Monday, January 19, 2009

Sammy the Whale Shark's Freedom Remains Elusive

Back in October we reported that Sammy the whale shark was finally being released. Apparently we were wrong. It's now mid-January and still she waits.

Over 140 days and counting for Sammy, the whale shark, who remains captive in a giant aquarium at the Atlantis hotel on the Palm Jumeirah.

Celebrities came, fireworks lit up the sky, and swirls of red carpet welcomed the glitterati as the hotel held one of the most expensive opening parties last November.

But there seems to be no reprieve for the juvenile whale shark who spends its hours in silent confinement.

When it was first captured, there was news of it being tagged and eventually released.

In a September 10, 2008, report published by Gulf News, Alan Leibman, President and Managing Director of Atlantis, was quoted: "The whale shark is an animal about which little is known and we hope that we can add to the research and data that is available.

"Aquariums and marine habitats have been the key to education about our oceans and the animals that live in them. Education, conservation and research go hand in hand to benefit all marine life."

Fair enough, but when was the endangered animal that usually covers thousands of kilometres in a single journey to be returned to its natural habitat? As the days wore on, silence from Atlantis increased.

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Anonymous said...

Let's hope they release her sooner rather than later.


Neutral Dive Gear said...

So do we, Henry. So do we.

Horizon Charters Guadalupe Cage Diving said...

It's pretty obvious by now that the corporate interests here are really pushing back against a release of Sammy.

It is also blog pushes like these that will free this critter back into the wild, parasite free and with a few extra lbs on him;)

Keep up the pressure, thanks for the update!

Neutral Dive Gear said...

"It's pretty obvious by now that the corporate interests here are really pushing back against a release of Sammy."

Better believe it.

"Keep up the pressure, thanks for the update!"

Just doing our little part. Thanks for all the good work over at the Shark Divers blog!

Live. Dive. Thrive.