“Fishermen in the Japanese fishing town of Taiji catch up to 2,300 of Japan’s annual quota of 20,000 dolphins by herding them into shallow water.”- The Guardian
Photo Credit: Robert Gilhooly
As Japan has a longstanding tradition of whaling throughout its coastal regions, the international attention and condemnation surrounding whaling has generated ‘grave concern’ globally, according to BBC News.
BBC also reports that the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), a London-based independent conservation group, has said that in the past 70 years more than a million of these sea animals have been killed in Japanese hunts alone, despite well-voiced conservationist concerns.
Though the Japanese government has not commented, they have defended the practice as a source of livelihood and vital for scientific research.
The Bangkok Post says that campaigners looked at Japanese coastal whaling, which is different from the annual Antarctic whale hunt Japans holds, which draws its own harsh criticism. It has even provoked Australia to lodge a case with the International Court of Justice.
According to the Japan Daily Press, Japan set its 2013 catch limit for small marine mammals at 16,655, which is far below 30,000 that was caught annually before limits were set in 1993.
JPD also reports, Though, the EIA has believed that data is irrelevant and dated and still points to more recent data showing that Japan’s hunting is still the largest hunt in the world.