“Inhumane” Drive Hunts Cause Dolphins To Suffer Intense Physical And Mental Trauma

Fishermen hunt dolphins in the town of Taiji, Wakayama Prefecture. KUMANO SHIMBUN/KYODO

Fishermen hunt dolphins in the town of Taiji, Wakayama Prefecture. KUMANO SHIMBUN/KYODO

Despite the fact that dolphins are incredibly intelligent, sociable, and sentient beings, we still choose to hunt them, either to death as part of traditional slaughters or to capture for display in marine parks and aquariums. Now, adding to the evidence that this practice is cruel and outdated, scientists are warning that the dolphins suffer severe physical and psychological trauma as a result.

Taiji drive hunt. Warning: this video contains extremely upsetting footage.

Publishing their findings in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, an international team of researchers conducted an analysis of previous research focusing on Japan’s dolphin hunts. During these “drive hunts”, flotilla fishing vessels herd small cetaceans into shallow coves by chasing them with an “aversive wall of sound” created by banging hammers on trumpet-shaped metal poles.

The practice targets a variety of small cetacean species, which, once cornered, are either slaughtered for meat or taken from the ocean to be displayed in aquariums or to perform in shows.

Read the full article here: IFLScience

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