September 1 – Protests Over Taiji's Dolphin Hunt

Posted on September 1, 2013

Driving dolphins together with boats, cutting off their escape with nets, and then driving them up onto a beach—this “drive hunting” has been used against dolphins in the past, but I am surprised to learn that it is still used to hunt these intelligent mammals today!

Most of the peoples in the world have agreed to stop hunting whales, including dolphins. These creatures have huge brains, are highly intelligent, and communicate with members of their own species. Many whales and some dolphins are endangered because of human hunting and other activities, yet whales and dolphins are known to have saved humans from sharks or from drowning on many different occasions.

I read several reports of dolphins saving
the lives of dogs as well as humans.
Small populations of native groups that have always relied upon whale hunting have been allowed to continue on a subsistence level—that is, killing whales only for their own use, not to sell for money—in Alaska, Canada, Indonesia, Russia, and a few other places in the world. Three modern nations still allow some commercial whaling (selling whale meat for profit): Norway, Iceland, and Japan.

People all over the world are complaining to the governments of those three countries. It seems to me that people are especially upset at the dolphin slaughter happening in the waters of Taiji, Japan, probably because the brute-force drive-hunting methods were captured in a controversial film called Cove. Apparently, whalers in Taiji wanted to increase their hunting of dolphins for meat, but they met with multiple set-backs as the international community protested such a move, and (even more important) a lot of the dolphin meat turned out to be contaminated and not fit for human consumption.

Today, September 1, the dolphin hunting season begins in Taiji. Peaceful protests against all dolphin hunting (and particularly drive hunting) are planned to occur today.

To be fair to the other side, the Japanese government has stated that most of the dolphins herded onto their beaches in recent years have been released unharmed, and others have been taken into captivity for entertainment purposes and for aquariums. Officials state that the pilot whales captured in these hunts were killed for meat, but not the dolphins. Dolphin advocacy groups dispute these statements—and I'm not sure what to believe!

How smart are dolphins?

Check out this short video...

Also on this date:

Plan Ahead!

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