WDC RIP Tilikum, ’star‘ of Blackfish


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News from the world of whales and dolphins

A very happy New Year to you !

What do you want for whales and dolphins in 2017? I asked some of my colleagues what they would wish for and I’ve made a list. I’d love it if you would add your wishes in the comments section. Let’s see how many we can make come true this year by standing together and speaking out for the remarkable beings with whom we share our blue planet.

A humpback whale

I’m starting this year with hope. With your brilliant support and the amazing team of experts I work with at WDC, we have the power to change things for the better. I’m looking forward to sharing all the successes we achieved together in 2016 in your e-news next month. In the meantime, please add your hopes for whales and dolphins in 2017 to our wish list on my blog.

I do have some sad news for you. But even this news comes with hope. Two of the world’s best-known orcas have died. Their lives couldn’t have been more different. Granny was probably more than 100 years old, having escaped the terrible captures that decimated her population in the 1960s and 70s. Granny will always remind us that orcas can live long and incredible lives in the wild.

I wasn’t sure how to feel when Tilikum, the ’star‘ of the movie Blackfish, died at SeaWorld last week. Although I feel sadness, I think my over-riding emotions are relief and hope. Relief that he is no longer enduring the horrible existence that drove him psychotic. And hope that his suffering will not have been in vain – that because the world heard his story through Blackfish, future generations of orcas will not go through what he did. More on both these orcas below.

As always, thank you for your support. We simply wouldn’t be here without you and we appreciate everything that you do, from taking part in our online actions to giving the money that keeps us going.

With very best wishes,

Julia Thoms, WDC campaigns manager

Make a donation to fund our work in 2017

WDC's Julia Thoms at British Airways headquarters

BA say ’no entry‘

304,996 of you asked British Airways to stop supporting SeaWorld. Apparently, BA couldn’t care less what you think. I took our petition to BA’s HQ this week but they had briefed the security guard not to let us in!

Find out what happened


Rest in peace Tilikum

He died two days before SeaWorld’s orca shows ended. Let’s hope the tragedy of his life will mean others can be free.

Read Tilikum’s story

Granny enjoying life

Goodbye to an icon

Granny lived for more than 100 years. Imagine the experiences she had! She represents the long and rich lives of wild orcas. She must have carried the memory of the friends and family she loved and lost to the captures of the 60s and 70s.

More about Granny

Yogscast and Hat Films on the Moray Firth

Thank you Yogscast!

Thanks to leading YouTube network, Yogscast, and the generosity of nearly 90,000 of their amazing fans, WDC has received its biggest ever partner donation of $365,000.

Read more

Dolphin Charm Necklace
Treat the one you whaley love with a Valentine’s gift from our online shop. We’ve got romantic gift ideas for men and women. Or why not just spoil yourself…because you can! Every penny you spend will help us protect whales and dolphins in 2017.

Shop now

Adopt a whale or dolphin
Looking for a Valentine’s gift but trying to avoid the hearts and flowers? How about giving your loved one a whale or dolphin adoption? Our monthly updates mean that not only will they get to know the individual they have adopted, but they will think of you all year round!

Adopt as a Valentine’s gift


You have been sent this email as a WDC supporter.
WDC, Whale and Dolphin Conservation is registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales. Our charity number is 1014705.
Image credits: Humpback whale – WDC/Sue Rocca | British Airways petition – WDC/Rob Lott | Tilikum – Paul Wigmore | Yogscast Crew – Hat Films | Dolphin Necklace – WDC | Dolphins – WDC/Charlie Phillips





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