Iceland isn’t always in the news for the best of reasons when it comes to whales. But a reprieve for this Nordic nation comes with the news that the world’s first beluga whale sanctuary is opening in Iceland’s Westman Islands.
The open water sanctuary will become home to two 12-year-old beluga whales, named “Little White” and “Little Grey.” The whales come from cramped and controversial conditions in Chinese captivity. Last week, we shared the provocative story of a Chinese marine life trainer painting lipstick on a captive beluga.
Sea Life Trust – a conservation charity – is behind the efforts and contends that a semi-closed enclosure is best for their safety. “Our Belugas will never be able to be released due to their dependency on humans, we simply want to retire them from public performances in line with our values,” reads the online petition for the sanctuary.
Read more about the world’s first beluga marine sanctuary, here. Of course, the best way to encounter belugas is not at the aquarium but by swimming and photographing them in the wild.
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