marineland canada

Recent job postings suggest Marineland isn't closing down after all

Animal lovers everywhere rejoiced last year when rumours swirled that Marineland of Canada was finally shutting down, but it appears based on a new spate of job openings that the Niagara Falls theme park is still planning to open for another season.

Well-known Marineland whistleblower and former employee Phil Demers publicized last fall that the park was at the end of its 60-year life thanks to a rush of advocacy efforts that led to renewed calls for it to close.

Multiple heartbreaking videos of the despondent, lonely orca in Marineland's care garnered a ton of attention, while various groups launched legal complaints that led to criminal charges for using captive cetaceans like dolphins and whales for entertainment purposes.

An inspection by Ontario's Animal Welfare Services also concluded that poor living conditions were putting Marineland's animals in distress.

But, despite the fact that Demers cited "an inside source" that said the attraction wouldn't be reopening after it closed for winter 2021-2022, the brand has 42 positions listed on its job board, ranging from food services and grounds crew personnel to ride operators and animal caregivers.

It also held a job fair back in April.

Demers, of The Walrus Whisperer fame, had asserted in September 2021 that the deteriorating park was listed for sale for $300 million due to the fact that that Marineland couldn't afford to operate it — something he still stands by.

"They were in absolute financial peril last year. Half the rides didn’t work. Whatever has become since then will be clearer once we're able to see the state of the park," he told blogTO on Tuesday.

"If they open, it won't be to prosper, it will be to buy time before their ultimate end. It's still game over for Marineland."

Park representatives have stated in social media comments that they hope to open as soon as May 21, though tickets are not available online and no opening date has been confirmed on their website or any social media channels.

Marineland has called the ongoing court case against them "unreasonable political pressure to use policing powers."

"Marineland understands why ideologically driven activists would file a police complaint, and appreciates the pressure the Niagara Regional Police were put under to lay such a charge. We look forward to the opportunity to defend ourselves in a court of law," a press release on the subject states.

While the company did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publication, Demers is still confident that they won't be in operation for much longer, as a conviction in court would end many of their performances and they are (based on chatter online) widely hated for the practices that have come to light over the years.

Two whales sold by Marineland to a U.S. aquarium have also died in recent months, while one was put into intensive care, the circumstances around which are now under investigation.

"Maybe they're waiting to see in what capacity they can even operate," he says. "Feels as though Marineland themselves don't know with certainty what they're doing anymore."

Lead photo by

@marinelandofcanada


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