They’re creatures of the sea that always look happy. But for these Beluga whales their lives are far from it. Every year in Nilmoguba, a small village on the north of Russia, near the Polar Circle, hundreds are rounded up to begin a sad journey into captivity from which only half survive.
A team of specialists are issued with licenses to catch the Beulgas there and then train them for a life entertaining humans. It takes around six months and – if they live – they will then be transferred to a circus or aquapark somewhere else in Russia where they are expected to perform.
- Hundreds are rounded up every year in Nilmoguba, a small village on the north of Russia
- A team of specialists are licensed to catch and train them for a life entertaining humans
- The whales are then sent to aquaparks and circuses around Russia and expected to perform
- But only one in two of the whales captured manages to adapt to life in captivity
- The ones that don’t, usually die of starvation