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Beluga Whale Sanctuary

The SEA LIFE Trust, in collaboration with the Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), has established the world's first whale sanctuary to capture 2 belugas (white whales). The project is designed to return whales and dolphins that live in captivity to a natural environment.

Since Merlin Entertainments (the parent company of SEA LIFE) took over Changfeng Ocean World in 2012, a sustainable solution has been sought for the 2 Beloegas that were held there. This was driven by the philosophy of not keeping cetaceans such as dolphins and whales in captivity.

Last week Little Grey and Little White (the 2 Belugas) flew from Changfeng Ocean World in Shanghai, China to Heimaey Island in Iceland. The flight was sponsored by Cargolux and carried out in a specially stickered 747 and went very well.

After arrival in Iceland, the belugas were transported by truck to their temporary quarantine basin. There they will be able to acclimatise after this long journey.

If all goes well, they can be transferred to the bay of the whale sanctuary after about 40 days.

Information about the reserve: The remote bay in Iceland has been chosen to provide a more natural environment and a new habitat for these whales. The bay is 32,000 m² wide and has a depth of up to 10 metres.

For more information about the SEA LIFE TRUST Beluga Whale Sanctuary,

The SEA LIFE TRUST is a registered charity (no. 1175859) working globally to protect the world’s oceans and the amazing marine life that lives within them. SEA LIFE TRUST’s vision is of a world where our seas are healthy, protected and full of diverse life.

In partnership with the global SEA LIFE aquarium chain, we are able to reach a huge audience. We run inspiring conservation campaigns and fund projects and education programmes that champion the need for plastic-free oceans, sustainable fishing, effective Marine Protected Areas and an end to over-exploitation of marine life. We also own and operate our own marine wildlife sanctuaries.

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