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ANIMALS > New animals arrive at controversial Turkish park

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

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Bodrum’s Dolphin Park has two sea lions and a sea calf from Ukraine for shows. Radikal photo, Serkan OCAK

Bodrum’s Dolphin Park has two sea lions and a sea calf from Ukraine for shows. Radikal photo, Serkan OCAK

New animals have been introduced to Bodrum’s Dolphin Park, the closure of which has been discussed for years, daily Radikal reported. Two sea lions and a sea calf from Ukraine will join the park’s current animals in the park’s entertainment shows.

Dolphin Park in Bodrum’s Güvercinlik district has, along with other dolphin parks in the country, been the focus of discussions criticizing what animal lovers call the imprisonment of dolphins. Dolphin Park, and animal centers like it, receive permission from relevant institutions to continue using these animals in shows.

İsmet Parmak, the owner of Dolphin Park, said the animals came from Ukraine and that all official transactions had already been done. “Discussion always exists. We don’t keep animals in earth ponds. They are in their natural environment. It should be considered with the pluses and minuses. We bring variety to Bodrum’s tourism. We receive demand from visitors,” he said, responding to criticisms.

The two new sea lions are being kept in two sections in the park, each one measuring 1 meter wide, 3 meters long and 4 meters deep. The sea calf is kept in a separate cage of the same size with a small pool next to it. Parmak said public opinion created information pollution about the issue of animal rights. “We call for all animal lovers to come here and see their living environment. They don’t stay in cages all the time. There are three 32-by-20, 17-by-20 and 10-by-8 pools here. Nearly 20 people are working. We are preparing the new season that will open on June 1,” he said.

May/29/2012

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