Dolphin Discovery rearms in St Lucia - but not just anywhere?

The captive dolphin business

In 2002-2003 a captive dolphin project caused wide concern on St Lucia and throughout the Caribbean; it was abandoned largely due to the efforts of Jane Tipson, a St. Lucian personality and ecologist who ran the renowned restaurant "Jambe de Bois" in the Pigeon Island National Park, whose cultural and natural attributes are under the caring authority of the St. Lucia National Trust and with its natural beauty has attracted throngs of visitors for decades.

Nature tourism and whale watching in St. Lucia

St. Lucia is home to a rich natural biodiversity both on land and at sea. In 1996 Jane founded the St Lucia Whale and Dolphin Watching Association - which since then has thrived - together with The St Lucia Animal Protection Society, working successfully with government on the creation of long needed model legislation for whale watching and animal welfare. That same year she co-founded the East Caribbean Coalition for the Environmental Awareness (ECCEA) an international NGO dedicated to Caribbean communities and their environment. Jane spoke out in defense of the environment, wildlife and all créatures, in the media at home and abroad. In 2003 she campaigned naturally against marine mammals in captivity and dolphin parks run in a global commercial enterprise context.

Jane was brutally assassinated during this period in September 2003 and the circumstances of her death, investigated by Scotland Yard and the FBI, were carried internationally; the London Sunday Times editing a major article "Death of a Dolphin Lover".

An extraordinarily dark message

Jane’s funeral took place on Pigeon island as a tribute to her life there and the work she had accomplished for St Lucia, the Caribbean, the environment and wildlife. Hundreds of persons from around the world paid homage to Jane and her quest for a kinder future for all, but at an ultimate cost. To put a dolphin park on Pigeon Island would be an extraordinarily dark message to St. Lucians and the world community. Prime Minister Chastanet may not be aware of the above facts, of Jane Tipson, her work for St. Lucia – and the aura she left behind her. In light of these and the growing concern at both local and international level it would seem more judicious to support valuable national initiative rather than maintaining a project that will become thornier with time.