Japanese whale hunters have finished their latest so-called ‘scientific’ expedition off the coast of Abashiri, Hokkaido, killing 47 minke whales.
The Japanese Fisheries Agency will now analyse the age and stomach contents of the whales in the name of scientific research, and report the data to the IWC (International Whaling Commission – the body that regulates whale hunting).
Nine males and 38 females were caught during the killing season, from June 11th to June 26th.
This whaling expedition is one part of the Japanese Northwest Pacific coastal scientific whaling programme planned for 2017. Separate from this, the highly controversial offshore scientific whaling in the Northwest Pacific also continues despite criticism from the IWC and international scientific experts that the hunts are ‘unjustified, and should be halted’.