|< The Price Dolphins Pay to Entertain Us
Aquarium Industry Spurs Dolphin Slaughters
For 25 years Blue Voice has fought to end the killing of dolphins in Japan with considerable success. However, in 1999 dolphin hunters at Futo, Japan conducted a brutal slaughter of dolphins which outraged the world. International reaction was so huge that Futo turned away from this cruel practice. This allowed a new enterprise, dolphin and whale watching, to grow up and flourish.
Photo taken Nov 10, '04 using telephoto lens because fishermen sealed port to conceal their brutal work.
But during the fall of 2004 BlueVoice.org executive director Hardy Jones interviewed the head of the Futo section of the Ito fishing cooperative and learned they planned a new dolphin hunt. The official was quite clear in saying that demand from the aquarium industry was the prime reason for capturing the dolphins. They would not conduct the hunt while Jones and other environmentalists were in town. But four days after Jones left, the fishermen found a pod of one hundred bottlenose dolphins and herded them into the harbor. Of these dolphins they took 16 for the dolphin slave trade, they killed three for "science" and they allowed the rest to go.
Without doubt the fact that they let so many dolphins free is due to the intensive scrutiny BlueVoice has maintained at Futo as well as the friendships we have developed with the local whale and dolphin watching and tourist community. Now the highly successful dolphin watching businesses at Futo are in jeopardy from the reactivation of dolphin hunting.