In the May 21 issue, former Mystic Aquarium public relations director Peter Glankoff, now a resident of New Mexico, used a letter to the editor to praise the accomplishments of his highly paid former boss, 500,000 $ per year, CEO Dr. Stephen M. Coan. , President and CEO of the Aquarium, who said, “Animal welfare has always been at the forefront of what we do here at Mystic Aquarium.
Is that so?
Meanwhile, Glankoff says challenging Coan’s very high salary is “small.”
Zoos and aquariums remove animals from their natural environment and display them in order to sell tickets. Due to the lack of space, food and veterinary care, these animals can suffer from debilitating health problems. Most die prematurely. Paid spokesperson Glankoff and highly paid Mystic Aquarium officials such as Coan should remember that in 2016, a young adult male beluga named Miki died while in their care. Medical complications have been cited.
Miki died while on display at the Mystic Aquarium for just a few months, on loan from the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. What really happened to this poor creature in Coan’s care?
Mystic Aquarium claims the transfer of whales from Canada is a matter of research. However, as PETA points out, not only does being held in captivity cause extreme mental stress in animals, it is also physically damaging. Chlorine and copper sulfate used to keep tanks clear peeled the skin of dolphins and can cause blindness in dolphins and seals. Have mercy on their poor cousins, the beluga whales, who are held captive at the Mystic Aquarium in what to them is only a giant tub.
The Animal Welfare Institute and other animal advocates point out that the recent importation from Canada could be too stressful, possibly fatal, for belugas and that it would have made more sense for scientists to come to the animals. Instead, Coan had them shipped.
Note that Mystic Aquarium and its highly paid director, Coan, have received major backing from major gambling and entertainment companies such as The Coca-Cola Company, Foxwoods Resort Casino, Resorts World Sentosa, and the gunmaker. United Technologies Corporation. Coan sits on the Connecticut Tourism Commission and the Governor’s Tourism Advisory Council, both of which promote the Connecticut circus-like display of hapless and helpless wild animals at the Mystic Aquarium.
Why is this allowed?
And who defends Coan. His “retired” public relations flack and still paid advertising consultant, Mr. Glankoff, whose experience includes promoting marketing at “Sin City” in Las Vegas, a short-term stint at the Bronx Zoo, before his arrival at Mystic Seaport and Mystic Aquarium. He retired to New Mexico on a paid aquarium consultant contract.
Could Stephen Coan have found someone with less integrity to sing his dubious praises than Peter Glankoff?
Dr Richard Parker is a former professor of applied zoological sciences at the Earls Institute of Animal Psychology in Montreal, Canada, and is now retired.