AZA News Releases

Statement from AZA on Dolphin Sanctuary Announcement by National Aquarium

Silver Spring, MD - This morning, National Aquarium, located in Baltimore, an Association of Zoos & Aquariums accredited member, announced plans to create a dolphin sanctuary for its Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Kris Vehrs, Interim President & CEO of AZA, issued the following statement regarding National Aquarium’s announcement:

“Every member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums must make animal welfare decisions appropriate for the animals in its care. National Aquarium has been researching the possibility of moving the Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in its care to a seaside location and is now ready to take the next step. The National Aquarium will be working closely with the applicable federal and state agencies as they undertake the relocation and as the animals adapt to their new environment.”

About AZA

Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, animal welfare, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the accrediting body for the top zoos and aquariums in the United States and seven other countries. Look for the AZA accreditation logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. Members of AZA are leaders in saving species and your link to helping animals all over the world. To learn more, visit

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