The Faces of Taiji

A picture is worth a thousand words, or so the saying goes. In this case, 884 = the number of dolphins Dolphin Project Cove Monitors recorded as being driven into ‪‎The Cove‬ during the 2015/2016 season. Many more are certain to have perished during the hunts themselves, but there is no possible record kept of these numbers.

From the captives taken from their pods and a wild world, to the dolphins slaughtered, hidden under tarps in the killing cove, we’ve assembled a small gallery of individuals. Victims of greed and power, these animals paid the ultimate price for our consumption of both their meat and their entertainment value.

While the drive season ended on February 29, hunters will now shift to offshore whaling, swapping banger poles for harpoons. Pilot whales are especially vulnerable as the permit to hunt this species is valid until the end of May.

Dolphin Project is already planning for our 2016/2017 campaign in Taiji, but our fight to defend those who don’t have the ability to protect themselves continues throughout the entire year. Want to get involved with our campaigns? Learn more by clicking on the links at the end of this blog.

Bottlenose dolphin drive, Taiji, Japan

Bottlenose dolphins, including several babies attempt to flee hunters during drive, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Captive bottlenose dolphin floats listlessly in sea pen, Taiji, Japan

Captive bottlenose dolphin floats listlessly in sea pen, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Bleeding Risso's dolphin guided away from nets and into the killing cove.

Bleeding Risso’s dolphin guided away from nets and into the killing cove to be slaughtered. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Captive Risso's dolphin begging for a dead fish meal.

Captive Risso’s dolphin begging for a dead fish meal, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Pilot whales huddle together, searching for a way to escape.

Pilot whales huddle together, and one large whale is stuck in the nets, searching for a way to escape after being driven into The Cove. All but one would be slaughtered several hours later. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Captive pilot whale with skin lesions, Taiji, Japan.

Captive pilot whale with skin lesions, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

Panicked striped dolphins throw themselves against nets in attempt to escape hunters, Taiji, Japan

Panicked striped dolphins throw themselves against nets in attempt to escape hunters, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

From a vast sea to a filthy tank, striped dolphins displayed at the Taiji Whale Museum, Japan

From a vast sea to a filthy tank, striped dolphins displayed at the Taiji Whale Museum, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

 

The face of non-human sentience: captive Pacific-white sided dolphin, Japan

The face of non-human sentience: captive Pacific-white sided dolphin, Japan

 

A prayer for peace in The Cove, Taiji, Japan

Under a glorious sunset, a prayer for peace in The Cove, Taiji, Japan. Photo credit: Dolphin Project

Your help has never been more needed in supporting our critical work in Taiji

 

Click here to donate

 

Take the pledge to NOT buy a ticket to a dolphin show

 

Shop our store and wear your support for dolphins

 

Learn more about becoming a Dolphin Project Cove Monitor

 

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in the USA (Tax ID 47-1665067), and donations are tax-deductible.

 

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About Cara Sands

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It might be true that we don't recall many moments from our early years. However, Cara's first memory of a dolphin had her begging her parents to ask the trainer to let the dolphin go! The problem with captivity was evident to her, even as a 4 year-old child.

A writer by trade, Cara has researched, investigated and documented dolphins suffering in captivity. From documenting dolphins incarcerated in buildings, cut-off from fresh air, sunlight and normal socialization to researching cases of animals imprisoned in solitary confinement, Cara is a dedicated dolphin welfare advocate.

It is her belief that education equals empowerment. The more information shared, the better our choices and knowledge of how to act as a positive and respectful voice for dolphins across the world.

Cara is based out of Canada and makes time whenever possible to observe dolphins in their natural environments. She is writing her first fiction novel but knowing her, the marine world will play a prominent role in her book!

"The use of animals for entertainment is nothing more than an abuse of dominance. Some of the most sentient species on the planet have been exploited to incomprehensible levels, all due to their inherent benevolence. Ironic, considering that we turn to the abused themselves for displays of humanity."
~ Cara Sands

Author: Cara Sands
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