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A Whale of a Case Study

Our advocacy team was happy to help Mystic Aquarium with a successful advocacy campaign to import five beluga whales from Canada.


Mystic Aquarium’s Arctic Coast is the largest outdoor Beluga Whale habitat in the United States for studying the whales’ protection and conservation in the wild.

Mystic Aquarium petitioned the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to import five beluga whales from Marineland Canada. Born in captivity, releasing these whales into the wild was not an option. Moving from overcrowded conditions to Mystic Aquarium’s larger habitat would give these whales a better life while learning about conservation in the wild for the endangered Belugas.

The Plan:
Majority Strategies helped encourage marine biologists and other scientists to support the move and inform NOAA about the benefits of the Mystic Aquarium plan. NOAA granted the petition and agreed that Mystic Aquarium’s research would “contribute knowledge and inform management and recovery of beluga whale populations in the wild …” and approved moving the whales to the Arctic Coast habitat in Connecticut.

“We have an ethical obligation to reverse the devastating trend of extinction for whale populations. To do so, we must take steps to rapidly advance research to help whales and other cetaceans survive. There is no better place in which to conduct research than Mystic Aquarium – home to the world’s leading marine mammal scientists, animal behaviorists and veterinarians who provide continuous, compassionate care for the belugas they study. Majority Strategies was very engaged and effective.”
– Dr. Stephen Coan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sea Research Foundation, Inc.

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