The environmental body, the WWF, says renewed plans in Solomon Islands to export live dolphins is bizarre.
Solomon Islands had previously placed a ban on the export after an international outcry, but the current government is reported to be supportive of a resumption of the trade.
The executive director of WWF New Zealand, Christopher Howe, says the export of live dolphins is cruel.
"Exporting of live dolphins is quite a bizarre thing to do. Quite apart from the animal welfare issues, it would be much more sustainable for the Solomon Islands to leave their dolphins where they are and develop sustainable tourism activities. Dolphin watching is a very good opportunity for local communities to develop long-term income generating activities."
Christopher Howe says international aid organisations could assist Solomon Islands develop a thriving dolphin watching industry.