Q. Your Dad, Ric O’Barry, is perhaps the single most effective and renown dolphin activist in the world. How has his example lead you to become directly involved in this work and mission? At what point did you make the conscious decision to “follow in his footsteps” or was this path something that has been innately ingrained in you and/or a part of your life since day one?
A. For the first couple years of my life, we actually had dolphins right at our house. Liberty and Florida were two dolphins that my dad bought from a roadside dolphin attraction in the Florida Everglades. We had a couple of trailers next to a fenced-in lagoon. President Nixon was our next door neighbor. This is where dad first started developing a method for the re-adaption and release of dolphins back into the wild. At age four is when I first went to Taiji, Japan. Working with my dad on the dolphin trail is just something that has always been in my blood. I think dolphins have a greater capacity to understand and process information than humans do. They have a sonar that is dramatically better than anything humans have. They are perfectly adapted for their environment, more so than any other animal. They are also self aware. When dolphins look in a mirror, they understand what they are seeing. There are many places in the world where wild pods and lone dolphins actually seek out interactions with people. This is the most pure form of inter species communication.
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