WSPA, along with local partner Ecoceanos, are celebrating a success in our SOS Sea Lions Chile campaign, with 300 sea lions saved from needless slaughter.
Over 100,000 supporters around the world took action to tell President Piñera of Chile that the mass culling of sea lions is not acceptable.
We’re excited to report that public pressure, along with our lobbying efforts, has been acted on by the Chilean government: the country’s Fisheries Sub Secretariat has announced they are dropping immediate plans to allow the hunting of sea lions in Chilean waters.
SOS: sea lions at risk
Sea lions have been at risk in recent years of capture and live export to 'perform' in aquariums and zoos and of being killed for their body parts.
These aquatic mammals have been blamed for fish scarcity in the region and damage to fishing nets, whereas it is in fact decades of over-fishing that is the real cause of the fish crisis, making the slaughter of sea lions pointless as well as cruel.
This small but significant victory in Chile is a symbolic step forward, with a governmental body being convinced to move away from killing animals, and instead look towards sustainable and humane ways to manage sea lions and their interactions with the fisheries.
Next steps to prevent sea lion cruelty
WSPA and Ecoceanos will continue to campaign together to lobby the Chilean House of Representatives to secure support for a sea lion protection bill – a permanent national policy against sea lion hunts and culls.
We will also investigate and report on irregularities in sea lion population management that could be allowing the illegal trade of these animals.
Thank you to everyone who has supported the campaign so far – your action has already contributed to saving the lives of hundreds of sea lions – and hopefully their permanent protection.