London: Animal protection groups say they have successfully suspended the recording of a TV series "Dolphins with the Stars" in Portugal.
According to the Born Free Foundation, the show involves celebrities training captive dolphins to perform routines and tricks for live audiences, reported BBC online.
Campaigners argued that the show was exploitative, and also contravened zoo regulations. The broadcaster and the zoo said it had educational and scientific value.
A slick trailer for the series states that ten celebrities each "team up" with a dolphin and the teams "live together" for a month.
Trainers and choreographers work with each pair to create a show that is eventually judged by a live audience.
"Dolphins with the Stars" has already been broadcast in Lithuania and it is thought that the rights have been bought in Spain and Italy and optioned across Europe.
The Portuguese version was being filmed at Zoomarine in Guia, in the Algarve, and was due to be broadcast on June 20 by SIC, a national television network.