Dolphin Transfer…

Although the fishermen did not jump in their big dirty white boats this morning, they did hang around Taiji Harbour for quite some time…

This morning, yet again, the Harbour was full. However today was a little different to most days in the past two weeks… Not only was the Harbour full of boats, but for the first time in a while- it was full of dolphin hunters and their cars also. It was obvious that they were back at work. The wind was quite strong this morning- a good indication that they may have waited a day due to the weather before returning to the oceans to strip them bare of marine mammals… or perhaps there was something else they needed to attend to first.

We saw them at work on large green tarpaulins that were strewn along the ground at the Fisheries Union… through a pair of binoculars; it was easy to recognise the tarps instantaneously. They were tarps that we had seen many, many times. Tarps which frustrated us, irritated us, angered us, and most of all- reminded us of something so horrible and unthinkable, that it is almost sickening to look at them. They were working on the tarps from the killing cove.

At first we thought that they might be adding extra tarps to the three large ones already situated at the killing cove’s beach… We wanted to find out for sure, so we followed them by car as they hopped into a loaded skiff, and greeted them from a headland nearby- a hill nicknamed Glenda’s Hill… which gives a direct line of sight into the little cove. We were pleased to see that they had only repaired pre-existing tarpaulins, and that no additional ones would be there. It will be interesting to see, however, whether the small gaps which we usually get a lucky shot through will now be covered up completely… time will tell.

As it was still relatively early on in the morning, we decided to quickly drive by the harbour one last time after watching the hunters fix up their newly repaired tarp- just to make certain that no activity was happening there. We counted ourselves very lucky that we chose to do this, as we ended up spending the next few hours documenting and following the dolphin hunters and trainers’ every moves!

We discovered that they were transporting six bottlenose dolphins from the holding pens in the Taiji Harbour (the untrained dolphins, which reach $150,000 apiece) to the nearby ocean pens by the Dolphin Base. These dolphins will now be subjected to obeying orders from humans for food… for the next few months; after which they will fetch close to $300,000 on the captive trade market…

The dolphins were taken forcefully by trainers who jumped in their pens with snorkelling gear on- gripping and holding the dolphins against their will, fighting with their strong movements until the dolphin gives up their fight… The fishermen all surrounded the pens and dragged a huge net up from underneath the dolphins and trainers, forcing them into shallow water, where it would be easier to capture. The dolphins were then put into slings, and carted off alongside a skiff toward the Dolphin Base…

In order to get the footage that we managed to this morning- it really paid off to have a larger group with us. Myself, Libby and William stationed ourselves up on the Mountain Pass to get a clear shot of the whole Harbour, and Tim, Andy and Simon made their way around the Harbour on foot below. We were capturing footage from every angle- nothing that they did went unseen.

As they began to drive the skiffs out of the Harbour, Libby, William, Simon and myself went straight to Dolphin Base to capture the dolphins’ last few minutes of being completely wild- before their minds were forced into the language of human hand signals, targets and toys… A few of the dolphins put up a bit of a fight as they were carted into their new holding pens, but were no match for the half dozen or so humans that obviously view these dolphins as nothing more than a sizeable paycheck… The whole morning was sickening.

As I mentioned, we did capture it all on footage- so to have a look for yourself, please have a look at this video of my footage below.

On a lighter note, yesterday I contacted a lady called Dee Reid, who works at a Centre for individuals suffering sustained brain injuries as a carer. She voiced her story of how the story of ‘Misty the Dolphin’ had inspired many disabled individuals at the Centre into a world of wonder and passion… They are learning about dolphins, Japan and Misty, and Dee expressed such a positive change in their mindsets as they begin to develop their knowledge on this wondrous species… I have always personally believed in the power and image of beauty, freedom and grace that dolphins possess, and have seen countless stories throughout my life whereby people are inspired by these amazing creatures. They truly do represent everything that humans long to be…

So a big shout out to ‘NOWCAP’, Northwest Community Action Programs from Wyoming, USA. Us Cove Guardians here in Taiji were so touched and moved by your story that we wanted to make a special video blog just for you guys! You can watch it below.

Don’t forget to keep sending in your questions to pathtoprotect@hotmail.com for me to answer in my video blogs! Please also send your videos to get involved with my new Youth Project- you can find out more in my previous blog, or on my Facebook Page…

You can follow my videos here on this blogpage (which I will continue to update every day) as well as my Youtube Channel
Also, don’t forget to add me as a friend on Facebook if you haven’t yet- for regular updates, photos, information and videos from the Cove.

Thankyou everyone for your continued support, and positive feedback! We all really appreciate it!
On the path to protect,
Nicole.

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3 comments

  1. I am so enraged! If I could be there with you, I would be.

    “The huge gap between rich and poor, globally and within nations, is not only morally wrong; it is also a source of practical problems.” – Dalai Lama

  2. Any news or progress on finding out the real values of the captured dolphins and the breakdown of to whom and where the money goes?

    Elsewhere, we read $22,000, still a hell of a lot of money but a big difference from $300,000.

    Thanks.

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