Taiji Update: Bottlenose Dolphin Superpod Tortured for Nearly 100 Hours

Divers grab dolphins during captive selection, Taiji, Japan

Photo credit goes to DolphinProject.net

On January 20, 2017, a superpod of over 250 Bottlenose Dolphins was rounded up and netted in the killing cove. This is the latest update on the capture.

After 99 hours of torture, panic, and stress, roughly 150 dolphins were driven back out to sea today, on January 24, 2017. These remaining dolphins are lucky that they were not slaughtered, but the pod still went through tremendous loss over these past four days.

First of all, these dolphins have been trapped in the cove with no food and no way of staying hydrated for four days. Wild dolphins usually eat 15-20 pounds of fish everyday, so these dolphins were starving and dehydrated by the time they were released.

Out of the roughly 250 individuals that were driven into the cove, 100 have been selected for life in captivity. These have been moved to sea pens, and unfortunately, they will likely be shipped off to irresponsible facilities that may keep them in small enclosures and deprive them of food for not participating in a show. A minimum of four dolphins died during the captivity selection process, and there could be more that sunk to the bottom and were not recorded. Throughout these four days, dolphins have been observed slamming their heads against skiffs, vomiting from stress and panic, injuring themselves as they desperately try to escape the hands of the hunters, and even rolling over and dying from the immense stress, panic, and torture. One dolphin managed to swim out of the nets, but it refused to flee, and instead stayed by the side of its struggling family.

On January 24, 2017, at 1:54 P.M., the remaining dolphins were driven back out to sea. However, because they are exhausted from fighting and struggling, starving, and have just come out of a traumatic situation, some may still die, some even from grief, as calves were ripped away from their mothers during the selection process.

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