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    Posted January 17, 2014 by
    Clarkston, Georgia

    Over 250 bottlenose dolphins await their fate


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     Martha Brock is an environmental attorney and activist in Georgia. She posted this iReport after learning about the alleged trapping of more than 250 bottlenose dolphins in Taiji, Japan, through the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, a non-profit marine wildlife conservation organization. Brock said she watched a SCCS live stream of dolphins being corralled into a trapping cove and was horrified by what she saw. “There are activists around the world that are calling the embassy and the press, but I knew I couldn't do much, so I wrote this iReport."

    The 2009 documentary “The Cove” depicted the annual butchering of the sea creatures near the Japanese coastal town of Taiji, and has sparked an international campaign against dolphin hunting. Brock said she hopes to bring awareness to activist groups like SCCS that document the hunts in Taiji. “They are there to bring daylight to this dark secret. If they were not there no one would know about this," she said.

    CNN was unable to reach anyone at the Taiji town office or the local fishermen's union for comment.You can read more about this story on CNN.com.
    - Jareen, CNN iReport producer

    On January 17, 2014, over 250 bottlenose dolphins were herded into a small trapping cove in Taiji, Japan, made infamous by the Academy Award-winning film, The Cove. The dolphins will be held until the brutal process of selection for the aquarium industry begins, which could begin as early as sunrise January 18.


    Among the captives in this community is a young albino bottlenose dolphin, an extremely rare child, and one which is likely to be among those kidnapped. The considerable monetary value of this albino and the other dolphins taken captive is established by aquariums and marine parks, modeled generally after the U.S. aquarium industry, that make millions from using dolphins as entertainment. The incentive to drive these dolphins is made lucrative by this monetary incentive more than any other.


    The fate of those not taken to perform in dolphin shows and exhibits is either death-by-spike or a process of being “driven” back to the open ocean by the same horrific cacophony generated by the “banger boats” that corralled them in The Cove. Those so driven will now be but a fractured remnant, without the youth of the next generation and likely without many of the elders to guide them. Those who escape capture or slaughter and are left to fend for themselves without their community are less likely to survive and thrive. With this process of capture/kill/drive the remnant, entire communities of dolphins who migrate along this coast of Japan are being decimated.


    The unrelenting drive by the Isana Fishermen's Union to capture and kill dolphins is matched by a commitment of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Cove Guardians to document the truth of this hunt for a public who is largely ignorant of this horror.  While The Cove brought the world's attention to Taiji, the hunt has continued till the present.




    Photo courtesy of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Cove Guardians

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