Saturday, March 28, 2009

Wanna be terrorist bomber arrested.

A FISHERMAN faked a bomb threat against an anti-whaling ship after falling out with some of the crew, a court has heard.
Victorian skipper Kenneth James Archer has admitted phoning Hobart police on March 2 and stating there was a bomb on the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's boat Steve Irwin.

The ship was docked in Hobart after spending the summer chasing Japanese whaling vessels.

The Supreme Court in Hobart heard that Archer, 50, of Lakes Entrance, made the call while he was drinking with a "fairly panoramic view of the dock and the Steve Irwin".

"Your only motivation appears to be that you had a difference of opinion with members of the crew of the boat the day before," Justice Shan Tennent said.

The ship was evacuated while police and emergency services attended.

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is satisfied that the sentencing will put an end to the accusations and claims of some critics who have posted on the Internet that Sea Shepherd fabricated the "bomb threat hoax" as a publicity stunt.

IWPO member D. Teal had this to say.

what a loser"
Which we can bring to you as a blog exclusive!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The false choice.

The recent attempts by Japan to change the IWC were put into words by the WDCS quite well.

At this week’s intersessional meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in Rome, a proposal which would lift the ban by granting Japan legal commercial whaling quotas in its coastal waters is to be discussed. In return Japan would voluntarily reduce its controversial scientific whaling in Antarctica.

Now, a new report, ‘Small Type Whaling, A false choice for the IWC’, reveals that the longstanding case Japan has put forward to the IWC for these quotas is inaccurate and flawed.

WDCS’s Sue Fisher said ‘The reality is that Japan does not need coastal whaling and it is attempting to blackmail the IWC into doing its bidding. The real danger of the deal being considered is it implies that coastal whaling is the lesser of two evils.
“However, if adopted, it would lift the ban on commercial whaling and open the floodgates for other countries to restart or expand their own whaling. The IWC is being given a false choice.”

Friday, March 13, 2009

The IWC paradox!

Japan will fight to the end to protect Article 8 'scientific whaling'.
As a move of self preservation though the IWC needs to get rid of it.
While it exists the IWC does not matter. Nobody gives a dam about the IWC anyway. They can't touch you and they can't touch me.
And yet they are seen as the authority on whaling!

There is only one power in the IWC and that is the 75% majority in votes.
This has worked well for Japan. They buy the elephant ivory gathered by African poachers, and African nations vote to allow Japanese poachers to kill whales.

One hand washes the other and the trade in protected animal products has a lot of hands.
We have seen that William Hogarth may be little more than another shady Eugene Lapointe character. Only instead of sending 100,000 elephants to their deaths to feed the Japanese market William instead plans to send thousands of whale corpses.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

William Hogarths blunder....

In what is the most obvious result of the fools deal, Korea has now said it would like to resume whaling if Japan is given the go ahead to expand its Northern Pacific kill operations. (1) (2) Word is he has also awaken the slumbering Russian whaling industry.

I doubt this is what Obama had in mind.
I doubt this is what Japanese tax payers had in mind for their hard earned funds either.
Life is not fair, but it is a shame that the obselete cruelty of whaling lives on still. There is no longer an urgent need for any whale product. The cost is too high.

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Cove has landed

The film has now been acquired by Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions for distribution in the United States. The U.K.-based the Works Intl., in conjunction with James Atherton's Quickfire Films Fund, has acquired all other territories. In addition, Participant Media has signed on to perform outreach for "The Cove," working with nonprofits and community groups.

The film is an Oceanic Preservation Society presentation of a Jim Clark production, in association with Diamond Docs and SkyFish Films. The film is produced by Paula DuPre Pesmen and Fisher Stevens and executive produced by Jim Clark.

Link to Review in Variety Magazine

This is an important film and one a long time coming. Here at takasito theres a lot of interest building on what is a serious mile stone in dolphin protection. News as it comes!

They invested some big bucks and covertly planted cameras on the beaches, in the air, underwater and in the hills to capture every horrific detail of one of the cruelest and most monstrous massacres of wildlife on the planet.

The result is "The Cove," one of the most extraordinary wildlife crime films ever produced. This film documents and exposes the Taiji dolphin slaughter dramatically, effectively, covertly, and magnificently.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

When anti-SSCS thugs attack!

A recent blogging attack by the disturbed anti-Sea Shepherd thug 'shark diva' certainly went out of its way to attack a very fine lady. Knowing her myself I contacted her about the attacks, and was informed she was blocked from the very website attacking her!

Being a believer in freedom of the press and of Justice in Australia, I have offered to host her reply here.

The story has been pulled, and another with the correct information relayed will be done.
I believed i was talking to an exec producer to org Gemma Pitcher to do interviews for crew on the island, as Ive mentioned previously, I dont do interviews, I set them up for crew. I have done this many times before. The 'story' referred to is a garbled mess of information re the pilot whale stranding in Tas, a write up on the SSCS site and simple 'reinterpretation' by media. At no point did I say the Steve Irwin was at the sperm whale stranding or that there were marine bios and the like onboard. Thats just silly. The where abouts of the Steve Irwin is widely known as it is monitored closely by the media, and there is a film crew onboard.I did discuss the story referred to on the SSCS site briefly and org for HO to be contacted regarding further material (at this point no further info has been sent). I have nothing to gain by telling untruths re who I am (I dont think the position referred to in the 'story' even exists within SSCS) or where the ship was (tho i have little doubt you ll make up some reasons for me) and niether does SSCS, the comments regarding funding are silly also, how would any of these comments create funding. Guys, say what you like about me with the nasty comments and slanderous implications, but dont debate where the Steve Irwin was or whether that was said. Pretty much everyone knows where the vessel was, as it is closely monitored by the media and has a film crew onboard. It appears looking at previous bloggs of yours that this isnt the first time you ve written negative and slanderous words regarding SSCS and you re entitled to your opinions, even if they are based on misinformation.
Mistakes happen in the media, its not the first time and unfortunately it probably wont be the last.
Sharkdiver, you are a coward, a lier and a disgrace.
Your devotion to the Japanese Fisheries Agency is sickening and your 'green-washed' blog is a joke.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Australians in the dark!

Government in the dark on Japanese whaling
Media Release | Spokesperson Rachel Siewert
Tuesday 24th February 2009, 10:47pm

The Federal Government has no idea what whaling operations may have occurred in our own Antarctic waters, say the Australian Greens.

"Questioning in Senate Estimates tonight has revealed that the Australian Government does not know if any whaling occurred in our waters during the current whaling season," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"During estimates it was confirmed that the Government had not followed up reports from the Sea Shepherd that they had found at least part of the Japanese fleet in Australian waters."

"So, we don't know how long the fleet was in our waters, if whales were taken and if so how many. In addition, it seems that the Government doesn't even want to ask the Japanese about it," said Senator Siewert.

"The Government doesn't know what is happening because they failed to monitor these operations. One of the reasons given for not monitoring was because the Japanese were not supposed to be in Australian waters this season."

"It is incredible to believe that the Government can't confirm the Japanese were in our waters, if they took any whales or any other information about their operations," she concluded.


Bob Brown your a bloody legend mate!
Keep it up, you are showing the world what an Aussie can do!

Suspect Arrested for Threatening to Bomb the Steve Irwin

04-03-2009 03:23:PM

Suspect Arrested for Threatening to Bomb the Steve Irwin

The Tasmanian police have arrested a suspect who allegedly called police to say he had planted a bomb on the Sea Shepherd vessel Steve Irwin in Hobart harbor. The suspect called in the bomb threat from his own Victoria registered cell phone from Hobart. The police traced the call and identified the owner of the cell phone.

Police showed ships manager Benjamin Baldwin a photograph of the suspect and Ben recognized him as a person he refused to allow on the ship a few hours before the threat was made. Ben reported that the man had been bragging about being in Auckland when Greenpeaces ship the Rainbow Warrior was bombed. Ben thought he was acting strange and told him that he was not welcome to board the ship.

The name of the suspect has not yet been released.

There were only five crewmembers on the ship at the time the threat was made. Five other crewmembers were on King Island assisting with the rescue of stranded pilot whales and a few others were ashore in Hobart.


Let this be a warning to all terrorists. You will find no welcome in Australia.
We don't swing that way!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Bomb Threat on the Steve Irwin!

04-03-2009 04:29:AM

Bomb Threat on the Steve Irwin

Report from 2nd Officer Pedro Montiero

At around 11:15pm (Monday, March 2) Tasmanian Police came to the Steve Irwin gangplank and asked the gangplank watch Julie to get the highest ranking officer on board. They stood at the gangplank and reported to me that "someone called in a bomb threat about 20 minutes ago, stating that it would detonate in 30 minutes. You therefore have 10 minutes left." I immediately went to the bridge, rang the abandon ship alarm, than announced the bomb threat on the speaker system. There were five people on board besides me.

Five crewmembers were onboard, some crew were ashore and five others were on King Island rescuing stranded pilot whales.

In total, four police cars showed up. The police believe they have a suspect. They were able to trace the call, so they know where it was made, and where the phone is registered. After waiting past the bomb detonation time Ben and I searched the ship for any suspicious objects, then brought the rest of the crew onboard for a more thorough search. No bombs have been discovered.

The Tasmanian Police were very helpful in this matter and seem to think they have a good chance of finding the person responsible.


Sounds as if the Australian police will be happy to target actual criminals, as opposed to doing the Japanese Fisheries Agencies dirty work. Nice to see.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Leave the Minke alone!

1) The whaling debate is about killing animals that are either endangered (as in the case of Fin whales or J-stock Minke) or likely in a dramatic and mysterious decline (as in the case of Minke whales) OR important to other nations whale watching industries (such as Humpbacks and Right whales).

2) Some whales such as Blue whales and Right whales were hunted almost to extinction and are slowly recovering in population. Other whales such as Southern Minke have maintained a steady high population of around a million for around the last million years, yet have fallen to around 300,000 since the 1980's! Clearly an animals 'endangered' status must be measured both in past and future threats as both are very different issues.

3) As recently shown culling whales will not help fisheries. Whales are not eating all the fish, humans are eating all the fish. The oceans health is important to all mankind and it is irresponsible for one nation to put it at such great risk.

4) Japanese whalers usually kill % wise mostly pregnant female whales, which in recovering populations puts the genetic diversity of the species at risk. Japans research has been a very low standard & its closed doors secresy and reliance on lethal sampling ilogical.

5) The decline of Minke may be related to many different issues. Some that have been suggested are high infant mortality due to Crassicaudosis parasites, low fertility due to Brucellosis Bacteria infections in genitals, sunburn, eating plastic, ship strikes, bycatch, noise polution, ghost nets and the die off of around 80% of the krill that Minke eat. With these very real problems, and future potential ones as Antarctica melts the future of the Minke is uncertain at best. While the main cause of the decline is a mystery, it is folly to encourage whaling in any form.


Yea I know wheres the spell check.
Now I can back up every sentence there with a source and happy to do so.
But really I am more interested in why other people think its important to stick up for the Minke. The obvious reason really is that they are a very likable animal, as anyone who has dived with them on the GBR will attest.

Whale eating culture.

Due to media self-censorship and indifference among the Japanese public on the issue, a "whalers' sanctuary" has been created inside Japanese society.

It protects a small number of bureaucrats, whalers and politicians so they can enjoy vested interests in whaling and keep their nationalistic stance. All at the expense of Japanese taxpayers.~ source

From what I have read the Japanese only had a mainstream practise of eating whales for about 15 years following the end of WWII.

I will try find some stats for that, but for almost all of Japans whaling history, whale meat was only consumed in a few isolated areas.

Whale consumption had dropped by a lot before the 1986 ban on commercial whaling, as alternative meats became available on the market. Whale was seen as a boring food, that was important previously because it had been available and cheap! Many Japanese people were happy to have had a full belly thanks to Japans whaling at a time when many were going hungry!

But times have changed now. The whales killed by Japan are killed to provide an elite few and their pets with a luxury dish designed to show their power and wealth. The meat is contaminated and often comes from illegal poaching from wildlife sanctuaries.

It has often been said that many people who oppose whaling are hypocritical for eating other animals. But the Japanese eat other animals as well. If they were as contaminated with mercury like cetaceans are perhaps they would not!

That said each citizen of Japan eats yearly on average around 70kg of fish.

"Last year, 5500 tons of whale meat was supplied to the Japanese market. This includes whale meat which does not get eaten and is simply thrown away because it didn't sell. Even if we generously assume all of the meat was in fact eaten, that is only about 46g of whale meat per person , as opposed to 5.6kg of beef, 12.1kg of pork, and 10.5kg of chicken."

Japans secret whaling.

Japan leads the world with its whaling, being behind the slaughter of HUNDREDS of thousands of cetaceans in the past few decades alone. But while figures are released for Japans pelagic whaling in the Southern Ocean and Northern Pacific, and its coastal whaling and small cetacean hunts.... there is whale meat coming onto the Japanese market from unexplained sources. Some may be unreported bycatch, but others like the 2 mystery fin whales that were discussed at last years IWC meeting remain totally unexplained.

There is an interesting look at in this link which I will leave a few quotes from.

OSU researcher says Japanese whale killings hidden and proves that Japan's statistics on the endangered fin whales it has killed are bogus.

Baker and colleagues started their detective work when they bought whale meat from shops in Japan in 2006 and 2007. Using DNA fingerprinting, they soon discovered that the meat came from morefin whales than Japan has acknowledged killing.

"Clearly there must be an undocumented source of these whales," Baker said, "but we don't know what it is."

Now Fin whales are the second largest animals on Earth, it is said that even the Nisshin Maru struggles to process them. This raises the spectre that Japan may very well have a secret pirate whaling ship operating as the Soviets did in the 1980's.

For those interesting in some of the history behind Japans secret whaling operations I provide these sources.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10,

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Australia can lawfully stop whaling within its Antarctic EEZ.

While the Australian federal court case last year found that Japanese whaling in Australian waters is illegal there has been no arrests of Japanese whalers who still continue to poach whales from Australian waters despite the ruling. Pressure is begining to mount of the Australian government to take action against the whalers and uphold the law.

Australia has every right to fight the Japanese in court over whaling and still remain diplomatic friends and trading partners.

For those of you who do not know much about the issue, I reccomend checking out the pdf below.

Seminar paper delivered at the Australian National University, Canberra, 6 May 2008,
and the National Environmental Law Association and Monash University, Melbourne, 7 May 2008.

"There is no doubt that Australia is the greatest whale loving nation on Earth," said Swedish 1st Officer Peter Hammarstedt. "This country rocks."

Monday, February 23, 2009

Police raid Sea Shepherd, take Whale Wars Season II footage as evidence.

An armed squad seized 157 of Discovery Channel's raw videos, and navigational records from the ship in Hobart. The videos show the Sea Shepherd's clashes with Japanese whalers and may be given to the Japanese Government. A federal agent said yesterday's raid resulted from a formal referral from Japanese authorities and that police were undertaking preliminary inquiries into this summer's Southern Ocean confrontation.

OK so AFP Commissioner Mick Keelty said the allegations against Sea Shepherd relate to endangering the Japanese ship, the Yushin Maru III.

"On the 17th of February the referral [came] from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade," he said.

"But it was, when I say referral, it was simply onforwarding to us the allegations made in Japan by the director-general of the Japanese fishing agency."
So once again the Fisheries Agency flexed and the Foreign Affairs people jumped.
Japans strategy of letting the Fisheries Agency decide the nations foreign policy is surely a huge gamble?

Eighteen months ago the AFP investigated a complaint by Mr Watson against the Japanese authorities. In that case, the federal Director of Public Prosecutions decided not to prosecute.

"So in that sense we understand the legislation and the need to treat the legislation seriously and objectively for all parties," Mr Keelty said.

So the official complaint stemmed from the director-general of the Japanese fishing agency. Now the federal attorney-general would need to approve any prosecution arising from the raid on the Steve Irwin in Hobart! Or so says the Aussie Senate anyway. Obviously Animal Planet are not happy about the situation!

The television channel "has a team of lawyers working on it. That footage is extremely valuable to them. We are literally looking at $20 million worth of footage," Capt Watson said.

"I think the Japanese are far more scared of that footage than of us and the concern is, if it is kept as evidence, it will never see the light of day."

Now the Steve Irwin and Japanese whaling ships collided twice in recent months, and the activists have staged hit-an-run attacks on the fleet with rancid butter-filled bottles hurled from motorized runabouts, according to both sides.

The Steve Irwin was met by the AFP when it docked in Hobart on Friday afternoon (AEDT) and officers confiscated the ship's log book and video footage.

The footage taken by wildlife documentary group Animal Planet depicted some of the most dramatic whale-killing scenes ever seen, crew on the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society ship said.

The police, who had search warrants, kept the crew on board as they searched cabins.

Senator Brown has written to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd calling for an immediate explanation as to how the raid could be in the nation's interest.

"On the face of it, this is outrageous behaviour by the Australian government to secure favour from the Japanese authorities," he said.

"And if it wasn't, what on earth is the Australian Federal Police up to?

"It is an extraordinary raid, that defies the imagination."

Senator Brown said he could think of no other explanation for why the ship was raided other than to take footage from respected international media organisations to provide the Japanese with prosecution evidence.

"If this action was taken at the behest of the Japanese authorities it will outrage many Australians.

"The Australian Federal Police can expect detailed questioning from the Greens at Senate Estimates this coming week."

Does all of this remind anyone else of this recent history?

Southern Bluefin Tuna (New Zealand v. Japan; Australia v. Japan) 1999

Professor Crawford represented Australia in 1999 in a joint action with New Zealand against Japan over its huge so-called experimental catch of southern bluefin tuna in a case with parallels to the "scientific" whaling program Canberra brands a sham.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Australia gives in to the Japanese bully tactics.

An armed squad seized 157 of Discovery Channel's raw videos, and navigational records from the ship in Hobart. The videos show the Sea Shepherd's clashes with Japanese whalers and may be given to the Japanese Government. A federal agent said yesterday's raid resulted from a formal referral from Japanese authorities and that police were undertaking preliminary inquiries into this summer's Southern Ocean confrontation.

Greensleader Bob Brown called on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to explain the raid. "On the face of it, this is outrageous behaviour by the Australian Government to secure favour from the Japanese authorities,"he said.

"I'm also told that the Japanese used absolutely outrageous tactics, like sound wave attacks on people in helicopters, which could have brought down those helicopters from the Sea Shepherd."

Senator Brown said he could think of no other explanation for why the ship was raided other than to take footage from respected international media organisations to provide the Japanese with prosecution evidence.

Combined with Japans bribery of IWC members, Peter Garretts back stab of the Sea Shepherd society has once more left the future of whales as bleak indeed.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Obama vs Whalers feb 23rd!

There is no dislike of Americans here at Takasito, only frustration at their willingness to let the whaling issue stagnate. Its not that the Americans have not done more than their share already for cetacean protection, its more that after doing so much in the past... that to have them doing so little lately is a shock! Without American support New Zealand, Australia and Chile are simply ignored by the Japanese.

As you probably know, the International Whaling Commission is working on a plan to allow Japan to kill more whales.
Who brokered that plan? The American delegate, William Hogarth.
Want to know who appointed Hogarth to the IWC?
George W. Bush.

There may be time for President Obama to send Hogarth home and stop this deal. Please sign the petition.

On the 23rd of Feb Obama will meet with the Japanese Prime Minister. The U.S. position on the issue of whaling has been, and probably still is, more important than the IWC position. It is perhaps a good time to send the man an email advising him to take the oportunity to resolve the whaling issue so that diplomatic ties can be strengthened in this challenging time.

Never forget that Americans have been behind some of the most important whale protection measures, will be a large part of any future solution and have been the most important players in anti-whaling since 1940 when they quit doing it! Let us hope Obama brings ballance to the force. We need the USA to lead the charge on article VIII.

Before last November’s election, Greenpeace USA asked him: “If you are elected President, what concrete steps will you take to convince Japan to stop whaling?

Obama replied: “As president, I will ensure that the US provides leadership in enforcing international wildlife protection agreements, including strengthening the international moratorium on commercial whaling. Allowing Japan to continue commercial whaling is unacceptable.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Joji Morishita

"These men have been painted as heroes," said Joji Morishita, consulate for the Japanese government's powerful Fisheries Agency, which sponsors the whale hunts. "They're not heroes."


So the power tripper Joji Morishita wants to lock the lads Toru Suzuki & Junichi Sato away for a decade to boost the Fisheries Agencies ego. Well they may find Japans image will pay dearly for that choice. Japans sponsorship of illegal whale poaching, & support for the ivory trade is unacceptable in this day and age. Its a disgrace, and history will record Toru and Junichi as hero's.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

People to email over Japans illegal whaling.

Props to Animal Planet for providing such a handy list!

Everyone has an opinion about the issues — and a voice. Want yours to be heard by the right people? Here's how:

Write a letter, send an e-mail or place a phone call to one or more of the following representatives and non-profit organizations. State what's on your mind. If you're expressing an opinion, use facts to back it up. And remember, stay calm and courteous, as this increases your chances of being heard.

(Please note that the following list of contacts is not exhaustive.)

* The United States of America is an anti-whaling nation. It stands opposed to a resumption of commercial whaling, but does allow for small-scale aboriginal whaling.

Contact the President
Contact Your Senator
Contact Your Representative

* Japan is a pro-whaling nation currently engaged in a long-term scientific research program to assess the commercial viability of whale stocks.

Contact the Prime Minister of Japan, Yasuo Fukuda

* Sea Shepherd is an anti-whaling non-profit activist organization that uses non-violent, direct-action tactics to thwart whaling activity.

Contact Sea Shepherd

* The Institute of Cetacean Research is a privately owned, non-profit institution that conducts scientific research on whales. Their legal status is authorized by Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Contact the Institute of Cetacean Research

* Greenpeace is a non-profit activist organization, part of whose mission is to document and non-violently interrupt the hunting of whales.

Contact Greenpeace

* Norway is a pro-whaling nation that engages in commercial whaling. Having filed an objection to the International Whaling Commission (IWC) commercial whaling moratorium, it is not bound by it.

Contact the Prime Minister of Norway, Jens Stoltenberg

* Australia is an anti-whaling nation committed to whale protection. It has established the Australian Whale Sanctuary to protect all whales and dolphins found in its waters.

Contact the Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd

* Iceland is a pro-whaling nation that resumed small-scale commercial whaling in 2006 following five years of research whaling.

Contact Iceland's fisheries minister, Einar Kristinn Gudfinnsson ~ (note e-mail link at bottom)

Japans whale and dolphin quota for 2009.

If we look at which nations have killed great whales since 1986 when the 0 catch limits were imposed.... you will notice that Japan has killed by far the most each year. Theres no figure for 2009 yet but it is very unlikely to be less than the 2008 in either the Northern Pacific OR the Southern Ocean. There may be a small reduction in the numbers of dolphins killed.

An interesting thing about that link is that it does not name the species that are caught in Japans commercial coastal whaling. Or the other cetaceans killed by Japanese whalers .

As a point of interest it should be noted that there is no upper limit to the number of whales or dolphins Japan can assign itself as a quota.

I will update this post when/if Japan releases any stats.

EDIT ~ actually the IKAN website did link to this pdf file that shows the body count for small cetaceans. No heads up on the 2009 quota though.

Stink bombs are just some rotten butter.

If the Japanese whalers are so worried about 'chemicals' that smell bad.... why did they get a job cutting open dead whales in the first place?
I know most of you have not been around a dead whale, but even a fresh one don't smell too charming once ya get into the blood and guts of it all.
Ya have to argue whether the stink bombs made the place smell better or worse.... and if the 'acids' inside the whale were more dangerous than the ones inside the stink bombs?

Infact considering the very real risk of catching the ball rotting disease brucella while hacking up whales, theres the chance the stink bombs had an anti-septic effect and actually improved worker safety.

Seriously, fill a bottle with butter and leave it to ferment. You will soon have your fearsome chemical ACID weapon.

The mind boggles at the terms the Japanese would use to describe a thrown chicken egg! Probably something like this.


Oh of course there would be a link to hydrogen sulfide of some type too. lol

But seriously the stink bombs are just rotten butter, the reason they smell so bad is due to the Butyric Acid content of the rotten butter. Butyric Acid is certainly not the deadly chemical weapon the Japanese make it out to be.

In 2008 we saw the Nisshin Maru claiming injury of two crew from a butyric acid attack.
Paul Watson responded to the claims with

"My crew did not injure anyone," said Captain Watson. "This is just a spin designed to get public sympathy for men who are themselves vicious and ruthless killers of whales."

The Japanese claim that two whalers were injured when six liters of butyric acid were tossed onto the flensing deck of the Nisshin Maru.

According to Japan's Fisheries Agency spokesman, Hideki Moronuki, the two Japanese crewmen sustained injuries from the attack after one was hit by an empty container of acid and the other had acid squirted in his eye.

"Nice try, but a total fabrication," said Captain Watson. "The butyric acid is contained in one-liter glass bottles, all of which broke upon contact with the flensing deck of the Nisshin Maru. These bottles are sealed and the acid released after being broke, so it is impossible to be hit by an empty bottle. Secondly, no one squirted butyric acid into anyone's eye, and even if they did, this is a simple non-toxic butter acid, basically rancid butter. It will not cause eye injury. If we had tossed marshmallows on the deck of the Nisshin Maru, I'm sure the whalers would try to claim they were injured by them"

Whale Wars ~ pilot!

I'd like to add a blast from the past, the whale wars pilot episodes. Originally shot from both the Sea Shepherd side and Japanese side and then was going to be editted together. Who is guilty about dolphin drive clashes? And why is it always Taiji people film ?
I hope everyone is still excited about seeing the new Taiji movie The Cove! Made to give people an up close look at the wonderful Japanese 'Whaling Culture'.

One thing is for sure Whale Wars Season II is going to have some magical scenes in it!
Its just a shame we will not have footage of the Japanese soldiers faces in Indonesia when they were refused entry.

“We asked the Japanese whaling ship to go and it has left. We don’t want to support any illegal fishing,” said Sumarto Suharno, head of the East Java Natural Resources Conservation Office, or KSDA.

Endangered Minke whales.

You know.... if you say the Southern Minke is endangered, then perhaps you are right. If you say the Southern Minke is not endangered then perhaps you are right.

The point is that we do not know if the population is crashing, stable or increasing. Most of the data seems to point towards a very dramatic decline. Can it be possible that even the worlds most common whale will be extinct in 66 years! The rate of decline suggests it will be.

The situation as it stands is that Southern Minke are Data deficient!

Japanese whalers killing every whale they see is not going to improve this situation either. We need population trend data, not a butchers list of protected animals that have been served up in Japanese diners.

If we look at the authority on endangered animals we find the Minkes future is far from sure.

Here is a picture of Minke population estimates.

Red List Category & Criteria: Data Deficient
The data analyzed by standard methods suggest a reduction of approximately 60% between the 1978–91 period and the 1991–2004 period. However, alternative hypotheses to explain the apparent decline are still under investigation. If the decline is real, its extent and causes are currently unknown, and it may still be continuing. The corresponding population reduction thresholds (criterion A2) are 30% for Vulnerable and 50% for Endangered, measured over a 3-generation time window, which in this case is estimated to be approximately 66 years (22 years per generation). If the decline proves to be largely or mainly an artifact, or proves to have been transient in the light of analyses of more recent data, the species would qualify as Least Concern. If it were real, the species would qualify as Endangered. Pending resolution of the uncertainties relating to the apparent decline, however, the species is listed as Data Deficient (DD).

The IWC discussed this in 2007. The decline was specific to minke whales; estimates for other species (blue, fin, killer, humpback) increased over the period; an explanation for the decline would need to account for this.

I'd like to add that ~ comparing declines caused by harvest followed by recovery from harvest controls to declines from loss of habitat and climate warming are apples and oranges. Whales surviving past threats is different to them surviving the future ones they face.

While genetics has revealed a stable Minke population for the last million years or so, the threats that now face Minke are going to be the largest they have ever faced before. Both of these threats revolve around the krill.

Talley’s claim Japan should be allowed to hunt whales because they were doing it sustainably is sadly misinformed. There is no evidence for the alleged “sustainability” of Japanese whaling. In fact, despite Japan’s insistence that there are plenty of whales given the Southern Hemisphere minke whale population numbers over 760,000 animals, these figures have been discredited by scientists and withdrawn by the International Whaling Commission’s Scientific Committee. Research has shown that minke numbers are closer to 250,000 – less than a third of those claimed – and the IWC has repeatedly called for Japan to end its hunt. Furthermore, scientific research has shown that the minke whale population is further subdivided into three separate species, and then into local and regional populations with little inter-migration between them. This means even a very small kill could result in localised extinction in a particular area. Japan’s plans to expand its kill to include species classified as endangered and vulnerable makes a mockery of any claims of sustainability.
Past commercial whaling was characterised by a serial depletion of one whale stock after another, and massive illegal and unreported kills of over 90,000 whales which drove many of the larger species to the verge of extinction. Despite over forty years of protection, Southern Hemisphere Blue whales still number as few as 400 animals, and may never recover. As Muller points out, “We have only to consider the lessons of history to see whaling is not sustainable – particularly when “managed” by the industry responsible for exploiting it.”
Source for above quote.

So what about this population explosion of Minke that the Japanese like to claim?

The DNA from minke samples shows such genetic diversity that the Antarctic population must have been extensive for the past 200,000 years, says a Stanford Universityresearcher. That long history challenges the view of some whaling advocates that the 8-meter-long minkes used to be rare in Antarctica but flourished as other whales dwindled. This boom supposedly keeps populations of bigger, competing whales from growing.

The shape of the Antarctic-minke tree indicates "a couple of bumps and troughs", but "no real booms and busts," says Palumbi. For the recent part of its million-year history, the minke whale population has numbered between 500,000 and 1 million. ~ source

So there is no surge in Minke numbers. Rather we have a species that appears to be in VERY rapid decline. They are not roaches or weeds to be pulled. Considering the Japanese practise of killing the pregnant females, combined with the loss of fertility due to brucella infections, and the loss of their krill food source to climate change..... and we have the perfect scenario for the worlds most common whale to be made extinct by Japan.

This is unacceptable, and while we may not be able to clean all the plastic from the ocean, or stop climate change, WE CAN end whaling BEFORE the Southern Minke is pushed to the edge of extinction as the J-stock Minke around Japan already have been!

Illegal Japanese whaling.

While there are many reasons people consider Japans whaling illegal, there is perhaps no more clear example of it being so than IWC regulation 19(d). Japan breaks this regulation by using a factory ship based kill fleet to take Endangered Fin Whales in the IWC Southern Ocean Whale sactuary. This is different to the Australian whale sanctuary! Sanctuaries where established after the over hunting period before 1986, but Japan has consistantly abused the regulations around them.

Adopted by the International Whaling Commission in 1994, the Southern Ocean Sanctuary provides long-term protection to around three quarters of the world's remaining whales on their feeding grounds.

The sanctuary is designed to allow the natural restoration of an ecosystem devastated by commercial whaling. Some whale populations had been reduced to a tiny fraction of their original numbers by commercial whaling. From an initial population of around 250,000 blue whales only about a thousand now remain.

In 1994, the IWC voted by 23 to 1 to adopt the majority of the Southern Ocean south of 40ºS as a sanctuary in which all commercial whaling is prohibited. Japan was the only country to vote against the Sanctuary and lodged an objection to the extent that it applies to minke whales. The Southern Ocean Sanctuary came into effect on 6th December 1994 for an indefinite period, but was reviewed in July 2004 at the 56th meeting of the International Whaling Commission. Its the continued existence was put to a vote and was the most significant vote for whale conservation taken in the IWC since the morotorium adoption many years previously.

The Japanese are in violation of IWC regulation 19(a). The IWC regulations in the Schedule to the Convention forbid the use of factory ships to process any protected stock: "19. (a) It is forbidden to use a factory ship or a land station for the purpose of treating any whales which are classified as Protection Stocks in paragraph 10. Paragraph 10(c) provides a definition of Protection Stocks and states that Protection Stocks are listed in the Tables of the Schedule. Table 1 lists all the baleen whales, including minke, fin, and humpback whales and states that all of them are Protection Stocks.

In addition, the IWC regulations specifically ban the use of factory ships to process any whales except minke whales: Paragraph 10(d) provides: “(d) Notwithstanding the other provisions of paragraph 10 there shall be a moratorium on the taking, killing or treating of whales, except minke whales, by factory ships or whale catchers attached to factory ships. This moratorium applies to sperm whales, killer whales and baleen whales, except minke whales.” Fin and humpback whales are both baleen whales and are subject to this moratorium.

To get around what is a blatant breach of IWC regulations the Japanese abuse the Permits system. But really...

In the discussion of these permits in the Commission, an additional factor raised is that the catches take place within the Southern Ocean Sanctuary declared by the IWC in 1994 (to which Japan lodged an objection with respect to minke whales). If a Sanctuary is in place, it can be argued that information on improving management of whaling in that region is unnecessary. On many occasions, the Commission has (by majority vote) passed a Resolution urging Japan not to issue a permit for these catches.

Mean while REAL whale scientists that have been ignored for decades by the Japanese Fisheries Agency are starting to fight back. Japans Fin Whale black market has been exposed once more and brought legitamacy to those that oppose Japans whaling under the UN charter for wildlife.

Forget the Australian Navy or Sea Shepherd shutting down the Japanese whale poachers.
An international team is already forming to do it once and for all.

There is no difference from a poacher who kills a rhino, to one that kills a Fin Whale.
Equality for all

Monday, December 29, 2008

Angry Australians.

Theres only one man I know of able to unite Australians and Kiwi's in happy hatred. His name is Glenn Inwoods and he is the hype man for the Japanese Whalers. Here is an example of him is full swing.

Now, people here have asked me why people in Australia support Paul Watson? Well a good part of the reason is Glenn Inwoods. Yes he IS hated in NZ too. Elsewhere in the world he is known for his desire to expand whaling by many times to take tens of thousands of Minke yearly.

His quotes today have once again put fire in the bellys of Australians. Looks like we may yet see some naval action after all!

For the moment though, our hopes are with SSCS.
Shut these whale killing criminals down Paul!
And do it quickly!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Encounter II

Sea Shepherd Clashes
With Whaling Fleet in Australian Waters

0730 GMT December 26th, 2008
Australian Antarctic Territorial Waters

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society ship Steve Irwin closed in on one of the vessels of the Japanese whaling fleet at 0730 Hours GMT (1930 Hours Sydney Time) on December 26th off the coast of the Australian Antarctic Territory north of the Mawson Peninsula.

The Keiko Maru emerged from dense fog in front of the Steve Irwin. The Sea Shepherd crew pursued and delivered 10 bottles of rotten butter and 15 bottles of a methyl cellulose and indelible dye mixture.

“That is one stinky slippery ship,” said Sea Shepherd 2nd Officer Peter Hammarstedt of Sweden.

The Japanese ship was ordered out of the territorial waters of Australia by Australian citizen Jeff Hansen from Perth, Western Australia. The message was delivered in Japanese.

As the Steve Irwin came alongside the starboard side of the Keiko Maru, the whaler steered hard to starboard and struck the Steve Irwin lightly crushing part of the aft port helicopter deck guard rails on the Sea Shepherd ship. There was no serious damage to either ship.

The Sea Shepherd crew’s objective was to intimidate the Japanese fleet and to keep them moving Eastward out of Australian Territorial waters. The Sea Shepherd crew have been pursuing the fleet eastward for a week. There is only 90 miles left before the fleet enters the New Zealand Zone.

“Our objective now is to chase them out of Australia’s Economic Exclusion Zone.” Said Captain Paul Watson. “I have a chart here and it clearly states that these waters are Australian EEZ. There is an Australian Federal Court Order specifically prohibiting these ships from whaling in these waters. We have informed the whalers they are in contempt of this Court ruling.”

There is no doubt that Japanese whaling in Australian waters has been severely disrupted. Since Saturday, the Sea Shepherd crew have chased the Japanese fleet for 400 miles through heavy fog, dense ice and nasty weather. During that time they have not been able to kill any whales.

“We still have them on the run and we intend to keep them on the run for as long as our fuel resources allow.” Said Captain Watson.

For the Japanese version, try here and here.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Run rabbits, RUN!

In excellent news the Sea Shepherds have located the Japanese whalers in French waters and are now giving chase through Australian waters. You can read about it here and here. The nation of Brazil has also declared its waters a whale sanctuary in a stand against Japanese whalers. Japan has also admitted its whaling is cruel, no great shock but nice of them to say so. I did notice they neglected to say they gut shoot the whales to avoid damaging the whales ear wax, the wax so important to Japanese whale 'scientists'. Now all we need is for someone to tell us what use the age of a dead whale is? Japan has also asked the world for advice on its PR image! Heck you can even win prizes! Somehow I don't think my advice of "stop slitting dolphin throats and gut shooting protected whales in a wildlife sanctuary and people will like Japan more!" is going to win me the CD of origami designs though :(

All in all an interesting few days. The Japanese whalers are on the run, and I have had lots of visitors here! thanks for that! I will try to update more often if I can just stop posting on the very addictive animal planet "Whale Wars" forum!

In other news Australia has still not dropped the threat of legal action in international courts against Japans illegal whaling but its now less obvious in the news as you can see in these 1, 2, 3, examples. Although it must be said Garrett has become a total joke as far as people concerned with the environment are concerned.

Of interest to many is a plan to get sister cities with Japanese cities involved in whale and dolphin protection. If you have facebook this thread goes into the basics of it all.

Thanks for checking out my blog!
I will try keep it updated as this latest wacky Japanese Antarctic whaling season unfolds! For those of you who were fans of the Whale Wars program I want to give you a sneak preview snippet of a report from season two that I hope will make many of you breath a sigh of relief!

From: Crew - Steve Irwin
Subject: Update 1: Emily Hunter Antarctic whale saving
Received: Wednesday, December 17, 2008, 2:46 AM

Sea Shepherds ship finally arrived on the 10th in the morning and I settled into my new home for the next several months – a big black menacing looking 180-foot patrolling vessel originally bought from Scotland, the land of my ancestors. With a million put into upgrades including a helicopter hanger, this ship had a air of professional eco-warriors. No longer is Sea Shepherd the rag-tag ship with water leaking through and bolts busting off. Instead, the ship was upgraded and ready for war. The crew too is different, more professional and even militant than amateurs. There is a professional helicopter pilot, doctor, engineers, welders, ex-navy, ex-captains, ex-cops. Without a skilled trade in ones back-pocket, one almost feels useless (for me, my written word is my tool, visit in the Blogs section, you can read my ongoing campaign blogs – called the Polarized series). The crew included 45 volunteers from around the world including a crewmember from Japan for the first time. And a fierceness, conviction and focus I have never seen so pronounced in the Sea Shepherd crews before. Oh, and don’t forget, environmentalism has gone reality TV, Animal Planet is shooting their second season of ‘Whale Wars’ with this campaign.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Commercial Whaling Re-started

Already 2 nations, Iceland and Norway have protected whale meat being sold in Japanese supermarkets. The latest shipment is 65 tonnes of endangered fin whale meat caught by Hvalur hf (Iceland), and five tonnes of minke whale meat caught by the Norwegian company Myklebust Trading.

Once again the whale meat has been tested for contaminates on a special scale as opposed to the broad Japanese seafood contaminate standard scale. As usual the results of the tests are kept secret from the public.

Time will tell how quickly other nations will attempt to re-start their own commercial whaling following the lead of these 3 nations. The second age of Cetacean slaughter is upon us, may god have mercy upon the worlds whale stocks, for it is obvious the Japanese will not.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Japan and Australia.

2500 unique views!
Go me! lol

I became involved in the whaling issue when the Japanese government announced its plans to launch a kill mission against the Humpback whales that I enjoy watching at my local beach. That was over a year ago now, and the facebook group to protest Japans whaling that I joined with a few thousand members, now has over 250,000! We all have our own reasons but one thing is clear, the future of the whales is a global issue and by a massive % the world wants the whaling ended.

Propaganda wars have raged accross the internet and there has been lots of nationalist mud slinging between the nations of Australia and Japan in particular.

I just read this bit of news here and noticed two bits that stood out.

"Japan has nil national interest in the whaling industry," Taniguchi continues. "The stake for Japan is near zero. If Australians criticise the Japanese auto industry, Japan must do everything possible to protect the auto industry. This is not the auto industry."

He is writing a long piece for a Japanese magazine, Wedge, to ask Japanese to consider the balance sheet of national interests. On the other side of the ledger, he contends, "this issue is doing substantial damage to Japan's image in Australia, the US, Canada, the UK, New Zealand," the entire English-speaking world.

For a moment this year Australia hoped the whaling problem would disappear. In May Taro Aso, then secretary-general of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party, said if Australia's feelings towards Japan were hurt unnecessarily "only in order to sustain such a small industry", then Japan should "address this issue as quickly as possible", according to an official record of his remarks. Aso made fun of the whaling industry's pretensions to scientific legitimacy.

"Has anyone heard of any scientific results coming from Japan's whaling program?" he posed rhetorically.

So thats interesting but it still ended with a sting.

Many countries have an ugly blemish that mars the total image and makes other peoples recoil in distaste. China has Tibet, the US has Guantanamo Bay, Turkey has Armenian genocide, and Japan has whaling. Uneconomic and increasingly costly to Japan's image, Taniguchi expects it will disappear in a few years. But in the meantime, he fears that escalation could damage the interests of Australia as well as Japan. "Japanese children would be horrified to learn that Australians routinely kill and even eat kangaroos, which they think are much cuter than whales."
PS: If you are interested in Kangaroo conservation and protection try out these two links!
Link1, Link2.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The science of wrong.

"Practices are not prohibited because they are wrong, they are wrong because they have been prohibited."
~ Prof. Leslie A.White, The Science of Culture (New York, Farrar, Strauss and Cudahy, 1949)

This brings us to the Japanese saying they may lower their kill quota, then not, then maybe. Well... theres a very good reason why they may lower it and it has nothing to do with external pressure.

Rather it is because the kill fleet has lost their fuel re-supply and meat off-loading ship (The Oriental Bluebird) because it was busted doing illegal things & fined the maximum penalty and then de-flagged.

That and the fact that last year the Japanese didnt get any of the enormous endangered Fin whales, but only because they didnt find any. A Finwhale is a massive animal, the second largest ever, smaller only than a blue whale. So its doubtful they themselves expect to find and kill 50 Finwhales. Then again they have already killed 100 of the only slightly smaller sei whales Balaenoptera borealis and they did get 50 of the rare and fast bryde's whales Balaenoptera brydei so it is possible. Even so Finwhales, like brydes, sei and the kings the Blue whales are the most massive creatures. To kill and process is a major undertaking and conditions need to be right

Still the kill fleet includes 8 powerful fast hunter killer boats and a massive floating factory mother ship. This is a large kill mission, the largest of great whales on the planet.

So all the talk by the Japanese of dropping some of their tally in exchange for some sneaky change may all be a bluff, but it matters not. The kill fleet may only be setup to take at max half the butcher list, but if all goes to plan they won't get a single whale.

The anti-whaling crew will never give up.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A win for the humpbacks!!

In what is great news to read.

"We received a lot of pressure from around the world, but particularly Australia and New Zealand, so we will not be catching humpbacks as part of the research programme," said Mr. Takaya.