This week in Taiji, Japan, dolphin hunters trapped a superpod of 300 dolphins in the notorious cove and began tearing the families apart, choosing the youngest, prettiest dolphins to sell to aquariums and selecting others to be slaughtered. The area is heavily guarded to prevent animal advocates from interfering, but Blue Cove Days volunteer Liz Carter captured the tragic scene on camera as one mother dolphin tried to fight off the divers who jerked and pulled her baby.
As the heartbreaking video shows, the mother dolphin attempts to knock the divers off her baby, who struggles to get free, while other dolphins thrash their tails in the divers’ direction. But the humans are too numerous and too strong, and they haul the young dolphin into their boat in a net, likely to be sold to an aquarium.
The annual Taiji dolphin slaughter continues because people keep buying tickets to swim with dolphins and to see them held in miserable tanks in captivity.
If you can’t stand to watch the video, please, don’t support “swim with dolphins” programs or captive marine mammal displays. If you love dolphins, let them be free.