Oceans

Another season of blood and death in Taiji

I was hoping for a blood-free weekend out of Taiji, Japan. I was hoping the fishermen would continue to come back to the harbor without any dolphins, but this weekend marked the first deaths in the 2012-2013 dolphin hunting season. A pod of pilot whales were found on Friday and driven into shore. The nets were dropped and the family of about 25 or 26 were all trapped, awaiting their fate. They were held overnight in the cove to allow trainers to come select the animals that they wanted to buy. Three of the pilot whales were chosen for a life a captivity yesterday. The rest of their family, about 21-23 others, were all slaughtered and dragged to the butcher house.

I cannot believe how shocked I still am after a slaughter has taken place. I have been following the dolphin hunts in Taiji for a couple of years now, but it is still a somber and dark day for me when a family of these peaceful creatures are killed. It is senseless and barbaric and such a shameful moment for those involved. My heart goes out to the 3 juveniles taken into captivity this weekend. They were first chased into the cove by boats and trapped there, then separated from their pod by loud and forceful humans, and finally they had to listen as their mothers and family members were all killed. What a tragedy they should never have had to endure.

Currently, there is a pod a bottlenose dolphins trapped in the cove with a second one still trying desperately to get away. I am sending my hopes and thoughts to those innocent animals and I truly hope they get away and do not face the same fate as the pilot whales and the pod trapped already.

 

Thank you for reading.

Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Sea Shepherd, Whales | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Japan Dolphin Day 2012

It is hard to believe that another dolphin hunting season is upon us. I feel like the waters in Taiji only recently turned blue after the slaughters of last year’s hunts. So far the boats have gone out twice looking for a pod to herd into the cove and slaughter. They have been unsuccessful in their search both times. So it is a good start to the season for the dolphins. On August 31st, 2012, a group of amazing people gathered in Seattle to protest the start of these hunts. We stood together with our signs to bring awareness to the people of Seattle, but also to the world. Cities from across the globe held demonstrations in front of Japanese Consulates and Embassies to send a message to the Japanese Government. The message was: The World is Watching. We also delivered a photographic journal to the Consulate. It was a In Memory Of photo album filled with photos from the dophin hunts in Taiji. It was created to show them exactly why were standing there and what we had gathered to protest. I hate to think we will be standing there again next year, but I have hope for the future and I have hope for dolphins. These are some pictures from this year’s protest in Seattle. I will be on the front lines in Taiji one day soon. I will be another voice for these animals and I will make sure the world remembered they lived and that they died.

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Thank you for reading!

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Sea Shepherd | Leave a comment

Georgia Aquarium’s Shameful Permit Request

I discovered this weekend that the Georgia Aquarium has applied for a permit to obtain and import 18 wild beluga whales. These whales have already been caught in Russia and now the captivity industry simply needs to get them into the United States in order to start making money off their lives. The Georgia Aquarium has a great deal of interest in this especially since the death of a baby beluga whale at their facility only days after it was born. The issue that is creating the need to import these wild animals is genetic diversity. The captivity world is running out of breeding options and therefore must create bogus and false statements in order to apply for import permits. One such reason they give surrounds conservation. Conservation? Seriously? Taking wild animals out of the ocean and placing them into an entertainment park is supposed to enhance conservation? I cannot believe the captivity industry thinks people are going to buy that line. If it was conservation they wanted then instead of spending $2 million to research how to bring wild animals into the US, they would spend that money on protecting the wild populations and our oceans.

The other reason they claim to need these wild animals is for research. The research angle always makes me laugh because there is no true and significant research that can be conducted on a captive marine mammal. In captivity these animals cannot eat, swim, play, socialize, or even just exist naturally. It is shameful to even put themselves into a category with true scientists that study animals in their natural habitats.

Since word of this permit application got out the GA has been trying to convince their fans and the public that what’s being said isn’t true and they are basically victims in this. So, here is what I have to say about that.

Georgia Aquarium, the accusations against you are not inaccurate or false. It is simple. The GA has acquired wild belugas from Russia and wants to import them into the United States. It does not matter who took them from the ocean first. These were wild animals and you have decided to purchase them as if they are property to be bought and sold as pleased. There will be no true research done on them at a captive facility, including yours. Captive animals do swim, eat, socialize, or behave like a true wild animals. They swim in artificial water, eat dead fish that are filled with medicines to help with the ailments related to the stress captivity causes, they do not have a natural family group to socialize with and they cannot ever swim the distances like those of their wild counterparts. Your facility is using these animals for profits and entertainment. I do not care if you attempt to hide behind a 501c3 status. If it was education you were truly interested in you would not charge the astronomical amount of $169.95 per adult, senior, or child to interact with belugas. Please do not attempt to fool those of us who know exactly what the captivity industry is all about. One day everyone will see all of you for what your really are and it is then that marine mammal captivity will become another dark spot on human history.

Please take a minute to sign this petition to help these belugas.

http://www.change.org/petitions/noaa-don-t-let-the-georgia-aquarium-import-wild-belugas-to-the-us

 

Thanks for reading!

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Whales | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Japan Dolphin Day 2012!

It’s hard to believe it, but the 2012-2013 Japan dolphin hunting season is upon us. It feels like the sadness that spun from the traumatic events of last years hunting season hasn’t even gone away. And yet, here we are, facing another season of death and capture in the waters of Taiji.

The start of the hunting season will once again bring together people from all over the globe who want to see Japan end this slaughter.

Events are currently being planned all over the world so be sure and go to one near you and make your voice heard.

Tell Japan to end this for good.

Tell the world that you stand against captivity. You can make difference.

Check out this link to get information on a protest happening near you. Protests will take place on August 31, 2012 in the afternoon.

I truly hope everyone can make time to go out and support dolphins living wild and free in our oceans.

 

And don’t forget to check out my fundraising page for my upcoming trip to Taiji, Japan.

 

Thank you for reading!

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, dam guardians, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Sea Shepherd, Uncategorized, Whales | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Yup….SeaWorld Still Sucks

Sully, the pilot whale dies after being forced into a life of captivity.

In 2009, a pilot whale became beached near Aruba. People of course showed up to “help” and the pilot whale, now called Sully, was taken to a local aquarium. It didn’t take long for SeaWorld to discover the animal and offer to “adopt” the whale. Of course SeaWorld would take him because they had determined he was “non-releasable” and he could bring in money for them despite the fact that he was a wild animal.

SeaWorld can no longer take wild animals from the ocean but they can acquire them through a rescue. So Sully was flown from the Caribbean Islands to SeaWorld San Diego via a FedEx plane. He survived with SeaWorld for only a couple years. Sully died on May 23, 2012 from complications due to a sunburn. In the wild, whales and dolphins only spend time a fraction of time at the surface and spend over 80% of their time below the water exploring, playing, and eating. In captivity the animals have nothing to do but sit at the surface and float and are therefore exposed to the sun day in and day out.

It is just another reason to not keep marine mammals in captivity and another part of their life that is not natural.

Yup…SeaWorld still sucks and they are still killing animals and sentencing others to a life behind concrete and glass, one “rescue” at a time.

 

Thanks for reading.

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Whales | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Wasteful Fact Wednesday!

This weekend I went to a talk by Captain Moore about plastic waste in our oceans and I was HORRIFIED! I thought I knew how bad things were, but he took it to another level. The waste and destruction in our oceans has become so problematic that it is beyond clean up. The only option we have to try and save this planet is to start cutting off the problem at the source. The source is wasteful people and their obsession with plastic. One such destructive object is the plastic bag.

The estimates I kept finding online was that globally there are 500,000,000,000 bags used EVERY SINGLE YEAR! That averages out to about 1,000,000 plastic bags consumed and wasted every single minute. That is incredibly insane, wasteful, and avoidable.

Plastic does not go away. It simply breaks into smaller and smaller pieces, contaminating soil and water along the way.

Here in Washington State we have plastic bag bans in three cities (including Seattle) that will all take effect this summer. A state wide ban is also being considered. If it passes Washington will be the first state in the country to ban these terrible bags.

It seems that bringing your own bag into the store is a no brainer. Everyone should be doing that at this point. It is the easiest way to make a HUGE difference for our planet. You can buy them at the store or even look up your favorite organization online and purchase a bag from them. You can support a great cause and do your part for the planet at the same time.

Thanks for reading!

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, plastic, pollution, Uncategorized, waste | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Journey Towards Taiji….

Okay guys, it is official. I have decided to go to Taiji, Japan during this year’s dolphin hunting season. I am aiming to go sometime in January 2013, but I need to start fundraising for the trip. I sent in my Cove Guardian application to be a part of Sea Shepherd’s on-going campaign, Infinite Patience. Since my application was accepted I must now start the process of FUNDRAISING!

I am very excited to begin this new journey towards helping the dolphins of Japan even more. In order to stop this annual slaughter of dolphins we must show the world what is happening. People need to see how their tickets to Sea World directly contributes to the deaths of these magnificent creatures.

I have started a fundraising page with the website Go Fund Me. I needed an easy way for friends and family (and hopefully some animal loving strangers) to help support me in this dream.

So check out the donation page HERE. (www.gofundme.com/stopthedolphinslaughter)

Thank you so much for reading and I will continue documenting the steps in this journey right here at World Wide Waves.

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Sea Shepherd, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Great Ocean Video!

I came across this oldie, but goodie today. I have watched it multiple times because it is so good. Brian Skerry is an underwater photographer who captured both the beauty and the horror of our oceans.

 

Click the link to view the video.

Brian Skerry’s TED Talk

Categories: Animal Welfare, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, pastic, pollution, Shark Finning, Sharks, waste, Whales | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An Update to Morgan’s Timeline

I have made a couple of updates to the timeline about Morgan.

You can click here to go to the timeline and see the new updates at the bottom.

Thanks for reading!

~Rachel

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Marine Wildlife, Oceans, Orca, Whales | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wasteful Fact Wednesday!

WATER BOTTLES – Did you know that the useĀ  of plastic water bottles results in 60 million water bottles a day to be manufactured, transported, and then disposed of? Almost 90% are not recycled or reused. Bottled water produces up to 1.5 million tons of plastic waste per year. According to Food and Water Watch, that plastic requires up to 47 million gallons of oil per year to produce. And due to the slow decay rate of plastic, the majority of all plastics ever produced still exists some place on this planet. A lot ends up in our oceans, polluting them and harming marine wildlife.

Some estimates say it takes 3 liters of water to fill a 1 liter water bottle. That is A LOT of water waste especially when so many people in this world still do not have access to clean water.

So what can you do? Well start by NOT buying plastic water bottles. There are so many options for reusable bottles now. Check out these ones. I have one myself and absolutely love it!

Oh and one more thing, Pepsi’s Aquafina and Coke’s Dasani water is basically just tap water that has gone through a filter. Every time you buy those you are spending your hard earned money on a bottle of tap water.

Categories: Animal Welfare, Oceans, waste | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

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