News and blogs

News

Narwhals and Bowhead whales threatened by new Arctic shipping routes

A NASA-funded study has warned that marine creatures like whales and dolphins will be exposed to greater threats from boat traffic as sea ice continues to melt in the Arctic.

The study found that narwhals in particular would be under threat as new shipping lanes opening up as a result of sea ice melting due to global warming. Some scientists predict that even the North Pole may be passable within a matter of decades.  

Australian Government to block Japanese whaling proposal

Japanese Government officials have reportedly confirmed that they will propose the resumption of commercial whaling at the next meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC – the global body that regulates whale hunts) in September.

Australia and other anti-whaling nations are now set for a showdown with Japan at the IWC meeting, which will be held in Brazil.

Two white whales sighted off Australia and New Zealand

White whales are very rare, but in the last couple of days there have been sightings off both New Zealand and Australia.

An adult white humpback whale, possibly the famous whale known as Migaloo, has been seen off the coast of Gisborne on New Zealand's North Island.

Meanwhile, off Lennox Head in New South Wales, a white whale calf was sighted by a passing paraglider. The mother of the calf has the usual dark colouration of a humpback whale.

Noise pollution chronically stresses whales and dolphins

Whales and dolphins depend on sound to stay together in their family groups and whales used to be able to go on large hunting expedition to find their food, calling each other when they found it.

However, according to a new study underwater noise pollution means they can only hear each other for around 10 miles.

WDC presents petition to Carnival and asks them to stop exploiting dolphins

Today, WDC representatives, Rob Lott (End Captivity campaigner) and Julia Thoms (campaigns manager) met with senior Carnival staff at their headquarters in Miami. We were there to present more than 27,000 signatures from WDC supporters who want Carnival to stop offering their cruise ship passengers shore excursions to swim-with-dolphins attractions. If you were one of the 27,000 who signed our petition - thank you, we were there on your behalf.

Blogs

50 shades of grey – watching orcas in Scotland

Every year, people gather on cliff tops in the north of Scotland to watch out for orcas, some of whom come down from their winter herring-hunting grounds in Iceland on the look out for seals in the early Scottish summer. Run by the Sea Watch Foundation and supported by WDC, we call this event Orca Watch.

Why Carnival needs to stop exploiting dolphins

Would you believe that more than 550 dolphins are held captive in 68 facilities across Mexico and the Caribbean? These dolphins are imprisoned primarily to amuse cruise ship passengers on ‘shore excursions’. Every day, hundreds of tourists disembark the cruise ships and pour into dolphin theme parks to hug, kiss and swim with the captive dolphins.

Iceland: A new dawn for whales and dolphins?

Will 2018 be the year that I can finally visit beautiful Iceland purely as a tourist, rather than a campaigner? Maybe it’s not surprising that this fabled ‘land of fire and ice’ should offer visitors a host of contradictions, but the juxtaposition of whale watching and whale hunting in the same waters is surely one of the most logic-defying examples on the planet?

Judges to rule on Morgan's future as orca's fate returns to court

In June 2010 a young female orca was found off the coast of the Netherlands. She was malnourished and alone so she was captured under a rehabilitation and release permit. Almost eight years later Morgan, as she was named, is still in captivity. In November 2011 she was transported to the privately owned Loro Parque on Tenerife in the Canary Islands, Spain.

What prospects for whales, dolphins and porpoises in 2018?

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is the world’s main authority on the conservation status of species. Its ‘Red List of Threatened Species’ – known as ‘The Red List’ - is the most comprehensive inventory we have of species at risk.