Tuesday 11 August 2020

Dutch government again urged to act to free Morgan the orca

Morgan in her Spanish tank. Photo: www.freemorgan.org

Morgan in her Spanish tank. Photo: www.freemorgan.org

A group campaigning to have a ‘Dutch’ orca released from an amusement park on Tenerife have applied to have the key document which allowed her to be sent to Spain annulled, arguing that the terms of her transfer have been breached.

The orca Morgan was found in a severely weakened state in the Wadden Sea in 2010 and sent to the Dolphinarium in Harderwijk to recover.

The then-junior economic affairs minister Henk Bleker, who was responsible for Morgan, decided she could not be returned to the wild and she was sent to the Loro Parque in Spain instead. The financial terms of the move have never been revealed.

The original European certificate approving the transfer stated that Morgan would be used for research purposes.

However, the orca now performs tricks for the public and there are severe concerns about her health, the Free Morgan Foundation says. For example, the condition of her teeth has deteriorated enormously compared to the time of her capture.

Earlier this year she was filmed deliberately beaching herself and bashing herself against the edge of a holding tank. In addition, the foundation is concerned efforts are being made to breed Morgan, which would also be in breach of the certificate.

They have now instructed Amsterdam law firm Van Den Biesen Kloostra Advocaten to apply to have the export licence annulled.

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