September signals the beginning of the dolphin drive hunting season in Taiji-Japan. The hunts begin on September 1st and run through April or beyond. They kill the dolphins with permits from their government. However, most of the people in the town of Taiji have nothing to do with the hunts and the majority of people in Japan are totally unaware of this annual government-sanctioned dolphin blood bath because of the media blackout on this issue in Japan. Unfortunately, the Japanese people only hear the propaganda of the Japan Fisheries Agency, and not about the real impact of this activity.
How do they capture the dolphins?
The fishermen of Taiji have developed a highly effective method of locating, capturing and eradicating dolphins, sometimes as many as one hundred or more in a single day. Before sunrise, about 24 fishermen board their 12 motorized vessels and head out to deep water where the dolphins migrate. The dolphins have been using these migratory paths for thousands, perhaps millions, of years, and the hunters know exactly where to find them.
When a school of dolphins swims by, the fishermen position their boats one behind the other, perfectly evenly spaced. Then they lower several stainless steel poles into the water, one on each side of each boat. The poles are flared out at the bottom much like a bell, which amplifies the sound produced when the hunters repeatedly hit the poles with hammers. The noise creates a wall of sound underwater, and the dolphins suddenly find themselves trapped between this wall of sound and the shoreline. Trying to get away from the sound, the dolphins swim in the opposite direction, toward the shore. The dolphins’ panic and loss of navigational sense enable the dolphin hunters to drive them into a small, hidden Cove near Taiji harbor. The fishermen seal the mouth of the Cove with several nets, and the dolphins are trapped.
What can we do to help dolphins?
One way to take actions against this horrible activity, it is becoming a volunteer to help: Form a “Cove Club” in your community to raise issue awareness and to raise funds for the Save Japan Dolphins Campaign. You can contact SaveJapanDolphins.org, which will provide you with the information that you need to spread the word.
You could also share this information and video to get the word out. People concern and actions can change the World. Thank you!