Posts Tagged With: dolphins

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

A Devestating Day in Taiji

Pantropical Spotted Dolphin

I was out with friends yesterday when I used my phone to go online and check on the status of the banger boats in Taiji. Shocked and devastated is an understatement of how I felt when I read the boats had returned and that the fishermen had killed 98 dolphins. 98…..98 dolphins were killed. I couldn’t believe it. I actually refreshed the page and then looked at several other pages to make sure that the correct number had been released.

98 Pantropical Spotted dolphins were brutally slaughtered in the Cove on February 27. None were taken for captivity. The lives stolen from this world included mothers, babies, and juveniles. Tim Burns who is in Taiji as a Cove Monitor with Save Japan Dolphins described the day’s events.

“Today as I watched the pod being pushed into the Cove, I could see many juvenile dolphins.  After splitting the pod into two groups, the hunters began the slaughter.  The first wave was driven, pushed, and in a few instances tail roped and dragged under the tarps.  After about 15 minuets the second group was just as brutally corralled under the tarps. I noticed one swim back out from under the tarp, as it was partially paralyzed.  It could only swim in one direction.  The hunters just allowed it to swim out in front of the tarps for about 5-10 minutes.  Once there was no fight left, he was tail wrapped and pulled back under.”

Thankfully this hunting season is coming to a close early so the killings will soon end. I am sure that is why the fishermen decided to take the lives of so many dolphins in one day. They showed their blatant disregard for life and their disrespect for other sentient beings in this world. I went to bed that night and dreamed of Taiji and the dolphins that have died there. I know I will go there myself one day soon and be a witness and a voice to those who are voiceless.

Pantropical Spotted dolphins

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

Erwin is FREE!

It has been a busy week for those involved with the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Yesterday a judge denied the Institute for Cetacean Research’s attempts to keep Sea Shepherd out of the Southern ocean and out of their way when whaling. They tried to claim that SSCS has no authority in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary and hoped that a U.S court would keep them away. Luckily the judge plans to look at exactly why the whalers are there as much as he will look at the SSCS’s presence.

In even BETTER news, Erwin Vermeulen was released from a Japanese prison today! Erwin was in jail after being falsely accused of pushing an employee at the Dolphin Resort while taking photographs. The judge signed an order to have him released. He has to go back to court on February 22nd to get the verdict of the assault charges from the alleged push. No jail time has been requested though. Only a $1,300 fine has been requested. Like I have said before, it is pretty obvious this entire arrest has been to try to make the Cove Guardians look like the bad guys.

Luckily, a Japanese judge saw through that and allowed Erwin to leave and go back to his duties as a volunteer for Sea Shepherd.

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

Taiji

The first week of February did not end well in Taiji, Japan. The cove turned blood red as the fisherman slaughtered 30 striped dolphins. Their lives and families were ripped apart in just one afternoon. Thank goodness the following week was a little better for the dolphins of Japan. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday the fisherman caught no dolphins.

However, on Tuesday, February 7, the waters again turned red with the blood of Risso’s dolphins. On this day the trainers were also at the Cove working with the fisherman to claim the lives they wanted for captivity. Two Risso’s dolphins were taken that day for a life of imprisonment, but not until they had to witness the deaths of their family members. The count was 22 Risso’s killed. 2 Risso’s bought by the trainers.

Tuesday was also an interesting and stressful day for the Cove Guardians who are in Taiji with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. The police held the CG and ended up restricting the use of all hand held radios. They had been using the same radios for two years so it appears the police of Taiji are once again just getting desperate to find ways that the protesters are breaking the law.

This week also ended in a sad and tragic way. The fisherman found a pod of striped dolphins on Saturday. They drove them into the Cove and slaughtered all 30 adults. After the family was dead, they drove the juveniles and babies back out to the sea. They have no pod or mothers to keep them safe, so their fate will ultimately be death. They will starve or get taken by a predator. Tim Burns of Save Japan Dolphins was at the Cove this day:

“Now the Taiji dolphin hunters have driven these young dolphins from the open sea to land, killed their entire family in front of them, and condemned them to die at sea.”

This killing season only has 7 more weeks until it ends. As of Sunday, February 12, the fisherman have reached their quota for Risso’s and striped dolphins. They cannot hunt those species anymore.

We’ll see what this new week brings for the dolphins of Taiji. But whatever happens there will be 14 Cove Guardians standing by to witness it all.

Cove Guardians in Taiji, Japan

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

The Waters of Taiji and A Hero in Jail

The end of Saturday in the US means that Sunday is already underway in Japan. This weekend will prove to be a good one for dolphins because Saturday was the usual day off for the dolphin killing fishermen and Sunday the boats will stay docked again due to strong winds. However, it was still a bad week in the small town of Taiji, Japan with several dolphins losing their lives and families. The fishermen slaughtered and stole the lives of 14 Risso’s dolphins this week. They destroyed the lives of 7 others who will be sold into the life of marine mammal slavery. I will never understand how the people that work for marine parks continue to contribute to these mass dolphin slaughters in Taiji. At least we can all enjoy the weekend knowing that the dolphins are safe.

Risso's Dolphin

 

Erwin has been in jail since 12/16/2011

Another sad situation in Taiji revolves around a man named Erwin Vermeulen. Erwin is a volunteer with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and was in Japan documenting the dolphin slaughters. On December 16, 2011, an employee of the Dolphin Resort accused Erwin of pushing him while filming a dolphin transfer. There were no witnesses to this accusation and there were clearly no injuries but the police still arrested Erwin. He has been in jail since the arrest 46 days ago. He can only be released if he confesses which he refuses to do. It’s pretty clear that the Japanese police are simply trying to make it seem as though the volunteers at the Cove are violent and aggressive. All the volunteers in Taiji know that any aggressive action towards the dolphin killers will get you arrested and kicked out of the country. There was video early in this hunting season that showed another Sea Shepherd volunteer getting pushed by a fisherman. The police did nothing with that individual and yet Erwin has been behind bars eating only white rice and having no contact with family or friends. He faces up to two years in prison if convicted. Two years in jail for a “push”. That is absolutely absurd in any country.

 

The trial is supposed to begin on February 2nd and a verdict is expected by February 22.

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

Happy Blue Waters in Taiji

It was a rough start to the new year having over 60 dolphins brutally killed in the cove of Taiji. But this week Mother Nature has been kind to the dolphins by delivering bad weather to the fishermen. No dolphins were killed Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday of this week. It was a huge sigh of relief to everyone watching the updates from volunteers on the ground. Especially after the events from the beginning of week.

Striped Dolphins

On Janurary 14th, the fishermen found a large pod of striped dolphins off the coast of Taiji. They began driving the pod in and eventually got them into the cove. The volunteers could tell it was a large pod of striped dolphins. Miraculously, the fishermen let a majority of the dolphins go and drove them back out into the sea. But with this gift of life still came death. Over 30 dolphins were slaughtered in the cove that day. According to reports some of their family members were trying to get back to them, not wanting to leave them behind. One dolphin tried to escape but was of course caught and taken back behind the tarps to be killed with the rest. It was bittersweet to see some live and some die. Those that died experienced violent last moments on this earth and those that were chased back into the ocean were left to mourn their family members that were viciously taken away.

I hope the rain, wind, and rough waters continue to keep the dolphins of Taiji safe.

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

The Sad and Lonely Duo in Taiji

Today I watched a video that Ric O’Barry made at the Taiji Whale Museum. He was able to film the two dolphins that live within the confines of the world’s smallest dolphin tank. He, and a couple other volunteers of Save Japan Dolphins, named them ‘Sad’ and ‘Lonely’. “Because that’s exactly what they are”. I had seen pictures of the two dolphins before and I knew of their tiny tank. I’ve shared the online petition to get them freed from that miserable place on Facebook several times. And although I’d already seen them in pictures, seeing the video footage took it to a whole new level of disgust and sadness. It was difficult watching their bodies barely moving in the water, seeing their heads resting listlessly on the bare wall, and just witnessing the sad existence they are forced to live. The emotions I felt nearly caught me off guard because I expose myself to these types of stories, photographs and videos on a daily basis. I stay as updated as possible about the marine world so that I can share it with people and educate them. I can only imagine how difficult it was for Ric to see those poor dolphins living in such atrocious and inhumane conditions and then having to turn his back and leave. He works so hard to expose the truth behind marine mammal captivity and he is definitely a hero for our world.

Below you can watch the video that Ric made of Sad and Lonely. It is an amazing thing what he does. Please watch the video and then sign the petition.

Sad & Lonely at the Taiji Whale Museum

Please take just a moment to sign this petition to help save these dolphins from this miserable life. As Ric says in the video, the dolphins will probably never be released back into the wild but there are sea pens just yards away from where they are now. They can have real sea water and see the sky and the sun.

Petition: Taiji Whale Museum: PLEASE give the 2 spotted dolphins a larger home

If you want to go a step further to help these dolphins you can write to the World Aquarium and Zoological Association and ask the director, Gerald Dick to do something to help these dolphins.

Gerald Dick, PHD

IUCN Conservation Centre

RUE Mauverney 28

CH-1196 Gland

Switzerland

Email: secretairat@waza.org

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

WATCH THE COVE

In case you haven’t yet…..watch THE COVE. Educate yourself about dolphins, captivity, SeaWorld, and the largest slaughter of dolphins in the world.

The only way to end it is to open the world’s eyes up and awaken society.

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

Red Waters in the Cove…..again

Red waters of Taiji

Another family of dolphins was killed today in Taiji, Japan. The fishermen found a pod of striped dolphins and drove them into the killing cove. The terrified dolphin family was brutally killed by this group of fishermen who appear to have hearts made of stone and no compassion for the lives of these beautiful, intelligent, sentient beings. Approximately, 12 stripped dolphins lost their lives today in the cove. That brings the count to around 57 striped dolphins killed in the last 3 days.

 

Ric O'Barry

 

Ric O’Barry was still present and had live feed from the cove during the horrific event. I pray we will see the end of this senseless slaughter in his lifetime.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RIP sweet souls.

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

Taiji Police get Desperate

This week Dutch citizen Erwin Vermeulen was arrested by the police in Taiji, Japan. Erwin is in Taiji with the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society as a Cove Guardian. He traveled to Japan by his own expense to bear witness to the dolphin slaughters taking place there. An employee at the Dolphin Resort Hotel accused Erwin of shoving him, so the police arrested him without any witness to the act.

In Japan the law allows a person to be held for 23 days without being given the opportunity for visitors or speaking to a lawyer. It is usually in these 23 days that Japan gets their guilty pleas. Erwin has also not been allowed to speak to the Dutch Embassy.

If he pleads guilty the police say he will be released within two days. Clearly, the police and fishermen of Taiji, Japan are trying to convey to the world that the Cove Guardians are violent and break laws while protesting the dolphin hunts.

 

Categories: Animal Welfare, Cetaceans, Dolphins | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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