Pressure from Shedd aquarium squelches expose

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 1992:

CHICAGO, Illinois––The sched-
uled October 10 debut of Modern Animal
News TV on WGBO-TV Channel 66 was
twice postponed and then cancelled by station
management under pressure from the Shedd
Aquarium. The program was to focus on the
capture of two beluga whales in northern
Manitoba, Canada, last August, and their
subsequent death at the Shedd on September
25, apparently from overdoses of worm med-
icine.

“The most controversial aspect of
the feature,” MAN-TV producer Lair Scott
told ANIMAL PEOPLE, is unique footage
provided by the Manitoba Animal Rights
Coalition.” This footage, unlike some circu-
lated by the Shedd, “recorded the more bru-
tal aspects of the belugas’ capture,” accord-
ing to Scott, “including what the captors
describe as a ‘water rodeo.'”
Scott said much of the footage “had
already been broadcast by WMAQ-TV
Channel 5 and other local stations at the time
of the belugas’ deaths.” The MAN-TV fea-
ture also included footage borrowed with per-
mission from Chicago-area affiliates of NBC
and ABC, as well as WGN, the satelite sta-
tion owned by the Chicago Tribune Co.,
which is a major Shedd supporter.
The Shedd claimed meanwhile that
Scott misrepresented himself as a WGBO-TV
news staffer in obtaining slides and video
footage from the aquarium.
The MAN-TV feature was to have
aired as the 86th episode of Earth Network, a
regular WGBO-TV environmental news
series.
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