Animal Scene - - ANIMAL APPEAL -

It is im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that dol­phins are large­brained, cog­ni­tive an­i­mals. This ac­counts for their so­cial na­ture, their com­mu­ni­ca­tions with each other, and their com­plex re­la­tion­ships within their dol­phin pods, other dol­phins, and the rest of their ma­rine habi­tats. They also trans­fer be­hav­iors to suc­ceed­ing gen­er­a­tions -- ef­fec­tively a cul­tural trans­fer in their own ce­tacean way.

That said, they need their na­tive habi­tats to flour­ish, and it bears re­peat­ing that dol­phins need to live out in the open, not in dol­phi­nar­i­ums or an en­closed fa­cil­ity like the up­com­ing Cebu Ocean Park. Some may claim that such fa­cil­i­ties serve re­search pur­poses, but it is also well doc­u­mented that dol­phins in cap­tiv­ity be­have dif­fer­ently than in the wild, as men­tioned by Ocean Con­ser­va­tion So­ci­ety Pres­i­dent Mad­dalena Bearzi in a 2014 ar­ti­cle for Na­tional Geo­graphic Blogs.

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