'Free [to dream]' is an animal's haunting tale about the Queensland Shark Control Program

2023-05-17 05:52 AM by Envoy: Shark Cull–  3m read

Complementing the powerful narrative of our film "Envoy: Shark Cull" is the short animated film "Free [to dream]" by Heather Platt, known as @heatherhill85, on Instagram. Heather shares her film to help raise awareness of outdated shark mitigation practices on Australia's east coast. Importantly "Free [to dream]" shows us we must recognise that these lethal practices tragically impact the lives of individual animals behind the statistics.

"Free [to dream]" is an extraordinary short film inspired by the true story of a juvenile dolphin caught by the Queensland Shark Control Program at Main Beach on the Gold Coast in 2014.

Through mesmerising animation, audiences are transported to the moment when a baby dolphin, full of curiosity and innocence, is tragically hooked on a lethal drumline intended to catch large sharks. The heart-wrenching scenes unfold as the hook pierces her body, leaving a permanent mark on her tender soul. In real life, the hook on the drumline punctured her abdomen, and she lost sight in her right eye due to rubbing from the chain on the drumline. But, as in real life, the dolphin portrayed in "Free [to dream]" will live out her days captive at Sea World on Queensland's Gold Coast.

While "Envoy: Shark Cull" sheds light on the overarching issue of shark control programs and their detrimental impact on marine life, as well as their ineffectiveness as beach safety devices, "Free [to dream]" provides a poignant glimpse into one animal's journey. It serves as a reminder that behind the statistics and policies, human actions forever alter the lives of individual animals.

"Free [to dream]" and creative works by others expose the true cost of shark culling programs and are hauntingly beautiful odes to the plight of the countless creatures entangled in the web of human indifference. These films and others seek to enlighten and ignite a spark of change within the hearts of all who bear witness, for only through collective action can we find a balance between human activity and the protection of animals.

The scenes in "Free [to dream]" compel individuals to demand an end to outdated shark control practices.

Together, let us wield the power of empathy, knowledge, and collective action to protect the creatures that inhabit our coastal waters. With every email sent and every letter delivered, we inch closer to a world where marine life is cherished, protected, and allowed to thrive, unburdened by the legacy of cruelty and ignorance.

We've prepared an email template for you, and no matter where you live, it will automatically be addressed to the people who can make change happen based on your location. However, if you'd like to make a more significant impact, type or hand write the letter and be sure to personalise it, then send it to the relevant decision-makers. Individual or personalised letters have much more impact than template-style emails and letters. The time to send your letter is now.

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