By Kirsten Massebeau
Video Provided by Save Japan Dolphins Leah Lemeux
Taiji Dolphin Action Group members on Facebook were hopeful when the dolphin hunters returned to work on January 5th 2012 that they would not find dolphins, or would simply abandon this inhumane hunt that has caused millions of dolphins a slow deaths in The Cove. The volunteers on the ground were a star studded cast of dedicated dolphin conservationists, Enson Inoue Martial Arts Champion and Ric O’Barry creator of “The Cove” were just a few who showed up, everyone playing their parts.
Apparently when the boats first went out they located a small pod that they released: Sea Shepherds “Taiji: the 2 boats have abandoned the found pod. All 12 boats back on patrol. #tweet4taiji. The small pod may have been Risso’s Dolphins a species that has been driven into the cove again and again this winter. According to Ceta-Base, 202 have been taken this so far leaving a remaining 73 Risso’s dolphins during this season http://www.ceta-base.com/drivefisheries.html.
Approximately an hour later the news dolphin activists world-wide dreaded became a reality again. Sea Shepherds: “Taiji: 5 hunting boats on the horizon in pod driving formation #tweet4taiji”. Then, Sea Shepherds, “Taiji: 9 boats driving a pod of dolphins toward the cove. 1 boat returned to harbor to prepare skiffs and nets.”
The horror began as the Sea Shepherds reported Taiji: the dolphin killers say they have a pod of 200 Striped dolphins.
#Tweet4Taiji. The beautiful and powerful striped dolphins known to panic in the cove were being pushed into Taiji’s cove of death and suffering. Mothers, Fathers, and their children ran for their lives as the killers pushed on, Sea Shepherds, “Taiji: the pod originally stretched out over a mile. Some have escaped. The unlucky ones are being driven closer to the cove. #Tweet4Taiji“.
40-45 dolphins were driven into the cove and under the blue tarps of death where the killers hide their shameful acts of violence slaughtering dolphins slowly as seen in the Dieter Hagmann video secretly obtained from under the blue tarps during 2010-2011 hunting season.
Although strong the striped dolphins would be no match for the killers. One lone dolphin escaped but his efforts were of no avail as a dolphin killer shoved his blow hole under the water out of the view of watchful eyes as pointed out by Save Japan Dolphins volunteer Heather Hill, ” The final lone dolphin was not cooperating with the skiffs and resisted swimming towards the now bloody beach. A diver approached the dolphin and when it tried to flee, he grabbed hold of it. The dolphin was clearly extremely stressed by this contact and made a mad dash towards its family, under the tarps and out of our sight, towing the diver the entire way. His hand was placed over the dolphin’s blowhole, and I wondered if he was trying to keep it submerged and out of our sight.”http://savejapandolphins.org/blog/post/two-views-of-todays-dolphin-slaughter
Sounds of Thrashing and high whistles could be heard by volunteers and then silence and the sound of bodies being thrown into the skiffs to be transported to their bloody butcher house of shame, “The loud ‘thud’ of dolphin bodies being tossed into the skiffs filled the air”. http://savejapandolphins.org/blog/post/two-views-of-todays-dolphin-slaughter
Another tragic ending for the people of the sea in the bloody cove of Taiji. The people of the sea, their lives wasted so their toxic flesh can be sold to unsuspecting customers. Hardy Jones director of Blue Voice. org continues to bring the focus back to the toxicity of the dolphin meat due to Mercury, PCB’s and other toxins http://bluevoice.org/news_dolphinmeat.php.
Picture provided by Graham Ekins
When will this senseless killing of the monarchsof the sea end in Taiji? Every day awareness grows worldwide as more people join to end this senseless slaughter. Please join us as we continue to fight for our oceans and her people, cetaceans. Your voice is needed. Together we can make a difference.