Commissioner Mackinnon: “Send the rescues somewhere else”

Park Board Commissioner Stuart Mackinnon just dropped a bombshell: He wants all cetaceans removed from the Aquarium immediately, which means that the rescued & rehabilitated animals that were deemed non-releasable by federal authorities will have to go.

When asked where they should be placed, he indicated that he basically didn’t care: “They have their marine science centre…rescue, er, at the foot of Main Street, and that might be an appropriate place for them.”

Mackinnon is showing a complete disregard for the welfare of these animals. He clearly doesn’t have in mind what’s best for the animals as long as he gets his will, expressed already back in 2014, to remove cetaceans from the Vancouver Aquarium – apparently, at any cost, if necessary.

We cannot let this happen! Let the Park Board know that Chester, Helen and Daisy must be allowed to stay in Vancouver. If the Park Board must condemn future rescues to a certain death when they cannot be released, at the very least they must allow these three animals that are already there to live out their natural lives. Everything else is beyond cruel, especially for Helen and Daisy who are both approaching the end of their natural lifespans.

Send your emails to the Park Board to these addresses:


Host: […] And is the goal that you would end the display of cetaceans? I mean, will there still be cetaceans at the facility, but just behind, I don’t know, not open to the public, not visible to the public?

Mackinnon: […] Er, the intention of the, er, by-law change is to end cetaceans in captivity in Vancouver Parks. So I would suggest that, no, er, there would be no cetaceans at the Aquarium after this passes.

Host: Now, er, the Aquarium says it does valuable conservation work at its marine mammal rescue program as well as scientific research. Would this by-law mean an end to those programs?

Mackinnon: Only at the Aquarium, in the park. The Aquarium has facilities elsewhere and, of course, we have no jurisdiction over them.


Host: Why not a middle ground then? I take your point, what they’re suggesting, and what you’re going foreward with. Why not allow them to display the ones that are there and just let them live out their lives without moving them or imposing any other change on them?

Mackinnon: Well, this is a concern, er, they said that they were gonna bring more in, which is why the by-law talks about the importation. Erm, so that, there, they can’t bring in more. Erm, what the Park Board and the Aquarium, erm, negotiate through this by-law change, erm, I don’t know. But as I say, the Aquarium does have facilities outside of Vancouver Parks and, erm, perhaps those cetaceans can be moved there.

Host: Alright, er, I mean, is your proposal going to necessitate them to move the cetaceans to somewhere else? It sounds like it will, unless I’m misunderstanding it.


Mackinnon: The ones at Stanley Park, probably. They have their marine science centre…rescue, er, at the foot of Main Street, and that might be an appropriate place for them. Erm, if not, I would suggest that the 100 million dollars of money that they’re investing in their expansion perhaps could be used better to build a facility elsewhere for those ones. (from about 2:30)


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