Australia first study
Dolphin Marine Conservation Park (DMCP) is excited to welcome world-renowned animal behaviour expert Dr Isabella Clegg to Coffs Harbour.
Dr Clegg conducted her PhD on determining the best way to assess the welfare of dolphins residing under human care and devised the C-Well model, which
is short for cetacean welfare.
Dr Clegg now travels the world consulting to marine parks to ensure dolphins have the best possible care.
“The assessment technique is a breakthrough for the industry,” said Mr Terry Goodall, Managing Director at DMCP. “In effect, this will enable us to
more thoroughly measure the dolphins’ welfare. This is the first time that a study of this kind has been conducted in the southern hemisphere and
we are proud to be at the forefront of cetacean welfare globally,” said Mr Goodall.
Dr Clegg’s visit is part of the sea sanctuary feasibility study that is being jointly undertaken with Action for Dolphins (AFD) and World Animal Protection
In addition to assessing the overall welfare of the dolphins, the findings of the study will provide an insight into the individual personalities of
each dolphin, and how they may react and adapt in a sea sanctuary environment.
“Until recently, there have not been accurate methods of showing whether or not animals under human care have a good quality of life,” said Dr Clegg.
“I’ll be using objective measures to assess the dolphins’ welfare in their current environment. This will help to make decisions about their future
and whether they would be good candidates for possible relocation to a sea sanctuary in the ocean.”
“I’m very pleased to be in Coffs Harbour to conduct this Australia-first study.”