Petition to the Fisheries Agency about dolphin hunting, and its inside story.

February 8, 2014
Petition to the Fisheries Agency about dolphin hunting, and its inside story.



★Please stop the dolphin hunting.
We submit the petition to the Fisheries Agency.
Is this really Japan? There were some surprising events.
Here I report to you about the details.



Dolphin fishing is in the jurisdiction of the Fisheries Agency, International Affairs Division, whale fishing group.
I called them to make the appointment to submit the Petition concerning dolphin fishing.
He said that there are some procedures for submitting it.
He needed time to check the procedures, and called me back a few minutes later.
Then, unwillingly, I had to explain everything about the contents of letter.
It sounded like he was questioning my real intentions.
I was cautious at first. But I wanted to have a constructive conversation, and decided to talk.
Then his superior came on the phone and said he had heard the conversation, and that they won’t accept the petition.
I said I don’t understand why the Fisheries Agency, which has jurisdiction over dolphin fishing, won't accept the demands letter.
I will bring it anyway. The Fisheries Agency, International Affairs Division, whale fishing group, decides the annual number of dolphin to capture.

The Fisheries Research Agency (an independent administrative bureaucracy, and a "golden parachute" group related to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries) does research for whale fishing groups.
He said go to the Fisheries Research Agency, and also the Ministry of environment, if this letter is concerning animal welfare.
I just wanted to make an appointment, but he started an argument about why cattle and pigs are ok, but dolphins are not ok.
I didn't want to have that argument on the phone.

I was quite surprised that he was so coercive and emotional.

I wanted to make the appointment, not to argue.
What’s wrong with the whale fishing group?
The nation brings a petition. The government has to accept it.
I give the phone to the lawyer. That ended the refusal to accept the petition.
But then he said why don’t you send it by post mail?
Our lawyer said that no, we will bring it.
If you want to argue, we will that time.

We submitted a proposal to the press club of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries for a press conference about our petition to the Fisheries Agency.
But the press club said that they can’t hold the press conference because the dolphin fishing is national policy promoted by government.
So we had to apply to the press club of the Ministry of Environment.
I believe journalists should stand as if on the bow of a ship, telescope in one hand, using the power of the pen to protect the nation from the oppression of governments and their judicial administrators.

We thought it would probably be difficult, and went there one hour early.
But at the reception, they said to send it by post mail. The whale fishing group won’t accept it if they don’t agree with the contents of the letter.
I explained that I told them by phone that we would be bringing this letter.
But the poor guard didn’t know what to do.
The guard called the Resources and Environment Research Division, but this petition should be received by the whale fishing group.
We waited for one hour in the cold lobby of the Fisheries Agency.
Finally a person in charge of the whale fishing group came down to the reception desk, and received the petition to the Fisheries Agency and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
There was no receipt stamp, only his signature.
For the time being, at least we could submit the petition.
He said that normally a petition is sent by post mail.
This is the first time they have received one face to face. (???)
We were unable to document all of this thoroughly because they had insisted on a condition forbidding taking of photos or video when the person in charge received the letter.
I was surprised by their caution.
In the past, when we brought a petition to the Ministry of Environment, we took photos, and we had some time to discuss the issue.
This time, they tried to turn us away at the door, and accepted the petition unwillingly.
We were also confused about the corresponding attitude of the press club. As a citizen of this country, I feel uneasy about our nation's future.

Democracy is violated more and more.
How can the bureaucracy be so oppressive?
For the issue of dogs and cats, the people’s interest has increased, and there is a Diet members caucus for it. Also some media report about it sometimes.
But very few now focus on the slaughtered dolphins in the hidden gulf as a social problem.

The question of how we can change is tied to that of how we can explore and spread information.
Please support us.
Please give us any information.
We do what we can do.
We will never give up.
Regardless of how, we want to have them stop.


We submitted the petition about stopping dolphin fishing on February 6, 2014 to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and the Fisheries Agency.
It will also will be sent by registered letter.
The press conference will be at the Ministry of Environment.
We, the Animal Network Japan, consist of 157 groups from all over Japan.
Our aim, since May, 2011, has been to share information and solidarity.

We, Inuneko Kyusainowa’s main activity is to protect dogs and cats. But this time, we submitted the petition to the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the Fisheries Agency, Wakayama prefecture, Taiji-cho, and the fishermen’s cooperative.

We want to let people know, in Japan and outside of Japan, that there are many people in Japan trying stop the dolphin fishing. As an animal protection organization, we especially want to show the extent of inhumanity involved with dolphin drive fishing.


Please watch the movie “THE COVE”.

Filming of it by hidden camera was criticized.
Also theater showings of it were harassed by right wing groups.
There are some problems concerning this movie.
But in fact, this movie exposes the actual situation of dolphin fishing in Taiji, which we didn’t know was happening.

The brutality is so inhuman and cruel, they have to hide it behind plastic sheets and wooden boards.
What is happening in Hatajiri gulf is a kind of slaughter not used on cattle and pigs.
It's against animal welfare policies in developed countries.

I reviewed the material about how they kill the dolphins in Taiji, including the video, and analysis by the veterinary medicine and ethology (animal behavior) community.
“Instantaneous death” was sophistry by the government and prefecture.
Even if the highly skilled driving of a harpoon into the spinal cord of the dolphin is done perfectly, it is not possible to kill a dolphin, a big mammal, instantly. During the slaughter, fishermen must be concerned about their own safety, not theories of animal welfare.
A harpoon is driven into a head and the back many times.
The brain isn't damaged to the point of eliminating pain.
They cork it so that blood does not flow into the sea.
This extends the time it takes for death to occur.
It can involve bleeding to death in agony.
I really hope that Japan will stop allowing such cruel slaughter.


The dolphin drive fishing started 1969. We can’t say this is "tradition".

The main purpose is not for food, but the sale of live dolphins to aquarium parks.
The Whale museum in Taiji sold them to China for 520,000 yen per dolphin. (from Taiji town office).
Aquariums should educate us about the symbiosis of humans and nature, but in fact they support the drive fishing.
The World association of Aquariums and Zoos has forbidden the purchase and import of dolphins which were captured by cruel drive fishing.

The dolphins that are chased into Hatajiri gulf are sorted by the aquarium trainers, and captured alive.
The data says that the price is about 700,000 yen for one dolphin.
The remaining dolphins are killed for food, and sold at prices less than a one-tenth of that.
The government doesn’t acknowledge that the dolphin meet contains mercury surpassing acceptable health levels. The media doesn’t report on issues contrary to national policy.

Dolphins live for about 30 years, but the average life span of dolphins in the aquariums or museums is 4 years.
When one dies, the next replacement will come from Taiji.
I have heard that all the dolphins die from stress.

In Japan, the aquariums support this cruel dolphin drive fishing.
It is important to speak out loud, and reform this system.

The aquariums and the zoos capture the wild animals, and force them to live in a small environment, and then kill them by stress.
This is nothing but abuse. Around the world, more ethical aquariums and the zoos are starting to abolish this practice.
I am wondering whether the aquariums and the museums that buy dolphins from Taiji know they are accomplices in this cruel dolphin drive fishing.


There are several hundred fishermen belonging to Taiji Fishermen’s cooperative.
But there are only 24 dolphin fishermen. (from Taiji town office).
Most of the fishermen work with shrimp and fish. There are some people in Taiji who want to stop the cruel dolphin drive fishing.
But as they are living in a small town community, they can’t speak out against the authorities.


We have been speaking about the issue of killing or mistreatment of dogs and cats, and dogs and cats abandoned in Fukushima.
We were not connected with the dolphin fishing issue.
But this is really a serious situation and we have to speak aloud about the cruelty and illegality of dolphin fishing.
The national government, and Wakayam prefecture, should know this fact.

It is against the national interest to continue the cruelty of dolphin drive hunting, exposing us to global criticism under the name of “traditional culture”.

This planet is not just for humans.
It is necessary to live together in piece with all life-forms.
We must immediately cease inflicting fear and pain on innocent animals.
The budget for killing people and animals, and for military or scientific (?) research, should be used for support of the 24 Taiji fishermen livelihood reformation after the abolishment of dolphin drive fishing.

Please stop the dolphin fishing.



We sent the petition about dolphin hunting to the embassies of various nations, Vatican city, the Pope, the Japanese government, Wakayama prefecture, and Taiji fishery cooperative. Animal Network Japan, together with TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital and Hokkaido Nature Conservancy, sent the petition about dolphin hunting to the embassies of various nations; Vatican city, the Pope, Japanese government, Wakayama prefecture, and the Taiji fishery cooperative.


テーマ : 動物愛護
ジャンル : ペット





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Message from Akiko Yui, President and Founder of TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital
I believe that helping animals in need, existing in symbiosis with animals, and fostering a loving heart lead to an improvement in one’s character of kindness and generosity. The killing of animals due to decisions made by administration goes against my firm belief in preventing cruelty to animals. Animal Rescue Fund’s most important goal is to reduce the number of animals killed in Japan to zero by urging administration to change, reform, and improve the prevention of cruelty to animals. In order to reduce the number of animals in need, we work to raise awareness and support for the importance of sterilization operations. Each year, we spay and neuter more than 1000 stray cats. We are always putting animals up for adoption to help those lives already born in finding a loving home.

TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital:
We first opened our TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital in February of 2011 in an effort to make our dream a reality - to lower the number of dogs and cats killed in Japan to zero. At our hospital, we spay and neuter cats to reduce the number of unfortunate stray cats. Our hospital strives to help unfortunate animals in need of medical care.
The lives of numerous pets and livestock were lost as a result of the unprecedented earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan on March 11th 2011 and the radiation disaster caused by the stricken Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Animal Rescue Fund goes directly to the 20km evacuation zone around the stricken Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant to rescue animals.
Animal Rescue Fund is based in Kanagawa Prefecture’s TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital. Therefore, the animals that we rescue from Fukushima Prefecture are brought to TNR Japan Animal Welfare Hospital located in Kanagawa Prefecture. Here, the rescued animals receive medical care and are returned to their owners or are put up for adoption.
We also work in urging the government and administration of Japan to support the protection of animals in need.





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