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Established in 1977, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) is an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization. Our mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.
Sea Shepherd uses innovative direct-action tactics to investigate, document, and take action when necessary to expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas. By safeguarding the biodiversity of our delicately-balanced ocean ecosystems, Sea Shepherd works to ensure their survival for future generations.
The Campaign to Oppose the Cruel and Illegal Slaughter of Pilot Whales and Dolphins is Over for 2015
Commentary by Sea Shepherd Founder, Captain Paul Watson
Sea Shepherd will return to the Faroe Islands in 2016
Sea Shepherd will never back down in the defense of the innocent victims of Faroese bloodlust. This slaughter known as the grindadráp has no justification. The Faroese killers slaughter pilot whales and dolphins simply because they like killing these wonderful sentient beings.
This summer Sea Shepherd gathered evidence of bodies being dumped into the sea, and evidence of cruelty showing the Faroese claim that the whales die in two seconds is a lie. This summer Sea Shepherd documented the reality that these horrific massacres occur by the grace of the Danish government and military.
Sea Shepherd will continue to challenge the legality of this slaughter with campaigns against Denmark’s involvement in the grind. This is a Danish atrocity supported by the Danish taxpayers, the Danish police, the Danish Navy and the Danish government. Sea Shepherd will continue to fight this abomination on land, at sea, in the courts, in the European Parliament and in the media.
This year four Sea Shepherd small fast boats were seized and 12 volunteers were arrested. The 12 crewmembers arrested refused to pay any fines and were deported from the Faroes.
Denmark spent a few million kroner to support a military opposition against Sea Shepherd for over three months, deploying a frigate, two patrol boats, a helicopter, numerous small fast boats, and hundreds of Danish police and Naval personnel. It was a very expensive operation financed by the Danish people and for the sole purpose of allowing a few thugs to slaughter whales contaminated with mercury. They will irresponsibly feed the toxic whale meat to their children so that they can continue to boast about how proud they are of spilling hundreds of liters of hot blood into the cold sea. They will allow their children to poke out the eyeballs and pry out the teeth of the pilot whales, jump on the carcasses and play with fetuses viciously ripped from the bodies of cetacean mothers.
Sea Shepherd thanks the hundreds of volunteers who served on the land crew and on the crews of the Sam Simon, Bob Barker and Brigitte Bardot. You all did a wonderful job, risked your lives and your freedoms and worked terrifically long hours – and you did it out of compassion, without material gain, because you cared.
And Sea Shepherd thanks everyone who supported this campaign with your donations and your time.
Sea Shepherd Holds Specialized Course on Environmental Law for Ecuadorian Judiciary
After extensive preparation and in cooperation with the National Judicial Authority of Ecuador and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Sea Shepherd Galapagos organized its first-ever capacity-building course on the landmark World Heritage Convention and its application in the Galapagos Islands.
The Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (the World Heritage Convention) is a successful global instrument for the protection of cultural and natural heritage.
Our initial intention was to simply offer a symposium in Galapagos on the matter. Thanks to the support of the Ecuadorian Judicial School (Escuela de la Función Judicial del Consejo de la Judicatura del Ecuador), we were able to accomplish a lot more:
- We provided an online course that is part of the official capacity-building program in Ecuador. This mandatory course was attended by judges, prosecutors and lawyers with jurisdiction on Galapagos matters. More than 400 people completed this course, an unprecedented number in the region when it comes to enrollment in environmental training courses.
- The training course was complemented by a legal symposium in Guayaquil, Continental Ecuador and in Santa Cruz, the Galapagos Islands.
The essence of both the course and the symposium was to analyze the importance of the World Heritage Convention in the protection of Galapagos as a World Heritage Site. The Convention remains a strong tool for judges and prosecutors to enforce environmental law in protected areas like Galapagos.
The symposium featured presentations from the following legal experts:
- Alcira Sandoval and Indira Salazar, representing UNESCO
- Remigio Sacoto, representing the Ecuadorian Judicial School
- Mario Peña, Professor of Environmental Law from the University of Costa Rica
- Hugo Echeverria, representing Sea Shepherd
We were able to demonstrate to the attendees that the Ecuadorian Constitution as well as the UNESCO Convention clearly provide a solid basis for the protection, conservation and rehabilitation of the highly unique Galapagos eco-system.
Galapagos was the first site to be included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The conference was held to commemorate 37 years since the site was dedicated as a sacred region of rare and unmatched natural beauty.
The Galapagos Legal Project is now in its fifth year and continues to focus on Galapagos as a place of outstanding universal value and appeal, which is in line with UNESCO’s mission.
For Sea Shepherd, Galapagos has always been humanity’s line in the sand. The protection of the islands and their extraordinary marine reserve is extremely important. As Sea Shepherd’s Founder Captain Watson has said, “ [Galapagos] is a very sacred place. It’s very hard for [humanity] to have respect for any other ecosystem if we can’t respect the one ecosystem which is most renowned on this planet for being so unique.”
Sea Shepherd Concludes Grueling Faroe Islands Pilot Whale Defense Campaign
Vows To Continue Pressure To End The Slaughter
The Dutch-registered Sea Shepherd ships Sam Simon and Bob Barker have arrived in the port of Bremen, Germany, marking the official conclusion of Sea Shepherd’s sixth Faroe Islands Pilot Whale Defense Campaign, Operation Sleppid Grindini. The returning crews received a hero’s welcome as supporters gathered to greet them following the grueling three-and-a-half-month campaign.
The ships join Sea Shepherd’s Australian-registered fast trimaran, Brigitte Bardot, which returned to Bremen from the Faroe Islands in late September.
Sea Shepherd’s land crew of international volunteers, who have been on the ground in the Faroe Islands since June 16 this year, also departed from the archipelago last week.
While 490 pilot whales have been slaughtered in the Faroe Islands since June this year alone, the lives of hundreds more have been saved over the course of Operation Sleppid Grindini thanks to Sea Shepherd’s direct actions. Pods of pilot whales, white-sided dolphins, white-beaked dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, and Risso’s dolphins are among those that have been led away from the killing beaches of the archipelago and safely back out to sea by the Sea Shepherd ships.
The triumphs of Operation Sleppid Grindini have been achieved in the face of great adversity. A total of 14 Sea Shepherd volunteers representing 11 countries were arrested throughout the campaign. Ten of those volunteers were subsequently deported for the “crime” of defending pilot whales.
On August 24, the international crew of the Bob Barker was denied entry into the Faroe Islands by Danish authorities in an action that Sea Shepherd’s legal council has described as unlawful.
Faroese and Danish authorities have confiscated a total of four Sea Shepherd small boats, three of those during the course of Operation Sleppid Grindini.
The Farley small boat, which was detained on July 20, remains in police custody over one month after charges relating to the boat’s confiscation were dropped. The Echo small boat was confiscated in the Shetland Islands, Scotland on September 1, and later extradited to the Faroe Islands by the Danish Navy ship, HDMS Knud Rasmussen, despite the fact that a warrant to block the extradition had been issued by the High Court of Judiciary in Scotland.
However, Sea Shepherd has risen above these challenges, and in doing so has garnered unprecedented levels of international attention for the plight of the pilot whales and other dolphins in the Faroe Islands. As well, Sea Shepherd has ensured that the government of Denmark is held to account for its continued complicity in the atrocities of the grindadráp.
On July 23, over 250 pilot whales were slaughtered in the archipelago with the assistance of the Danish navy and police, and the backing of the Danish government. International outcry followed as media outlets around the world relayed graphic video and photographic evidence of the horrors, captured by Sea Shepherd crews on the ground. Demonstrations were held in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Italy, Luxembourg, Germany, France, Spain, and in the United States, as people took to the streets to stand-up against the grindadráp.
In early August, two major German cruise-liner companies, AIDA and Hapag-Lloyd, announced that they had cancelled tours to the Faroe Islands in response to the ongoing slaughters.
On August 19, the Scottish town of Wick severed its 20-year twin-town relationship with the Faroese city of Klaksvík, and said that it would not look to reinstate official relationships until the "disgusting" slaughter of whales in the archipelago is banned.
Political representatives from the United Kingdom, Italy and Luxembourg have all publicly announced their disdain for the ongoing practice of the grindadráp, which the Danish government actively supports in defiance of the sentiments of its European Union obligations and international legal responsibilities.
Sea Shepherd Land Team Leader, Rosie Kunneke, stated, “We mourn for all of those pilot whales and other dolphins who have lost their lives to the brutality of the grindadráp. However, thanks to the efforts of Sea Shepherd, these beautiful creatures have not died in vain. What’s more, hundreds of other pilot whales and dolphins are still alive today because of the Sea Shepherd crews, and this is something that Sea Shepherd is immensely proud of.”
Even though Operation Sleppid Grindini has officially concluded for 2015, Sea Shepherd has vowed to continue its fight against the grindadráp from afar.
Sea Shepherd has been leading opposition to the mass slaughter of pilot whales and other dolphins in the Faroe Islands since the 1980's. Operation Sleppid Grindini has been one of the organization’s most successful campaigns in the archipelago, led by its strongest at-sea presence in the region to date.
Operation Henkaku: September 2015 Update
As September draws to a close, the Cove Guardians are reflecting upon the first month of Sea Shepherd’s Operation Henkaku as they prepare for the next five months of this emotionally grueling campaign to expose the capture and slaughter of cetaceans in Taiji’s infamous cove. In the sixth consecutive season of its Taiji Dolphin Defense Campaign, Sea Shepherd will once again be present throughout the entire six-month drive hunt season to bring the atrocities in Taiji to a worldwide audience via real-time reports, video and photographic documentation, and livestreaming.
Japan Tries to Hide the Bloodshed
Again this season, returning Cove Guardians have been denied entry into Japan by Immigration and deported from the country, without any official reason. Veteran Sea Shepherd crewmember Karen Hagen of Norway and two-time Cove Guardian volunteer Linda Trapp of the USA were both detained, interrogated and held for hours and ultimately deported from Japan.
Sea Shepherd believes that these denials are attempts by an increasingly desperate Japanese government to hide the massacre of wild dolphins and small whales in Taiji from the eyes of the world. Despite all obstacles, Sea Shepherd has had a team of Cove Guardians on the ground since the launch of the hunt season on Sept. 1 and continues to monitor and document the shameful actions of the Taiji Fishermen’s Union.
First Slaughter of the Season – Risso’s Dolphins
The 2015-2016 season began with a peaceful streak of ten consecutive Blue Cove Days, during which no pods were captured or killed. Day after day, the hunters were forced to keep their boats in port due to the weather conditions or they returned to Taiji Harbor empty-handed, after their greedy search for wild dolphins or small whales did not turn up any victims to harass and murder.
Sadly, on the 11th of Sept. the blue streak was broken, as the first slaughter of the hunt season claimed the lives of 10 beautiful Risso’s dolphins. The panicked members of the pod fought for their lives, and following a stressful drive into the shallow waters, they threw themselves onto the rocks along the cove in desperation.
One Risso’s dolphin managed to jump over the inner nets and ended up stranded. The heartless killers paid no mind to the plea for compassion, dragging the distressed Risso’s dolphin back into the water and toward an inescapable fate. No member of the pod was spared.
From the Cove to Captivity: Bottlenose Dolphins Captured
On Sept. 19, a pod of approximately 80 bottlenose dolphins fell victim to the true economic force behind the drive hunt – the captive industry. When the Taiji killers spot a bottlenose pod, they know it is to be a lucrative day, as this species is the most profitable and therefore the most sought-after in the international captive trade. Once this pod was netted within the cove, a brutal captive selection process ensued and 18 wild dolphins were taken prisoner.
The remaining pod members were held overnight in the cove without food or shelter – a regular occurrence in Taiji’s cruel hunt – and faced hours of captive selection the following day on Sept. 20. In total, 50 bottlenose dolphins were kidnapped from this decimated family and from the sea, transferred to the Taiji Harbor pens where they await a lifetime of imprisonment in captive facilities in Japan or overseas.
Those dolphins who were not chosen for captivity were driven back out to sea, likely traumatized, stressed and possibly injured from their two days of hell in the cove, after having lost most of their family. These 28-30 dolphins were mostly juveniles who stand little chance of surviving without the protection of their mothers and pod. Sea Shepherd has previously documented the bodies of dolphins who have washed ashore shortly following these exhausting drives back out to sea.
Will the Killers Exceed their Risso’s Quota Again this Year?
In the second slaughter of the season, another Risso’s pod was callously wiped out by the hunters on Sept. 23. One dolphin, paralyzed with fear and exhaustion, drowned before the killers were able to claim his or her life by slaughter, though they are still responsible for the dolphin’s death. The remaining 10 members of the pod were quickly driven deeper into the cove and mercilessly killed.
The number of Risso’s dolphins allowed in the hunters’ self-allocated quota this season is 256. Last year, the Risso’s quota of 265 was exceeded, with no regard for the effects on Risso’s populations. It remains to be seen whether the killers will once again exceed their quota, for which they have faced no penalty from Japan in the past. Not only is Taiji’s drive hunt unthinkably cruel, but it is quite possibly driving numerous dolphin species from existence in these waters.
Another Blue Streak in the Cove
In the wake of the slaughter on the 23rd, the waters of the cove have remained blue for seven consecutive days, with torrential rain keeping the boats in port on Sept. 24 and the hunters returning empty-handed the remainder of the days closing out this month.
Even on Blue Cove days, Sea Shepherd volunteers are still on duty, keeping a watchful eye on the captive dolphins in the Taiji Harbor pens. Their presence is a constant reminder that though there were no slaughters or captures on a given day, this hunt will end only when the global demand for captive dolphins and whales is ended. Sea Shepherd believes that the drive hunt could not be sustained solely by the sale of dolphin meat for human consumption – as demand for dolphin and whale meat continues to sink to an all-time low. That is why this season, along with continuing to document and live stream each capture and slaughter to apply continuous pressure upon Japan, Sea Shepherd has strengthened our focus on raising vital awareness of the inextricable link between the slaughter in Taiji and cetacean captivity around the globe. Please stand with us and our Cove Guardians as we break the vicious cycle that flows “From Taiji to Tanks.”
If the Ocean Dies, We All Die!
Commentary by Sea Shepherd Founder, Captain Paul Watson
If the ocean dies, we all die. Why?
A few people have asked me to explain just why it is that humanity will die if the ocean dies.
Billions of people depend upon the ocean for food, and I’m not talking about restaurants, sushi bars and fish markets in New York, Paris, London, Tokyo or Sydney. I’m talking about extremely poor people whose lives actually depend upon catching fish.
But food being taken from the ocean is the least of the factors that will kill us.
The ocean is the life support system for the planet, providing 50% of the oxygen we breathe and regulating climate. The ocean is also the pump that allows us to have fresh water. It is the driving force, along with the sun, of the global circulation system that transports water from the land to the sea to the atmosphere and back to the land again.
Plankton – the most important group of plants and animal species on the planet (excluding bacteria). Plankton populations have been diminished by 40% since 1950, yet there is now commercial exploitation by Norwegian and Japanese fishing corporations to extract millions of tons of plankton for conversion to a protein-rich animal feed.
Every year 65 billion animals are slaughtered to feed humans and some 40% of all the fish caught are converted to fishmeal to feed pigs, chickens, domestic salmon, fur-bearing animals and cat food. With fish populations diminishing, the corporations are looking to replace fishmeal with a plankton paste.
Is cheap fishmeal for domestic animals worth robbing the planet of our oxygen supplies?
Where does oxygen come from? Some 50% comes from the forest that we are rapidly cutting down. The rest comes from the sea.
Some of this oxygen is produced by seaweeds and sea grasses, but the vast majority of the oxygen is produced by phytoplankton, microscopic single-celled organisms that have the ability to photosynthesize. These tiny creatures live at the surface layer of the ocean (and in lakes and rivers) and form the very base of the aquatic food chain.
During photosynthesis, phytoplankton remove carbon dioxide from sea water and release oxygen. The carbon becomes part of their bodies.
Providing oxygen and sequestering carbon dioxide is the major contribution of plankton, along with forming the foundation for the entire oceanic food chain.
The fish- and animal-killing industries are robbing the seas of oxygen production for short-term profits.
This is one of the things that most likely WILL NOT be discussed at the Climate Change Conference in Paris in two months.
Other factors diminishing plankton are acidification from excessive carbon dioxide, pollution, habitat destruction and the radical diminishment of whale populations.
The whales are the primary species that fertilize the phytoplankton. For example, one blue whale defecates three tons of nitrogen and iron-rich feces a day, providing nutrients to the phytoplankton. In return the phytoplankton feed the zooplankton, the fishes and ultimately everything that lives in the sea.
In order to restore phytoplankton populations we need to restore whale populations and we need to abolish the industrialized exploitation of bio-diversity in the ocean. We also need to have governments end all subsidization of commercial fishing operations.
The reality is that there are simply not enough fish in the sea to continue to feed an ever-expanding human population. It is a simple concept to understand – more humans eating fish, directly or indirectly (i.e. fishmeal), contributes to further diminishment of fish.
This diminishment means diminished supplies, resulting in increased subsidization to provide more efficient technology to extract even more of the diminishing supplies. Unless the subsidies are cut, this diminishment will result in collapse. I call this the “economics of extinction.”
There must be a global moratorium on all industrialized fishing. And there must be a global cessation on the killing of whales. We need to return whale and fish populations to pre-exploitation levels. The focus must be on revitalizing bio-diversity in the sea in order to address climate change and diminishment of phytoplankton oxygen production.
Will it cost profits? Absolutely. Will it costs jobs? Absolutely. But are jobs and profits really worth destroying the planet’s life support system?
Strangely, to many of the world’s politicians, the answer to that question is yes.
The solutions to climate change are simple but, unfortunately, the solutions are not what anyone will be discussing in Paris in two months, at least not at the gathering of world leaders.
The solutions are:
- An end to the ecologically destructive greenhouse-gas-producing animal slaughter industry that emits more greenhouse gases annually than the entire transportation industry.
- A global moratorium on all industrialized fishing operations.
- An end to the killing of whales by anyone, anywhere for any reason.
The collapse of ocean bio-diversity and the catastrophic collapse of phytoplankton and zooplankton populations in the sea will cause the collapse of civilization, and most likely the extinction of the human species.
And that is why when the ocean dies, we all die!
Sea Shepherd Exposes Cover-Up Behind Gruesome Death Of A Pilot Whale
Last week, while patrolling the waters of the Faroe Islands, the crew of the Sea Shepherd ship, Sam Simon, discovered the carcass of a pilot whale floating in the waters just outside Klaksvík in the Kalsoyar fjord in the northeast of the archipelago.
On closer inspection, the Sea Shepherd crew made a number of gruesome and disturbing observations:
- The pilot whale carcass had the number “30” carved into the side of its head, just above the jawline, between the cheek and the ear. Dolphins and pilot whales that have been slaughtered in a grindadráp are marked in this way as a part of the meat distribution. As such, it was clear that the pilot whale had been slaughtered at a grindadráp.
- Except for some parts of the whale’s belly that appeared to have been cut open (presumably to remove the intestines), the carcass, which measured approximately 5.6 meters (approximately 18 feet) in length, was relatively intact. This is contradictory to “standard” practice reportedly adhered to during a grindadráp, where pilot whales are carved up, and the meat distributed.
- The carcass had rope tied around its head and its tail, indicating the animal may have been intentionally weighted so it would sink.
The July 23 Tórshavn grindadráp was the only slaughter at which Sea Shepherd crews were not present for the entire time during the meat distribution process, and therefore the only slaughter this year that Sea Shepherd crews are unable to confirm that all of the meat was distributed. As such, Sea Shepherd suspects that pilot whale number 30 was slaughtered at the Tórshavn grind.
However, three questions still remain unanswered: Why was the pilot whale carcass so intact? Why wasn’t all of the meat from the pilot whale distributed, as standard grindadráp practice would dictate? And why does it appear as though the pilot whale was weighted in order to make it sink?
Sea Shepherd Land Team leader, Rosie Kunneke, suspects that many of the pilot whales that were killed at the Tórshavn slaughter were simply discarded, as there were too many animals for local authorities to process before the meat fouled.
Speaking from South Africa, Kunneke stated, “The Tórshavn slaughter took place late at night on July 23, which means the meat was not distributed until the next day. Given this, as well as the sheer number of pilot whales that were killed, it’s highly likely that the meat perished before it could be distributed. These beautiful creatures were then probably just dumped out to sea and weighted down in an attempt to cover-up this disgusting waste of life.”
Such wastage is not unheard of. In 2010 following the slaughter of 62 pilot whales at the killing beach of Viðvík, reports indicate that the bodies of most of the pilot whales were thrown away. Like the July 23 Tórshavn slaughter, the whales had been killed late at night, so the meat distribution was left until the next day. As a result, the majority of the meat had gone bad and, therefore, was discarded.
On Tuesday, Sea Shepherd crewmembers visited Tórshavn police station to demand further information about what happened to the bodies of the 142 pilot whales slaughtered at Tórshavn on July 23. However the sysselmann, who is a police officer and also the administrator of the local grindadráp, stated, “I do not talk with people from Sea Shepherd.”
Sea Shepherd Offers $10,000 Reward for Walrus Poachers
Commentary by Sea Shepherd Founder, Captain Paul Watson
WANTED: WALRUS IVORY POACHERS
Sea Shepherd offers $10,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for illegally slaughtering 25 walruses for ivory in the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge.
Any relevant information can be sent to:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Alaska Regional Office
1011 East Tudor Road
Anchorage, AK 99503
Phone: (907) 786-3309
Fax: (907) 786-3495
Or send an e-mail to Fish and Wildlife Law Enforcement at: email@example.com
Read about the walrus slaughter on Alaska Dispatch News
Federal Court Upholds Denial of Georgia Aquarium Beluga Whale Import
In a long-awaited decision, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia has today upheld a denial by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), rejecting Georgia Aquarium’s application to import 18 wild-caught beluga whales from Russia.
In 2012, Georgia Aquarium applied for a permit to import into the U.S., 18 beluga whales captured from Russia’s Sea of Okhotsk between 2006 and 2011. In August 2013, NOAA denied the hotly debated request, following an extended public comment period that saw 9,000 comments submitted. An online petition launched by a Sea Shepherd volunteer also received nearly 76,000 signatures against the proposed import.
According to NOAA, permit denial was based largely on the following reasons:
- Inability to determine whether the proposed activity, by itself or in combination with other activities, would likely have a significant adverse impact on the species or stock.
- The likelihood that the request would result in the taking of marine mammals beyond those authorized by this permit, as ongoing legal marine mammal captures are expected to continue in Russia. NOAA stated it believes issuance of this permit would therefore contribute to the demand to capture belugas from this stock in the future for the purpose of public display in the U.S. and worldwide.
- It was determined that five of the beluga whales proposed for import, estimated to be approximately 18 months old at the time of capture, were potentially still nursing and not yet independent.
Undeterred by NOAA’s denial, in September 2013, Georgia Aquarium brought its attempts to get its hands on the wild-caught whales to the courtroom, asking the U.S. District Court to overturn NOAA’s decision. Judge Amy Totenberg, in today’s ruling, stated that NOAA “properly reviewed” the permit application, despite Georgia Aquarium’s accusations – which Judge Totenberg said were “like something out of a Russian spy novel.”
If the permit had been granted, upon arrival in the U.S., the whales would have been scattered to aquarium and marine parks including Georgia Aquarium, SeaWorld locations in Orlando, San Diego, and San Antonio, Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, and Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut. This month, SeaWorld stated that it no longer had plans to accept any of the belugas, likely in an attempt to battle the ongoing public backlash against the company for its treatment of whales.
Sadly, these 18 beluga whales have already been captured and they reportedly remain in pens at Russia’s Utrish Marine Mammal Research Station. Critics of the opposition to the import have pointed out that the belugas will likely still face a life of imprisonment in captivity there or elsewhere around the world. However, Sea Shepherd believes that the decisions from the NOAA and the U.S. District Court, ultimately, are victories for the overall population of beluga whales and for whale conservation as a whole. Allowing Georgia Aquarium to import these whales would have set a dangerous precedent, opening the floodgates for further captures and exports from around the world into the U.S. The aquarium’s import permit application was the first attempt to import wild-caught whales directly for the U.S. captive industry in 20 years.
Sea Shepherd has followed this issue since the application was submitted by Georgia Aquarium and encouraged our supporters to oppose the aquarium’s plans to import these 18 whales torn from the sea. Sea Shepherd applauds today’s responsible decision from the federal court, and hopes that it will help to end the demand for wild-caught whales and dolphins that continues to fuel violent captures around the world. As we have seen time and time again, it is this same demand that sustains the drive hunt that targets entire pods of cetaceans in Taiji, Japan.