Canada
Ontario SPCA clears Marineland, park says

Credits: MIKE DIBATTISTA/QMI AGENCY

MATT DAY | QMI AGENCY

NIAGARA FALLS, ON - The Ontario SPCA has found no evidence of animal abuse at Marineland and no charges have been laid, according to a statement released by the marine-animal theme park Friday.

Marineland issued a one-page summary reacting to what it says were the findings in an OSPCA report.

The OSPCA's four-month investigation into allegations of animal abuse and neglect at the Niagara Falls, Ont., park resulted after former employees and animal activists raised the issue in the media.

Alison Cross, OSPCA's senior manager of communications, said her organization hadn't released anything publicly as of Friday.

"We have not made any public comments because the investigation is still ongoing," she said.

But Marineland's statement said the OSPCA issued a number of orders to Marineland - none requiring immediate action.

Those orders included examining the eyes of the park's seals and the marks on Baker, one of its sea lions.

Marineland said the marks on the 28-year-old sea lion are "very old" and that one is an identification tattoo placed on him in the US prior to its arrival at the park.

Following the OSPCA investigation, Marineland said it will be expanding its existing deer and elk shelters to account for the recent increase in the size of the herds.

The clean bill of health from the OSPCA comes during the same week Marineland said it has agreed to join a working group with the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums and Ontario's Ministry of the Environment to determine the fate of the remains of animals that have died.

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