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November 27, 2014

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Demonstrators protest dolphin captivity at the Mirage

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Steve Marcus

Michelle Lord, center, and other activists picket in front of the Mirage Sunday, Aug. 31, 2014. About 30 people came out to protest the annual capture and killing of dolphins in Taiji, Japan.

Dolphin Activists Protest At Mirage

Christina Buffington wears a dolphin pendant during a protest in front of the Mirage Sunday, Aug. 30, 2014. About 30 people came out to protest the annual capture and killing of dolphins in Taiji, Japan. Launch slideshow »

A group of around 30 protesters lined up outside of the Mirage today to call on the casino to release the dolphins from Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat.

Decked out with colorful signs, activists gathered at around 5 p.m. near the casino’s main entrance off of Las Vegas Boulevard to support the Free the Mojave Dolphins campaign, which argues that keeping the dolphins at the resort amounts to trapping them unnaturally in the middle of the Mojave desert.

Protester Michelle Marchese said one of the central issues is the amount of space the dolphins are given at the habitat. No matter how large the tanks are, she said, there is no way to duplicate the size of the ocean.

“It’s the equivalent of a human spending its life in a bathtub,” she said.

Cecilia Mialon, who co-founded the Mojave campaign, said she was also at the Mirage to bring greater awareness to the annual six-month dolphin hunt that takes place in Taiji, Japan. The hunt captures dolphins for food and commercial habitats.

The Mirage could not immediately be reached for comment.

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