Japan Kills 200 Pregnant Minke Whales
Flouting an international ruling, Japan resumed minke whaling for ‘scientific purposes’ during breeding season.
Japan has killed 333 minke whales—including more than 200 pregnant females—as part of this year’s Antarctic whale hunt, according to the country’s Institute for Cetacean Research.
On Wednesday, four ships returned from their 115-day expedition to conduct “scientific” whaling activities. The hunt was in blatant disregard of the International Court of Justice’s 2014 ruling that challenged the scientific legitimacy of the program.
The International Whaling Commission, which regulates the industry, has banned commercial whaling since 1986, but an exemption for scientific studies remains. Japan has long been accused of using this exemption as cover for commercial whaling activities.
As marine mammal biologist Leah Gerber told National Geographic in 2014:
Once a Japanese ship lands a whale, there is some