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US government refuses to shield endangered right whales from lethal ship collisions

The Biden administration in the US has denied an emergency petition that seeks to protect...

Automated cruelty – vending machines in Japan now dispense dead whale

In an effort to prop up the cruel and declining whale hunting industry in Japan,...

The Yogscast raises an ocean-sized donation for WDC

The New Year started with a bang for whales and dolphins thanks to Bristol-based gaming...
Russia captive orca NARNIA_2017_2 CREDIT Oxana Fedorova

Narnia the orca dies at Russian dolphinarium

Narnia the orca performs in Russia © Oxana Fedorova Narnia, a wild orca taken from...

Research suggests up to three million whales were slaughtered in last century

Researchers in the US have released a study that estimates the number of whales killed by industrial hunting in the last century is close to three million. 

This global slaughter is thought to be the largest cull of any creature (total biomass) in human history.

The devastation is still being felt today. Some estimates indicate that the number of sperm whales is down to one-third of their pre-whaling population, and that blue whales have been depleted by up to 90%. Some species populations have begun to recover, but others  – including the North Atlantic right whale (above) – are now staring extinction in the face. 

The researchers could not put an accurate figure on the true scale of the slaughter because they could not trust some of the information provided by the whalers regarding the numbers of whales they killed.  

Find out more about the history of whaling.

About George Berry

George is a member of WDC's Communications team and website coordinator.