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Katie looking for dolphins

My magical island adventure – proof you don’t have to leave the UK to have amazing dolphin encounters

You don't have to travel outside of the UK to enjoy awesome wildlife encounters. Around...
Risso's dolphin: WDC/Nicola Hodgins

Remarkable Risso’s dolphins – how we’re studying them to protect them

And just like that, another season of field research studying remarkable Risso's dolphins came to...
Dead dolphins on the beach

Faroe Islands whale and dolphin slaughter – what have we done and what are we doing?

The massacre of 1,428 Atlantic white-sided dolphins at Skálafjørður on the Faroe Islands on 12th...
© WDC

The horror – reflecting on the massacre of 1,428 dolphins on the Faroe Islands

Like you and millions of people around the globe, I felt horrified by the news...
Bottlenose dolphins in never-ending lockdown at Loro Parque, Tenerife

The whales and dolphins trapped in never-ending lockdown – hearing their stories

Every whale and dolphin in captivity is an individual with a life history and around...
Orcalab

Surviving not living. Why we have to end lockdown for captive whales and dolphins

I first visited OrcaLab in British Columbia over 30 years ago and vividly remember my...
Shorewatchers

Our volunteer citizen scientists are making waves in Scotland

I'm lucky enough to do a job that I love. For the last seven years...
The dolphins, including a newborn, got into trouble in Stornaway Harbour - WDC/Nicola Hodgins

Success for emergency rescue after dolphins got trapped in Scottish harbour

I'm stationed for a month on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. We've...

More orcas captured in the Okhotsk Sea, Russia—When will it stop?

Three orcas (killer whales) have been captured in the Okhotsk Sea in the Russian Far East, according to sources at the Far East Russia Orca Project (FEROP). The first one, captured in early July, was moved through Sakhalinsky Bay on July 15, 2015. Since then, two more have been captured, also thought to have been caught in Sakhalinsky Bay.

Of the three, two have been captured by TINRO, the Russian Pacific Scientific Research Fisheries Center, based in Vladivostok in charge of coordinating fisheries research in the Russian Far East (Pacific) waters. The other one was caught by a local team thought to be hired by either by the White Sphere/White Whale/Aquatoria group of companies or by Primorsky Aquarium in Vladivostok which opens its new facility this autumn.

These captures contravene expert advice. In October 2013, the world’s orca scientists and Russia’s ‘State Ecological Expertise’ of marine mammal scientists advised that a zero quota to capture killer whales be given. This advice was refused in 2014. TINRO recommended keeping the quota at 10 as in previous years. We still don’t know population sizes of these orca ecotypes and communities in the Okhotsk Sea. If previous orca captures that occurred in the US, Canada and other countries are any indication, we may be seeing entire pods and communities being disrupted for decades, or even removed entirely.

More on the fate of orcas in captivity.

Help WDC protect all orcas – Adopt a whale today.

Tall dorsal fins on male orcas

About Erich Hoyt

Erich is a Research Fellow at WDC and Co-chair of the IUCN Marine Mammal Protected Areas Task Force. He is a director of the Far East Russian Orca Project (FEROP). View references to Erich's published material on Google Scholar. Follow Erich on Twitter.