Japanese fishermen kill dolphins in controversial tradition

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

The poor dolphins!

Every year, Japanese fishermen trap dolphins in a cove for slaughter, and conservation groups from the US and the UK are trying to defend the sea creatures.

This Tuesday, fisherman rounded up more than a hundred of the mammals and either killed them for meat or sold them to aquariums. According to the conservation group Sea Shepherd, at least 41 bottlenose dolphins were slaughtered.

There are many individuals who are concerned about the practice, such as the US ambassador to Japan, Caroline Kennedy. She tweeted: “Deeply concerned by inhumaneness of drive hunt dolphin killing.” However, not all officials see this as a problem.

“It’s sensible to respect the position of others,” said Yoshinobu Nisaka, the Wakayama prefecture governor. “It’s a little illogical to speak about abuse just because dolphins are being killed.”

Even Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga defends the fishermen, stating the practice is “one of our country’s traditional forms of fishing, and it is carried out appropriately in accordance with regulations.”

According to Japan, they are not breaking any local laws or international policies with their dolphin-killing habits.

Featured image courtesy of Sea Shepherd on Facebook. Image of trapped dolphins courtesy of Sea Shepherd.