RICK TROUT, EX-NAVY DOLPHIN TRAINER, JOINS THE PERFECT PAIR DOLPHIN TRILOGY IN CONDEMNING ACTIVIST, RIC O'BARRY
Attention all anti-captivity ceta activists. As many of you know, on 15th August 2019, we posted on Facebook and Twitter a damning comment alleging that Ric O’Barry of The Dolphin Project, Margaux Dodds of the UK charity Marine Connection and her then-cohort Gaye Hunter, purposely set out to discredit and organise a charity block of The Perfect Pair Dolphin Trilogy exposé.
This was a decision we did not make lightly as we knew our allegation would send shockwaves through the anti-cap ceta industry. So, we prepared ourselves for the backlash to follow. What happened next, however, was the exact opposite - a revolt against the Ric O’Barry camp by prominent ceta activists and the much-respected former US Navy dolphin trainer Rick Trout of Save the Navy Dolphins. Rick Trout’s experience as a US marine mammal trainer, rescuer and advocate is second to none.
This is what he had to say:
Thanks Belinda Morris for alert on this all too familiar practice perfected by Ric the Cut Throat and Con Man O'Barry whose slime seems to be dripping through his ill-named son, Lincoln, into a NexGen class of crooks still riding the backs of captive dolphins like Ric rode Lolita's back in his 60s hippy days at Miami Seaquarium.
Reading O'Barry's Behind the Dolphin Smile is required reading for anyone wanting to understand he's not only cut throat but cut belly, a practice he perfected to sink and hide dolphins drowned in net capture operations in South Carolina waters to finally capture a lone white albino dolphin, "Snowball." She was imprisoned for display at MSQ only to die in 6 months, after which they taxidermy STUFFED her to still hang on public display, a tribute to the lengths this ghoul and his employer would go to exploit Marine Mammals. No surprise O'Barry's addiction to attention, pain killers, 5-star travel and accommodations have left him often bankrupt and in need of more and more blood money.
Let this stand as my intro to my many years as eye witness to a man who gloated at being the "Pastor of The Church of the Happy Dolphin" after his Behind the Dolphin Smile boosted his pocket book and profile into a new role as paid dolphin advocate instead of paid dolphin disemboweller.
Please read or re-read Behind the Dolphin Smile to learn, as I had to, how incredibly and dangerously narcissistic this self-proclaimed hero was when he destroyed the Sugarloaf Dolphin Sanctuary in the 90s sending Navy dolphin Buck to his death due to malnutrition, and Navy dolphins Luther and Jake back to the Navy killing pens in San Diego as a result of Ric's illegal, ill-prepared and self-promoting dump and run release.
We all share Dolphin Project's philosophical disgust for the killing, exploitation and domination of our Marine Mammal neighbors. I dare say none of us share the guilt and mercenary motivations that DP's founder has used to taint and monkey wrench the advocacy/activism efforts necessary to fight both exploiters and ".orgs" Best nutshell advice that I was given by Joe and Rosie, dolphin release coordinator, who counselled me AFTER the Sugarloaf debacle, "Ric is a lone male hero who does not share the stage well with anyone." If Russ Rector was still here, he could fill in many more blanks that, if needed or desired, I will do as soon as I am able.
In reply to Tracy J Holroyd (co-author of The Perfect Pair Dolphin Trilogy):
Thanks for reading my words with such sensitivity. I still hear Ric OBarry's haunting words in 1994, "We have to do this squeaky clean" in organizational meetings planning and dealing with Federal requirements to take Navy dolphins Luther, Buck and Jake, and Bogie and Bacall back to their home waters. What O'Barry kept very secret were the 3 self-promoting independent deals he made with French, German and British film teams to do a "dolphin release on Independence Day in 1995", a totally unrealistic date given the political hoops and bureaucratic realities confronting the challenges for any "squeaky clean" success that could have been a roadmap for Emptying the Tanks! Sadly, and just as secretly, Ric had received money up front from all 3 film makers to deliver Independence Day release footage in exchange for the balance. Sadly, Ric's Flipper days familiarity with navigating rich waters of filmmaking resulted in bankrupting the Sugarloaf Dolphin Sanctuary and all future hope for releasing captive dolphins in America.
In reply to Shelley Mattocks (activist – Dolph N Whale Pub, Dolph ‘N’ Whale +, Mimi’s Wishes, “NATURE WARRIORS” bleed the green hearts):
You are so right. In addition to being prosecuted, found guilty and fined $60,000 for 6 violations of the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act for the neglect of 6 Sugarloaf Sanctuary rescue dolphins Molly, Bogie, Bacall and Navy dolphins Jake, Luther and Buck who died from complications of injury and inability to adapt after the illegal and ill-conceived dump and run release; the Federal Judge told Ric O'Barry in 1996 that Ric had destroyed for decades the concept of returning American captive dolphins to their home waters. Sadly, the judge was right, and the captivity industry has been laughing at the advocacy/activist community and all the way to their blood money bank ever since.
One big difference between Russ Rector and Ric O’Barry was that Russ's pit bull biker activism came from his heart - not his wallet.
Lead rescuer/founder Marine Mammal Conservancy 1995-2005
Dolphin rescue and advocate/diver 2005-present
Former dolphin trainer at Ocean Reef Club, Key Largo
Former Dolphin Sea Lion Trainer whistle blower at Naval Ocean Systems Center
Former Swimmer Nullification Trainer at Navy dolphins
Former dolphin trainer at SAIC
Former Commercial Diver at The Ocean Corporation
animal rights activist slams charities for shunning the perfect pair dolphin trilogy - the dolphin "blackfish"
Over the years, I have read numerous books about captive dolphins and the unbridled horror they face day after day. Many of these books brought tears to my eyes; many left an indelible mark upon me; but The Perfect Pair Dolphin Trilogy without doubt stamped my heart forever. I have never read a book - let alone a trilogy - where I literally felt my heart beating through my chest. Never have I read a book where the anticipation was so overwhelming. To me, it can only be compared to the 1933 movie, King Kong, when Fay Wray was the sacrifice: the drums, the beat, the anticipation. Just waiting for Kong to make his long-overdue entrance was overwhelming. That is pretty much how I would equate reading this trilogy, page by page, waiting for what comes next.
When you read this amazing story, I guarantee that you will feel disturbed and heartbroken, as shock and disbelief sweeps over you.
On completion of the trilogy, you will have learned everything that these captive dolphins are about. You will feel connected to them, as they capture your imagination in a variety of ways. You will be filled with an overabundance of emotions - feelings unique to you. I love that this trilogy delves into the dolphins’ curiosity about everyone and everything; their relationships with one another and their extraordinary, powerful bonds. You will read about a myriad emotions – happiness, sadness, anger and, sadly, their acceptance that all hope is lost and there is only one way out … the biggest heartbreaker of all. The Perfect Pair trilogy touches on all that and so much more.
You will read how in many instances, the dolphins acted like spoiled children, throwing fits when they did not get their way. Those times always brought a smile to my face. They were mischievous, causing all sorts of mayhem for their trainer and one another - something you don’t always find in other animals. Last, but certainly not least, loyalty and love: you will read about the dolphins’ undying allegiances and their connection with one another.
The magical part of this trilogy is the amazing connection the dolphins had with David Capello, their trainer. That was special and something to behold; and it is that which sets them apart from other animals in the wild. When I tell you that these highly social dolphins will give their heart, body, mind and soul, believe it! They really will. And I say with absolute certainty that all the dolphins David trained fell into this category. In a nutshell, the dolphins in The Perfect Pair trilogy were sleek, graceful, playful, amazing and - the best word to describe them – majestic.
Unfortunately, where there is good, there is always bad – and it is scandalous that the bad exposed in this trilogy should be so meticulously shielded by the very same organizations that claim to be helping captive dolphins. Lies are just part of the bad that cloaks the lifespan of a captive dolphin, not to mention the mental abuse that trainers and presenters endure. It is beyond grueling, heartbreaking, gut-wrenching … but, most of all, it is painfully sad - comparable to watching someone you love dearly enduring unimaginable pain until their very end. And here’s the kicker ... that’s just a fraction of what you will feel when reading this exposé - that’s just how special it is.
Where there is good and bad, there is often evil - horror, torture, neglect and murder. Yes, murder! It’s an absolute disgrace how the big corporations have zero regard when it comes to dolphins. I am still shocked at how low they will go to make a dollar. They have no heart or compassion. The company featured in the trilogy (the kind behind all aquariums, dolphinariums and zoos) pushed and pushed until these amazing dolphins could perform no more. Then, like all big money conglomerates, it incorporated tactics geared to breaking the dolphins’ minds - shake-ups, force feeds and more. And when the company realized that it was costing money to keep dolphins who were no longer fit to perform, it simply ‘disposed’ of them, making it appear as if they had died of natural causes. Further, depending on the circumstances, they would erase all history of said dolphins from official company logbooks. Delete and move on to the next dolphin, who will live out his life in the same way. Rewind and replay.
I truly believe that if people knew about the hell captive dolphins endure, things would change. Case in point, people might already know that captive dolphins live in a pool 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; but do they know that most live their entire lives in chlorinated water? Chlorinated water! Imagine washing your face in bleach mixed with water; what that would do to your eyes, skin etc. Imagine living in it till your end of days. But not only do these heartless companies expect their captive dolphins to swim in chlorinated water, they also close their eyes to the havoc wreaked in the pools by algae and bacteria. Their solution? Add more chlorine until the dolphins are forced to swim with their eyes welded shut.
The abhorrent tactics these companies use to make a dollar leave me speechless. It’s just a damn shame that the charities already know this - and so much more – yet don’t care. When I tell you that The Perfect Pair trilogy touches on this - and a lot more - believe me, it does.
Let me hit on something else - a fact that I personally believe to be blatantly overlooked: reproduction is difficult in captivity … added to which, it is damn near impossible to maintain a family as animals are traded between different facilities like we traded baseball cards back in the 70s and 80s. ALL dolphins belong in a vast ocean of blue - not an artificial pool. To put things into perspective, the sea is to dolphins like air is to birds, no less …
Knowing this, ask yourself, why would charities go to such lengths to block this exposé? Why? We already know the answer: it’s about lies, deceit and maintaining cover-ups that have been going on for longer than we can imagine. To me, the fact that this trilogy could blow the captive industry wide open IF it had proper exposure speaks volumes. It scares all the money-hungry companies with their far-reaching tentacles. There are so many people who are vehemently against dolphin captivity, but what can you do when the charities are literally backstabbers – counterproductive thieves mired in their own personal agendas?
The fact is, these ‘charities’ outwardly promote what all activists are fighting for; yet behind the curtain, they use public donations for the exact opposite, not giving a crap about captivity or, even more egregious, actually supporting captivity.
Can someone please explain how a world-renowned charity can claim to be working to shut down the captive dolphin industry once and for all, then, when offered photos, documents, witness testimony and irrefutable proof from official dolphinarium logbooks, do NOTHING … ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!? I myself have witnessed this. I have been peppering the largest charities in the world with emails and receiving no replies at all. I find it truly demoralizing ... but, make no mistake about it, my resolve has never been greater. After you read The Perfect Pair trilogy, you will understand why I feel like this.
I have always said that Blackfish put a massive dent in the armor of SeaWorld, and I believe that if this trilogy no longer faced a UK media block, and the powers that be in the USA ceased pushing it into the shadows, the armor of the captive dolphin industry would likewise be pierced. If only there were a charity prepared to fight, rather than cave to the point where envelopes are handed beneath tables …
We need someone prepared to put their foot down on the greedy corporations that abuse dolphins. It's time we ALL let the public see what really happens when the curtain falls and the artifice drops.
C Nico, Animal Rights Activist
I was originally asked to do a guest blog about the Faroes, as I’m known for my hatred towards wannabee Vikings that like to kill cetaceans and abuse unarmed protestors, but only if they can hide behind the illegal protection of the Danish navy. Beyond that, what more can be said about these pathetic sub-humans?
This started me thinking about the current state of the environmental organisations - and boy was it depressing!
A few years ago, the big names were taking risks – protecting seal pups from being clubbed to death, obstructing whaling ships and even sinking them. And they needed funds to finance this, which is understandable.
But what do they do now?
Well, they still ask for money – some using heart-breaking tv adverts, showcasing a few animals they claim to be protecting. But some are actually supporting the Canadian seal pup clubbing - the very same seals they were once fighting to protect. Others say they support only traditional seal hunting that is done with respect. And they support trophy hunting. How many people making regular donations realise that?
To quote: “WWF is not an animal welfare organization. We support the hunting and consumption of wild animals provided the harvesting does not threaten the long-term survival of wildlife populations. WWF has never opposed a sustainable seal hunt in northern or eastern Canada.” I’m not sure how that sits with the adverts.
According to an article in The Guardian: “In a move that took many people by surprise, three of the world's largest international non-government groups, Greenpeace, WWF and the Pew Environment Group, today said they were prepared to see commercial whaling resumed if six conditions were met.” I would think that most animal lovers are opposed to all whaling, especially in light of the agonising killing methods used.
And then there is support for “sustainable” seal hunting, whatever that is. I wonder how many donors know about that?
For years, I have been cynical about the activities of these organisations and regarded them as money-making machines. I regarded Sea Shepherd as the only real organisation fighting for wildlife. But, sadly, that belief is now demolished. What do Sea Shepherd do? Film the illegal Icelandic whaling, film the Faroe wannabee Vikings, harass the Japanese whalers … Oh no, my mistake! They don’t go near the Japanese anymore.
I cannot believe that filming something of which governments are already aware, but choose to ignore, is going to change anything. Even more amazing are the whale conservation organisations that promote tourism to Iceland – trying to justify it by talking about supporting whale tourism instead. Go on a whale-watching trip and see an illegal whaling ship dragging an illegally-killed whale behind it! No thanks – complete tourism boycotts should be called for.
Sadly, I recently encountered Paul Watson in an online “discussion” about the recent Norwegian warship sinking. I was in total disagreement with one of Watson’s cronies. I said that the Norwegians deserved the massive cost of the loss due to their massive illegal whaling programme. The Norwegian Sea Shepherd crony was brutal in his replies. Shortly after, Paul Watson made an announcement that practically matched my feelings word for word. Then, he joined the discussion and blanked me, whilst being chummy with the same Norwegian who had been venomous about our shared opinion. Watson did not even have the conviction to stand up for his announcement. Hero to zero springs to mind!
So, what have they achieved apart from selling gullible animal lovers vastly overpriced bags and tee-shirts? (Yes, I have those, but am ashamed to wear them now!) Faroes, Japan, Norway, Iceland and, of course, the Vaquita. Have there been any major breakthroughs recently? A few minor ones, sure, but I wonder if it’s now all getting to be a holiday using other people’s money.
They have started on a ghost fishing campaign, but surely that’s just tagging onto an already well-established effort, so not a high-risk, ground-breaking new venture?
It’s not just the big international atrocities, either. Take fox hunting – now illegal in the UK, but what has changed? Nothing! Despite its illegality, it continues as before under a false name, with hunters beating up opposing saboteur heroes. And it’s likely to be the sabs themselves who get arrested.
Also in the UK: gamekeepers using illegal traps; the mass killing of hares; and protected birds of prey that just happen to die near shooting estates. Shame the police don’t seem to care about wildlife crime!
There is also talk about other UK organisations – speculation about the RSPB killing large numbers of wildlife, yet terrified to comment on the massive slaughter of protected birds by cats.
Wildlife cull is popular now – usually with tenuous attempts at justification. Badgers killed en masse, whilst hunts with hounds rampage on the same ground. The Scottish Natural Heritage allowing a mass cull of geese, and now a mass slaughter of stoats. This may be justified, considering the ability of the stoat to wipe out native ground-nesting birds; but they seem to be blind to the issue of birds killed by the non-native domestic cat and feral cats.
Sadly, SeaWorld continues. Travel groups make bold anti-SeaWorld statements, but omit to mention that they have involvement in captive cetaceans elsewhere.
Balloon releases continue unchecked, but beware of criticising. Apparently, it is in order to celebrate the loss of one person by mass littering that has the potential to kill wildlife. If you dare politely request that they use a different, not-so-damaging memorial, not only do the offending group “go” for you, but you are also branded a heartless monster by your so-called fellow animal lovers.
Another issue is the fear of not being politically correct. It’s got to the point that you cannot criticise anyone, no matter what they do, in case they are offended.
And that brings me to public involvement. Sadly, social media is overrun by ‘PC prudes’. In their eyes, it’s more offensive to call someone an unpleasant name than to illegally fire an explosive harpoon into a whale. What sort of logic is that? I would rather someone call me names than shoot me with a harpoon. Apparently, criticism is wrong, so we must be polite and understanding towards lowlife scum. Well, that’s been tried for years and nothing has changed. Such people should be outcasts. After all, the UK government was once happy to go to war with Iceland, but now it is too spineless (or, is it corrupt?) to offer any meaningful opposition to its illegal whaling.
It’s a sad state of affairs when barbaric and illegal activities are considered to be less of a problem than a bit of bad language and, to me, the sad reality is that if you say anything slightly rude or non-PC, you get stabbed in the back by the very people who should be supporting you. I have now withdrawn all connections with what I consider to be fraudulent organisations, as all I get is infuriating news that I am not allowed to comment on for fear of getting savaged by people claiming to be on the same side as me.
Until animal lovers have the intelligence to realise that, despite our relatively minor differences in approach, we need to unite and focus on the common enemy rather than fight between ourselves, then the activist movement is a waste of time. Nothing will change. The whalers, hunters, hare coursers and other assorted nutcases that enjoy killing know this and use it to their advantage. To be blunt, they regard wildlife protection as a joke – fragmented groups bitching about one another. What we really need is for all barbaric abuse to be graded as to severity, and then attacked with a combined effort and wiped out before moving on to the next atrocity. A war will never be won by fighting 50 subjects at once. Animal lovers need to be organised and co-ordinated, or they are useless.
I am sure I will be regarded as yet another armchair warrior, but as someone involved in practical wildlife rescue for many years - as well as rehab and other activities, all self-funded, I am far from that. But no matter what you do, you are considered worthless unless you are a vegan. But that’s another story! It sometimes amuses me when I am criticised or stabbed in the back by some who do nothing but shout their big mouths off. Especially as they have no idea just how active and devoted to wildlife rescue I am.
Finally, let’s talk about parents. I think that all the combined efforts of recycling, renewable energy, etc would be overshadowed if one other logic could be drummed into people’s mentality - the insane over-breeding obsession. The world is massively overpopulated by the worst possible species and, insanely, even those who claim to want to save the planet seem oblivious to this, breeding to excess.
In my opinion, the most valuable work is done by individuals and small charities, largely underfunded due to the big charities fraudulently winning the majority of charitable donations. I’d be interested to see the wages of their top people. I was recently offered a £50 donation from someone who reported an injured corvid that I rescued. I politely turned it down as I was not comfortable getting money from someone who couldn’t afford it. I later found out that the money was paid to the veterinary surgery I use towards my ongoing bills. That kindness reduced me to tears, but it at least proved that there are some decent people left.
To finish, I have given up campaigning to concentrate on rescue and rehab work. I consider this to be important, because I can see the results of my efforts. Rescue and rehab may not change the world, but it changes the world for each particular animal rescued, and if I can improve the world for just one animal, I will have achieved far more than so many of the gobby armchair experts out there!
RESCUE AND REHABILITATION ACTIVIST
Due to this activist's ties to several environmental organisations, he has asked to remain anonymous.
THE PERFECT PAIR DOLPHIN TRILOGY PUBLISHES QUORA BLOG BY journalist and author MALCOLM J BRENNER - ARE DOLPHINS TELEPATHIC OR NOT?
Well I say they are, and I’m trying to demonstrate, if not prove it. The reason I do is I received what seemed like telepathic communications during a 6-month-long relationship I had with a dolphin in 1971, the subject of my novel “Wet Goddess.” I thought I was going crazy (or taking too many drugs) until I learned of Frank Robson, a very straight old NZ fisherman who claimed in his book “Thinking Dolphins, Talking Whales” that he trained all the dolphins for the Taranaki, NZ Marineland by telepathy!
Since then I’ve become acquainted with several others who make similar claims, including one who collaborated with two writers on a trilogy called “The Perfect Pair” which I highly recommend.
I can’t begin to explain how this phenomenon happens, or how our minds manage to translate between our different modalities of thought, but it does happen and it’s very real. Why does it happen with dolphins and not so much other animals?
Well, dolphins, like us, are self-aware: When a dolphin looks in a mirror, it knows it’s seeing a reflection of itself! They have been this way for at least 12 million years, whereas we modern humans appeared on the scene about 150,000–200,000 years ago. It stands to reason the dolphins have had a lot longer to explore the way consciousness works, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they know a thing or two about the nature of reality that we, for all our vaunted science and technology, don’t!
How does the captive cetacean industry work?
Applications for aqua circus attractions, ie dolphin/orca/beluga shows or swim-with-dolphins programmes, entail getting the relevant local officials on board - a process that takes many months to put into place.
So, by the time public meetings occur, deals are, in most cases, already done and dusted – favours accepted, contracts signed and planning applications well under way.
So, why have these meetings in the first place?
A purely cosmetic exercise to placate the locals and remove any time-delaying obstacles from the proposed aqua circus project.
Where do the captive dolphins come from?
The vast majority are sourced from the notorious Japanese killing cove of Taiji – a black stain on the planet that quite literally drinks the blood of Atlantis. It is here that young, unmarked dolphins are enslaved into global dolphinaria by gangster overlords. The rest (parents and older, craggier-looking dolphins) are barbarically slaughtered by hammering steel rods through their spines - a heinous act that inflicts a slow and torturous death on those super-intelligent beings rejected by the aqua circus.
How quickly is a dolphin made ready for shows?
With expert trainers, a basic show can be cobbled together within 6 months. It is achieved by 15-hour days and sleep deprivation … food for thought for all those officials who gave the thumbs-up to this ill-advised venture.
What happens to the dolphins’ bodily waste?
A dolphin is a mammal, which means – like humans – it discards urine and faeces.
In a chlorinated show pool (or ‘concrete box’, as I prefer to call it), the waste is broken down using chemicals – a process which not only demands first-class filtration facilities but also regular and costly pool dumps … the latter regularly dodged by dolphinaria company owners due to high costs, which means that by the time they are forced to act, the water is toxic.
So, what happens to this toxic water?
It is dumped into the drainage system or the sea … in this instance, your beautiful bay.
If the facility, however, is situated in the waters of the bay itself, dolphin waste will flow freely around the area, which could - if tidal movements are limited - affect coral reefs and other aquatic life.
And so, to finish - the problems I’ve outlined in this blog are only the tip of the iceberg as I have not dealt with the many injurious effects inflicted on the dolphin performers themselves. Abused, broken Atlanteans, suffering from deep psychological problems, doomed to spend the rest of their days languishing in an alien world.
However, I am sorely aware that Atlantean welfare always comes a very poor second to profiteering. Like many ex-trainers, I am not so naïve as to believe that my words will alter the course your elected officials have embarked on. However, I implore all concerned residents to remember this poisonous decision come polling day.
Thank you for listening.
David Capello – Former Head Trainer