whaling

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Japan Kills 333 Whales in the Name of 'Science'

Many of the females were pregnant

(Newser) - Japanese whalers sailed to the Antarctic in December with the goal of killing 333 minke whales . Discover reports they returned Thursday having met that goal. Japan signed on to an international moratorium banning whale hunting in 1986 but has since been taking advantage of a loophole that allows killing whales... More »

Shipwrecks That Helped Doom a US Industry Are Found

2 went down while whaling off coast of Alaska

(Newser) - The hunt for an abandoned whaling fleet took NOAA archaeologists to what they describe as "one of the planet's most unexplored ocean regions": the waters off the Arctic coast of Alaska. There they say they've found two ships that have slumbered in the deep for almost a... More »

Hunted Whales Could Net Japan $33 Million

Whale meat fetches a hefty price in certain countries

(Newser) - Tuesday marked the beginning of Japan's controversial fishing expedition to hunt and kill 333 Antarctic minke whales in defiance of the UN . So why does Japan think killing these whales is worth earning the ire of the international community and environmentalists? Discovery reports the estimated value of $33 million... More »

Japan to Begin 3-Month Antarctic Whale Hunt

Critics say whales don't need to be killed for conservation research

(Newser) - Japan is wasting little time in resuming its "scientific" whale hunte : Its whaling fleet will leave Tuesday for the Antarctic for a three-month, scaled-down hunt, the government says, despite protests. Monday's announcement comes days after Japan submitted its final plan to the International Whaling Commission after the... More »

Japan Is Going to Start 'Scientific' Whaling Again

Country plans to defy UN court ruling

(Newser) - Japan's whale meat restaurants are set to get fresh supplies with the resumption of what the country's government insists is scientific whaling. The country has decided to buck last year's International Court of Justice ruling and send its whalers back to sea under a revised plan. Under... More »

California Blue Whales Show Big Rebound

Population returns to 'sustainable levels'

(Newser) - After decades of deadly whaling, the California blue whale population has come back with a vengeance. A study in the Marine Mammal Science journal says that the once-endangered mammal, which can be found from Alaska all the way down to Costa Rica, has bounced back to "sustainable levels,"... More »

UN Court Puts Kibosh on Japan's Whale Hunt

Finds JARPA II is 'not scientific'

(Newser) - Australia 1, Japan 0: The UN's International Court of Justice today ruled that Japan's whaling program, which it has long claimed is for scientific purposes, is just a cloak for commercial whaling, the BBC reports, in a case that Australia brought about back in 2010. The 16-judge panel... More »

Australia, Japan Take Whaling Brawl to the Hague

Legal battle in UN court could end annual hunt for good

(Newser) - Japan and Australia have begun battling it out in the UN's International Court of Justice over the former's annual whale hunt. Commercial whaling was banned in 1986, but Japan continues to kill minke and fin whales for what it argues is legitimate scientific research, reports the AP . "... More »

South Korea Ditches Whaling Plans

Outcry prompts shift to non-lethal study

(Newser) - South Korea has backed off its plan to resume lethal Japanese-style "scientific" whaling expeditions in its coastal waters, in the face of an international outcry, the Guardian reports. Instead, it will use non-lethal methods to study the massive mammals. The International Whaling Commission banned commercial whaling in 1986, but... More »

South Korea Plans to Resume Whale Hunt

Critics slam plan for 'scientific' whaling

(Newser) - South Korea has announced that it plans to join Japan in hunting whales for "scientific research." The country's delegation to the International Whaling Commission said the hunt for minke whales was needed "for the proper assessment of whale stocks," but anti-whaling countries and groups charged... More »

Sea Shepherd Founder Arrested

Paul Watson faces charges in decade-old incident

(Newser) - A leading anti-whaling activist has been arrested in Germany. Paul Watson, founder of Sea Shepherd, was busted on Saturday over a 2002 clash with a Costa Rican "illegal shark finning operation" off Guatemala, the group says in a statement. The group says the warrant is tied to an "... More »

Activists Tangle With Japanese Whaler

Sea Shepherd up to its usual tricks; Japan not amused

(Newser) - It's whaling season in the Antarctic Ocean, which means the rotten-butter-wielding activists at Sea Shepherd were busy making life miserable for the Japanese whaler Yushin Maru No. 2 today. Activists hurled paint and butyric acid—found in the aforementioned rotten butter—at the ship, as well as ropes designed... More »

Rogue Wave Damages Anti-Whaling Vessel

Steve Irwin racing to help stricken Brigitte Bardot

(Newser) - A rogue wave off Antarctica has dealt a major setback to conservationists' efforts to thwart Japan's annual whale hunt. The wave hit the Sea Shepherd Society's Brigitte Bardot as it chased the Nisshin Maru factory ship, badly damaging one of its pontoons, the BBC reports. Another boat, the... More »

Japan Uses Disaster Budget to Fund Whaling Hunt

Official defends the controversial move

(Newser) - Of Japan's $230 billion in supplementary budgets meant for tsunami reconstruction, $29 million will be used for … a whaling hunt. An official confirmed the move today, and simultaneously defended it, noting that some whaling towns were hit badly by the March 11 tsunami, and the funding will help... More »

US Threatens Sanctions on Iceland Over Whaling

Obama administration will consider trade and diplomatic penalties

(Newser) - The US is set to announce possible trade and diplomatic sanctions against Iceland for ramping up its whale hunts despite an international moratorium on commercial whaling. The Obama administration will cite Iceland under a domestic law that allows the president to act against foreign nationals or countries who flout international... More »

Activists Halt Japan Whale Hunt

Harassment making Antarctic hunt 'unsafe,' says fisheries official

(Newser) - The Japanese have temporarily suspended an Antarctic whale hunt because of repeated harassment by activists from the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. The hunt, aiming to bag as many as 945 whales, has been halted because of "violent" disruptions, said the nation's top fisheries officials. No one has been injured... More »

Wreck of Whaling Ship Has Ties to Moby-Dick

Its captain's ordeal on another ship inspired Herman Melville's novel

(Newser) - A fascinating bit of history is up from the depths of the Pacific off Hawaii: Marine archeologists have found the remains of an 1880s whaling ship that sailed from Nantucket, reports the Boston Globe . Researchers are happy enough to get a rare look at the tools and gadgets of the... More »

Whaling Protesters Deliberately Sank Own Boat

Its skipper says sinking was done for public sympathy

(Newser) - Verbal harpoons are flying in a public feud between the leader of the Sea Shepherd conservation group and the former skipper of the group's high-tech "Batmobile" boat the Ady Gil, which sank after a collision with a Japanese ship earlier this year. Skipper Peter Bethune says the boat was... More »

Team Digs Up London 'Moby Dick'

56-foot giant whale died 200 years ago

(Newser) - Archaeologists in London have discovered the bones of a whale the size of Moby Dick that met its end on the River Thames some 200 years ago. The 56-foot whale, which was as old as 100 when it died, was found buried beneath six feet of mud on the bank... More »

Whales Suffer Like Humans

Biologists cite studies as case against whaling

(Newser) - As the International Whaling Commission meets this week to debate the future of whaling, marine biologists say that whales are similar to humans in their capacity to feel and suffer. Recent studies show that whales—like great apes and dolphins—possess a self-awareness, which one neurobiologist says allows them to... More »

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