they cannot be released into the wild because they won’t survive, and that the project is aimed at giving them a better life than the one they already have.
We know this is a controversial subject, so by all means comment below with your views.