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More important ocean areas for whales and dolphin protection identified

Scientists and observers from many different countries have identified and mapped 36 new Important Marine...

Whale meat fetches record high at Japan auction

Sei whale meat is being sold at a record high in Japan according media reports...

Rescuers find young girl’s body surrounded by dolphins

Reports from South Africa about a tragic drowning off Llandudno beach, Cape Town say that...
The Yushin Maru catcher ship of the Japanese whaling fleet injures a whale with its first harpoon attempt, and takes a further three harpoon shots before finally killing the badly injured fleeing whale. Finally they drowned the mammal beneath the harpooon deck of the ship to kill it.  Southern Ocean.  07.01.2006

Moves to overturn whaling ban rejected

Last week, the 68th meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC, the body that regulates...
All policy news
  • All policy news
  • Create healthy seas
  • End captivity
  • Prevent deaths in nets
  • Stop whaling
  • Strandings
Port River dolphins

New report reveals 100,000 dolphins and small whales hunted every year

When you hear the words ‘dolphin hunts’ it’s likely that you think of Japan or...

Minke whale hunts stop in Iceland

Iceland’s commercial hunt of minke whales has ended for this year. The common minke whale is the...

Pregnant whales once again a target for Japanese whalers

Figures from Japan's whaling expedition to Antarctica during the 2017/18 austral summer have revealed that...

Did Icelandic whalers really kill a blue whale?

*Warning - this blog contains an image that you may find upsetting* They say a...

Icelandic whalers breach international law and kill iconic, protected whale by mistake

Icelandic whalers out hunting fin whales for the first time in three years appear to...

Doubts remain after Icelandic Marine Institute claims slaughtered whale was a hybrid not a blue

Experts remain sceptical of initial test results issued by the Icelandic Marine Institute, which indicate...

Japan set to resume commercial whaling

Reports from Japan suggest that the government they will formally propose plans to resume commercial...

End the whale hunts! Icelandic fin whaler isolated as public mood shifts

Here’s a sight I hoped never again to witness. A boat being scrubbed and repainted...

Australian Government to block Japanese whaling proposal

Japanese Government officials have reportedly confirmed that they will propose the resumption of commercial whaling...

Icelandic fin whale hunting to resume

Iceland’s only fin whaling company, Hvalur hf,  announced today that it will resume fin whaling...

SOS alert for whales off Norway!

I have to admit to bitter disappointment when I arrived in Tromsø, northern Norway, a...

Norway's whaling season begins

April 1st saw the start of the whaling season in Norway. Despite a widely-accepted international moratorium...

Tokitae Totem Pole Journey reaches Miami Seaquarium

The Lummi Totem Pole journey for Tokitae reached its final stop at the Miami Seaquarium last month, but tribal members and fellow protesters, including Orca Network, were not allowed to enter the marine park.  The Lummi Nation of Washington State traveled more than 3,000 miles cross-country from Seattle to Miami to raise awareness for Tokitae (also called Lolita), the last surviving member of the endangered Southern Resident orca community held in captivity.

Tribal members stayed outside the Seaquarium with their specially-carved totem pole, dedicated to Tokitae, singing and speaking to her in their language and playing her family’s calls.  Tokitae was taken from her family in the infamous Penn Cove captures of 1970, and has been held captive for nearly 48 years.  Estimated to be at least 4 years old at the time of her capture, she is now over 50, the age of the elder matriarchs and pod leaders in the wild Southern Resident population.  She should be the matriarch of her own family now, but instead has lived in solitude, without the company of another orca, since 1980.

The Lummi Nation supports the ongoing effort to retire Tokitae to a sea sanctuary in her home waters, and recently joined the legal battle to secure her freedom.  Tokitae was granted the same endangered species status as her family members in 2015, which has opened new legal avenues to improve her welfare and procure her retirement.  The Lummi are now trying a new tactic, including Tokitae under the 1855 Point Elliot Treaty.  They have received support from the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, a coalition of 57 tribes around the Northwest.  The Lummi consider orcas as their kin (the quel lhol mech ten, the people under the sea) and view it as their duty to bring Tokitae home and return her to her family.

The Totem Pole made stops in major cities along its route to Miami to participate in events and blessings raising awareness for Tokitae, her family, and their plight.  The Seaquarium continues to reject efforts to retire Tokitae and insists she is happy and healthy in the U.S.’ smallest orca tank.