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Diving with Dolphins

Old Sep 11th, 2003, 03:54 AM
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rmr
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Diving with Dolphins

Is there anywhere you can swim with the dolphins in Costa Rica? TIA!
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 04:41 AM
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Message: I would ask you to please reconsider the dolphin swim. They are incredibly cruel. I did it once and was sorry ever since. No matter how clean or nice it looks, more than half of the dolphins die within 60 to 90 days of capture.
In order to make an informed decision, please visit:

http://dolphinproject.org/

http://www.hsus.org/ace/11727

(The second site is the Humane Society of the United States' position on SWTD programs.)


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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 10:22 AM
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Diana, you always manage to beat me to the punch!

rmr, so far there are no 'captive dolphins' in Costa Rica and I prey it remains that way.

If you mean real diving and swimming with dolphins in the wild, you're in luck! There are very large populations of dolphins and whales in the Drake Bay area of Osa Peninsula. As it's a somewhat remote area, all the lodges in the area will include meals in the cost of the stay.
Do a search for 'Dolphins, Drake Bay' on your favorite search engine (mine is google.com) and many of the lodges and tours will come up.
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 10:32 AM
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Haha! Ally. I'm so quick to jump the gun whenever I see "swim with dolphins."
I always just assume the person means some kind of a program.
I'm sure that what you are talking about is most likely what rmr meant!
How did things go for you in Mexico?
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 10:35 AM
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Went great! Got some really good footage for the documentary. But it was so depressing, I had to leave immediately and get a shot of Tequila for my nerves!
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 11:25 AM
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I really have to hand it to people like you who are able to do something like what you are working on.
I am such a little radical. I'm sure that I would have just had to say something to someone.
It's really important to go about obtaining this kind of information in a methodical and professional manner so you can appeal to people who want to be educated.
I have a tendency to get a little too aggressive about it since I feel so strongly. I know that can make an argument less effective.
Best of luck with it. I will always remember SCUBA diving at Chankanaab in Mexico and swimming past the dolphin pens at their SWTD program. I can tell you that it is hard to swim at 60 feet when crying and fogging up a mask #39;(
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 11:53 AM
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We stayed at Aguila de Osa on Drake Bay last February. On the way to a snorkle trip to Cano Island, there was a large pod of about 30 dolphins. Several guys from our boat jumped into the water to 'swim with them'. I have to admit the dolphins weren't too impressed. They didn't swim away, but they sure didn't let the people get too close. Still, it was great fun to watch them. Greatly prefer it to climbing in a pen with a poor captive dolphin.
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 04:32 PM
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You can swim with a wide variety of tropical fish, rays and even experience sharks but dolphins here are not all that interested in humans. They race us and perform in the wake of the boat while sailing quietly beside them but when we stop they normaly just keep going after a quick look. I have had guests jump over board against our wishes but the dolphins just don't find us that interesting. Over the last few years we are seeing fewer dolphins pods within 1 - 2 miles off shore and they seem to be feeding constantly and not as playful.. It has been a terrible year for commercial fishing and as a result the dolphins are heading out to sea for more feed. I too hope we never see these beautiful animals in captivity.
Michael
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Old Sep 11th, 2003, 10:18 PM
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Ally, I know it's a bit off topic, but I am interested in what documentary you are working on (as mentioned by Diana). Could you refer me to another thread, give a brief description here, or email me directly?
Thanks!
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Old Sep 12th, 2003, 11:56 AM
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Marilyn,
I've been a TV/Radio Producer for about 20 years and have worked on some documentaries. But this one is my own. I'm producing a documentary on the captive dolphin industry and the alternative, seeing them in the wild. There are many sailing trips in the Caribbean that you can take to 'swim with dolphins in the wild' and I plan on going on a couple of those to get footage as well as more 'captive dolphin' footage. I have JUST started getting footage, as honestly, it took me over a year to learn enough about the industry, and dolphins in general, to feel qualified to make the film! I was not really even going to start shooting until the first of the year (I'm lining up trips now and the first will be Belize in Jan) but I had already planned a short vacation on Isla Mujeres for the first week of Sept. and could not pass up the chance to get footage of the dolphins that we're imported from the Solomon Islands to Parque Nizuc in Cancun this past July. Wow, talk about a sad, sad sight. As well as the mexican dolphins that were not 'working' that day. Swimming in cirlces, but mostly just languishing at the surface not moving at all. That is NOT what a dolphin does. As I said, it was very sad.

There is a documentary that was produced last year about 'Lolita', a captive orca in Florida and about the industry that is very good. It's called "Lolita. Slave to Entertainment". If you do a search on the web you can find the web site (sorry I don't have it handy) or do a search for 'Rattle the Cage Productions", who produced it. It's being touted at 'the ONE film the captive industry does NOT want you to see' and is really quite disturbing.

Diana, I kept my mouth shut, but it wasn't easy. My sister however did not do as well. I had paid for her to 'swim with the dolphins' so I could go back and get footage. When it came time to get pushed (the dolphins propel you through the water by pushing your feet) she didn't want to do it. A little girl asked her why and she said.."Because I don't want a dolphin to have to push me for food". Poor girl didn't know what to say. I was just thanking god the trainer didn't hear her and get us kicked out!
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Old Sep 20th, 2003, 09:35 PM
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Thanks for your hard work Ally. Those movies a few years ago with the Orca were heartbreaking and the thought of those beautiful dolphins in the pens who were once free to jump and swim in the open just makes me sick. We were in the Bahamas a couple of years ago and heard several people talking about swimming with dolphins in captivity there. Couldn't bring myself to do it. There are people in Gulfo Dulce who take you out to swim with them. Haven't heard of anybody having much luck. Had quite a few swimming along side the ferry when coming back to Pto Jimenez from Golfito one year. Saw tons of them out of Drake Bay and out of Quepos when fishing.
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