Update: Orcas Trapped in Ice in Japan Have Escaped Danger!

Update (February 7, 2024): Thank you to everyone who contacted officials in Japan regarding the group of orcas who were trapped in thick sea ice. News sources now report that some of the ice melted or shifted enough that the orcas were able to escape!

These magnificent animals are now free to live as nature intended, but other animals around the world are still in dire need. Please see PETA’s urgent alerts to find out how you can speak up for them.

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Original post:

Early on the morning of February 6 in Japan, a fisher contacted the Rausu Coast Guard Station to report seeing a pod of orcas stuck in an ice drift not far from shore. Heartbreaking drone footage shows the animals struggling to free themselves, to no avail. The initial witness reportedly told a local news station that they “seemed to be struggling to breathe.” Among the estimated 13 orcas observed, three or four are reportedly calves. In 2005, a pod of orcas became trapped in drift ice in the same area—and tragically, most died after no intervention was made.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind