Cruelty, Not Culture, in Japan’s Dolphin Hunt

February 22nd, 2014 | 1 Comment

Previously posted on: CNN

CNN blog in Spanish: CNN Spanish

Huffington Post: HUFFPOST

I just read, ” A Veterinary and Behavioral Analysis of Dolphin Killing Methods Currently Used in the “Drive Hunt” in Taiji, Japan,” in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science. And as we’ll see, the “new” method creates such terror that it would be illegal to kill cows in this manner under Japanese law itself.

The Japanese in 2010 announced a “new killing method.” It involves destroying the spinal cord with repeated insertion of a metal rod. Even on paper, the “new killing method” makes no attempt to damage the brain, which would at least end consciousness. In practice, the hunters splash around through the bloody water wielding their knives among the fully conscious, thrashing, squealing dolphins who are being executed among their family and friends.

Several veterinarians and behavioral scientists who watched a covertly recorded video wrote, “This killing method…would not be tolerated or permitted in any regulated slaughterhouse process in the developed world.” That includes Japan, oddly enough.

Japan’s own slaughter guidelines for livestock require that the creature being killed must be made to lose consciousness and be killed by methods “proven to minimize, as much as possible, any agony to the animal.” But those guidelines do not apply to whale and dolphin killing, which is governed by Japan’s Fisheries Agency… READ MORE; a full version of this article appears at under the title “How Hunters Slaughter Dolphins in Japan.” CNN

Tags: , , , , ,

One Response to “Cruelty, Not Culture, in Japan’s Dolphin Hunt”

  1. Mona says:

    Dear Carl,
    I would appreciate your opinion on why the annual slaughter of pilot whales in the Feroe Islands in Denmark is never mentioned in the same breath as Japan’s whale hunting. Surely if the issue is to save whales and dolphins from being killed, then the annual massacre in Denmark should come under the same spotlight? Defenders of the Feroe islanders say it is an ancient culture, this mass slaughter of pilot whales. I am not Japanese, but I know that whale hunting is also very much a part of Japanese culture, with harpoons dating as far back as 10,000 BC to show how old this tradition is.
    Please tell me it is not just the biased views of Western media towards this subject.

Leave a Reply