Nature: An Uneasy Dip with the Dolphins

Swimming with Flipper is fun, but is it unwarranted exploitation?

I am feeling slightly ridiculous as I sit on a dock that juts into an artificial lagoon and stroke a dolphin's nose with my feet. The stroking is a handshake of sorts, a way of introducing me and four other people at the Hyatt Waikoloa in Hawaii to the dolphins with whom we will be swimming. We are the latest of roughly 15,000 customers who have paid $55 for half-hour frolics with six dolphins since the Hyatt program began a year ago. The enterprise, one of four operating in the U.S., is so popular that spots have to be awarded by...

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