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Iceland to monitor whale hunt cruelty

Following our call for an investigation into violations of the Icelandic Whaling and Animal Welfare...
Beluga whales in the wild

Beluga whale in River Seine dies after rescue attempt

A beluga whale that became trapped in the River Seine in France has sadly had...
Tilikum, the father of Nakai. © Paul Wigmore

Orca Nakai dies at SeaWorld San Diego

SeaWorld San Diego has announced the death of the orca Nakai. The 20-year-old male orca...
Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin © Mike Bossley/WDC

Last captive Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin to be freed in South Korea

Bibongi, the last Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin held in captivity in South Korea, is to be...

More power given to countries that kill whales for cultural and nutritional needs

Following yesterday’s vote against the creation of a sanctuary for whales in the South Atlantic, more bad news for whales emerged from the International Whaling Commission  meeting (the body that regulates whaling) in Brazil today with the passing of a proposal to allow some countries to have more control over the number of whales that they kill for nutritional and cultural needs – also known as aboriginal subsistence whaling.

The “bundle proposal”, as it is being called, was submitted jointly by Denmark (on behalf of Greenland), the Russian Federation, St Vincent and the US – all of whom have aboriginal subsistence hunting communities.

The proposal loosens regulations for subsistence whaling and gives more decision making power to the individual countries themselves and away from the IWC. This is particularly worrying because it involves increasing numbers of whales to be killed and allows an increase in whale kill numbers to be ‘carried over’ to a following year.

However, over the last few years Greenland in particular has abused previous rules by allowing whale meat to be sold for profit in stores and to tourists.

The new regulations passed today further weaken whale protection and give ammunition to commercial whalers. It was particularly disappointing to see the EU vote for the proposal without seeking to tighten regulations and so failing to fullfilling their mandate for whale protection.