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"The Whales Tale"
Topic: Saving the Whales - Again!
|By: LeRoy French
February 28, 2009
I am not sure how many of you out there are familiar with the battle
between the Sea Shepherd conservation group and the Japanese
whaling ships. During the past 3 months a raging conflict has been going
on in the Southern Oceans between these two groups. It came very
close to being physical. The fight of course is about Japan killing whales
which they claim is for scientific purposes. Under this guise it is the only
way they are allowed to do this.
However, the whale meat ends up in
their markets for sale. (It supposed to be a delicacy.) Sea Shepherd of
course knows this and in a huge effort the past few months on their ship
‘Steve Irwin’ they tried to prevent the Japanese from killing whales. This
killing is taking place in the Antarctic Whale Sanctuary.
Masayuki Komatsu, Formerly Japan’s Alternate Commissioner to the
International Whaling Commission (IWC) was quoted as saying,
“Whales are the cockroaches of the sea”. WOW! How do you deal with
Most ‘Great Whales’ are endangered. Example: “The Blue Whale”,
possibly the largest mammal to live on Earth. The largest one seen was
33 metres long and weighed in at about 190 tons. During the 20th
Century it was hunted to the brink of extinction. There are only 2300 left in
the Southern Hemisphere.
“The Right Whale”, there are three recognized species of this whale.
They are so-called because they were the ‘right’ whale to hunt. It swam
close to shore and floated when killed. There are 8,000-10,000 left.
“The Humpback”, once heavily exploited has been protected since the
1960’s and we are happy to say is on the increase. 30,000 in the
Southern Oceans and about 15,000 in the Northern Pacific.
“The Grey Whale”,is one of the most endangered in the world,
numbering about 130. This is the northern Pacific specie. The eastern
Pacific gray has recovered to around 20,000. Known for its epic migration
from the cold waters of the Bering Sea to the warm waters of Mexico to
breed. A round trip journey of about 20,000km. Unbelievable!! What’s
important to know about the Northern Pacific specie is that if the death of
three females occurred it could mean the extinction of the species.
The sad part about all of this, is that some whales live up to about one
hour after being speared with an explosive harpoon, which is supposed
to create immediate death. Others are shot full of bullets and feel the pain
and agony of multiple gunshot wounds before slowly dying. What a way
to go for a specie that has resided on our Earth for millions of years. There
are of course many other whale species that are endangered, but the list
is to long for this article.
And to top it off, whale meat is filled with mercury and very toxic. This is a
Don’t hassle the Humpbacks!! Leave our “Gentle Giants” alone.