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Virginia Morell

of SCIENCE

I'm a correspondent for SCIENCE, and an author of four books, including the soon-to-be-released ANIMAL WISE: The Thoughts and Emotions of Our Fellow Creatures (Crown, February 2013).

Should We Import Belugas for Display?

If you’re an animal lover, you’ve probably heard by now about the 18 beluga whales that a group of U.S. marine park and aquarium owners wants to import from Russia. The 18 whales were captured in the wild off the Siberian coast specifically to be put on display—that is, for our entertainment. And that’s where the issue gets sticky. Because we now know from numerous animal behavior studies—in laboratories and in natural habitats–that all mammals are thinking and feeling beings.