Taiji dolphin fishermen vow to continue slaughter


Fishermen in Taiji, Wakayama Prefecture, vowed Wednesday to continue their dolphin hunt, despite a pledge by zoos and aquariums not to buy animals caught with the controversial method.

“We will never stop it,” Yoshifumi Kai of the local fisheries cooperative told reporters.

The news conference came a week after Japan’s zoos and aquariums voted to stop using dolphins caught by the so-called “drive hunt” method, as demanded by the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).

Some dolphins are captured alive and sold to aquariums, fetching about ¥1 million ($8,300) each.

The vote was prompted by WAZA’s move to suspend the Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquariums (JAZA) last month over the issue.

WAZA regards drive hunt fishing — where pods of cetaceans are herded into a bay by a wall of sound before being butchered — as “cruel”, a charge local fishermen reject.

“It’s unclear which part of the drive hunt WAZA considers cruel,” Kai said.

“We used to harpoon dolphins but that’s several decades ago. Now we sever the spinal cord in a moment and there is not much blood.”

Shuichi Matsumoto, head of another local fisherman’s group, said they “have not broken any rules,” adding the group wants to continue the tradition and pass it on to future generations.

Taiji came to worldwide attention after the Oscar-winning 2009 documentary “The Cove” showed pods of the animals forced into a bay and slaughtered with knives, in a mass killing that turned the water red with blood.

Animal rights activists continue to protest in the town, despite hostility from locals who say they are victims of anti-Japanese bias.

Many of the dolphins are butchered for food, but campaigners claim there is insufficient demand for their relatively unpopular meat to make the hunt economically worthwhile.

They charge that the high prices live animals fetch when sold to aquariums and dolphin shows is the only thing that sustains the hunt.

Despite the overwhelming vote last week by JAZA to abandon the Taiji hunt, five aquariums are reportedly considering leaving the organization so they can continue to source dolphins from the town.

However, the vote has left aquariums with the problem of how to continue to stock their facilities — only 12 to 13 percent of dolphins at Japanese aquariums are captive-bred, compared with 70 percent in the United States, according to JAZA.

  • http://shurikenn.blogspot.jp/ ЯØکŶ کhuriken 日本

    Malditos, gananciosos covardes!!!

  • Yasmina

    Perhaps someone should sever Kai’s spina cord. That would a reason to celebrate. In fact, all of Taiji’s citizens should have the similar fate since they say it’s so humane. Sever all of the spinal cords of all of the fishermen and their families. That’s what they deserve. Lowly scum. Sub-human. Inbred for sure.

  • Hendrix

    Absolutely Disgusting… nothing more to say

  • Kiuri

    What disgusts me about those who oppose dolphin hunting is that they put dolphins above people and see nothing wrong with it. Their opposition is based on nothing but intolerance, intolerance against anything different from their own value system: “We don’t hunt dolphin, therefore nobody else should.” Other than that, there is no rational argument.

    • Franki Webb

      You are joking right? This isn’t a matter of picking humanity over nature. This is purely and simply a cruel practice that threatens the very fabric of the ocean’s ecosystem, as well as causing unnecessary pain to creatures we deem below us. This isn’t about making dolphin lives more valuable than humans. It’s a about equality of every creature on this planet! It’s not simply about being self righteous, its about showing empathy and compassion towards animals helpless against human barbarity. Culture and religion is no excuse for cruelty, barbarity and ignorance.

    • tisho

      The rational argument is that Japan is violating international law and UN order on several accords. 1 – Exceeding the allowed by UN annual quota and then lying that the hunting is for scientific purposes in order to bypass the quota. Here you have two violations. 2 – Entering other countries territorial waters in order to hunt in their waters. Again, illegal. 3 – Some of the dolphins the Japanese are killing are protected under international law and animal protecting organizations due to the reason that they are listed in the animal extinction book. Those are the main 3 accords under international law which Japan violates. If you follow international law there should be no problem, at least not that big. The inhumane slaughter of the dolphins is in fact disturbing to say the least, but it is not illegal unfortunately.

    • Dana Penaherrera

      no you are wrong- dolphins are intelligent equal to humans they are also wild that is a big difference

    • Dana Penaherrera

      people have voices dolphins do not- it is time someone put nature in front of the selfish dirty polluting human

    • Dana Penaherrera

      well I am against kidnapping schoolgirls and forcing them into marriages- this does not mean I am against african cultures- It means I can differentiate between right and wrong

  • Helena Frangogiannis

    I wonder why we expect serial killers to change… These guys are so sick they think “Pithing” is humane murder… Maybe they should try it on themselves and tell us their impressions if they survive the severing of their spinal chord and their drowning slowly…. A truly revolting lot!

  • Mark M

    scum of the earth

  • ziggypop

    Two faces of the morally bankrupt and soulless sub human species. They bring great shame to the people of Japan. Cowards.

  • June Killington

    The world desperately wants these hideous disgusting evil Japanese peasants to stop their slaughter. They need psychiatric help, medication and a good kicking.

  • Corinne Nyman

    We need to continue to raise awareness among Japanese people number one . This needs to be made ILLEGAL number two. Then These guys need to be fired, have boat destroyed.. End of story!!

  • az

    Dolphins and whales are far more important then just being a higly inteligent mammal spicies. Cataceans are not the only higly intelligent animal species on the planet, there are many others, so in a sense of intelligence this is not a really important fact, bit catacean language is acctually more advanced and complicated then ours. But they are killing them because of a different reason, they are mass killing all animals because off a different reasons. Reason being that every single species through their lives balance the energies on the Earth in on big flow of life. Us humans being so advanced and intelligent in a material way have developed certain creteria of inteligence which is totaly amiss in a grand universal scale. What is acctually happening is we know nothing about animals becasue we compare their meaning existence to ours which is ridiculous since animals are still much more just a manifestation of nature itself like we humans also but have forcefully devided ourself from it. So animals are really just an intelligent energy balance creation system as we humans should should be so too on a conscious level. We know nothing about bird singing other than we thing is for calling out danger and mating which is only 10% Birds sing. They sing and with every note they sing the song of life which sustains us all. The winds sings too when it blows through the tree tops and it whispers the lost knowladge of the primal Earth. The whales and dolphines… they do not sing songs of mating. They sing about who they are, where they came from and what are they doing here. Their erie songs ecco through the depths of oceans and give the Earth solace in a lonely cry for help. Whales are the last consious guardians of the Earth since we humans threw this right and privilige away. Whales and dolphins like sing the catacean history which they teach to the young and the young teach it to new generations and so has been done from the time they arriwed here. They are killing them because whales know the truth abaut us humans about us animals about us the Earth and about us the universe. Whales came to Earth long ago from distant part of the universe and ever since they sing about their journey. We know nothing in our blindness off self importance.

  • Kork

    I hope another Tsunami wipes them out once and for all!!

  • Kiuri

    If people here feel so passionately about stopping the dolphin hunt, as you seem to be, you should try to persuade these fishermen, or any responsible officials, by arguing in civil and rational manner. Resorting to criminal tactics like intimidation or violence, or even throwing death threats around like some in this comment section or many activists in Taiji, won’t help at all.

  • Melissa

    The Japanese feel that they are an honorable people but there is no honor in the slaughter!!!

  • 151E

    I respect your moral consistency; however, I also acknowledge that Homo sapiens are omnivores and most people continue to eat meat. That’s why I can’t bring myself to condemn those who do the dirty work that most of the rest of us so conveniently ignore. My compromise then is to insist that food animals are afforded as much opportunity to engage in natural behaviours before they are slaughtered, in a manner as humanely as possible, and wind-up on our dinner plates.

    That said, at the rate that biotechnology is advancing, I suspect we’ll largely transition to factory grown meats within the next 150 years. And while that will end the suffering of factory farmed animals, it may well also bring them to the edge of extinction; after all, look at how well non-food animals fare.

  • Bonnie Spielman

    I want to know who these Japanese people think they are that they can even think that these animals are theirs to capture or eat. I know they are very arrogant in their belief that they are doing no harm. Hiroshima and Nagasaki will forever live in their minds. And this is one way to get back at us. Also the radiation from those bombs will forever live in their air and waters and has probably effected their brains

    “If we go on the way we
    have, the fault is our greed and if we are not willing to change, we will
    disappear from the face of the globe, to be replaced by the insect. Jacques
    Yves Cousteau.