Somebody warn South Pacific whales!
From the LA Times:
Japanese whalers go back on the hunt for 'science'
Gray whales have embarked on their southbound migration along the West Coast and, thankfully, they aren't being trailed by meat hunters posing as scientists.
No such luck for cetaceans in the extreme South Pacific, where Japanese
whalers aim to harpoon, over the next several months, 935 minke whales,
50 fin whales and 50 humpback whales.
It's the first legal hunt of endangered humpbacks since an international moratorium was put in place in 1963.
And anyone who believes the expedition is purely for science, as Japan contends, or that humpback whales need to be killed to measure pregnancy rates, might be led to believe the sun rises in the west.
"Only 50 could hugely impact a small breeding population" of any of the many groups of humpbacks that migrate to the area, says Alisa Schulman-Janiger, a researcher with the American Cetacean Society.
Critics say the argument for the expedition is merely a ploy to skirt the international moratorium placed on all commercial whaling in 1986 but which allows hunts that serve a scientific purpose.
By the way, what is our government doing about this, you ask? Well, do a Google news search and you'll see very little, though a group of eight Senators did send Japan a letter of protest, which is better than nothing. Well, at least Greenpeace is trying to do something about it - and blogging about it, too - even if it will probably ultimately do little to stop this barbaric "scientific" hunt. Yes, there are plenty of other environmental issues to worry about, and plenty of other endangered animals in our own backyard, but the hunting and slaughtering of helpless animals - that don't even live anywhere near your homeland - and lying to the world about the reasoning behind it is indefensible.