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I watched the new Animal Planet TV Series Whale Wars for the first time yesterday and I was actually taken aback on how little I knew about the whaling situation in the pacific ocean near Antarctica.Â Whale Wars is a new TV show that chronicles Captain Paul Watson and the rest of the Sea Shephard Conservation Society as they try to deter the Japanese Commercial Whaling vessels from killing hundreds of whales in the ocean under the false guise of scientific research.
The Captain and crew aboard the Steve Irwin, yes the boat is named after the famous wildlife host and his wife and family have given the Sea Shephard their blessing.Â They brave the harsh ocean waters near Antarctica to scout and locate Japanese ships and convince them to abandon their hunting of whales.Â These talks are not peaceful by any means and the Sea Shepards resort to hit and run guerrilla tactics using stink bombs, and other devices that cause havoc to the Fishing vessels.
Some would call the group eco terrorists or nuts for directly going and risking open hostilities with another nation’s vessels.Â The fact is that they only patrol protected “No Whaling” area’s and they are actually engaging in a public service to protect the whales from being hunted and killed.Â This in my opinion is no different than park rangers partrolling the protected preservation area’s in Africa and trying to deter and scare off elephant poachers except in this case these people volunteer and are not paid by any government agency.
The show has a “Deadliest Catch” feel a little bit as far as the live camera’s on deck and interviewing the crews, catching mishaps…etc.Â But it most definitely is not about making profit, it is about risking your life for a cause you believe in.Â Many of these crew members know they are risking their lives to save the life of a whale.Â In the first episode you even see the Japanese vessels threaten and finally open fire on the Steve Irwin and the Captain is injured.
The Steve Irwin has two raft type vehicles that it launches to pester and slow down the fishing vessels so the larger craft can catch up and the crew can throw their make-shaft stink bombs at the whaling vessels.Â They have a small helicopter on board that is used to scout the area and find the offensive craft as well.
The pilot episode only aired last Friday on Animal Planet and was pretty engaging, I am definitely hooked to see what happens with this show and where it goes.Â I had no idea that there was this kind of eco piracy and actually that Japanese poachers were still hunting and killing whales by the hundreds in protected waters.
Personally I think whaling should be banned entirely and without exception, these creatures much like dolphins are proven to be the smartest creatures on the planet next to human beings and killing them is unacceptable.Â It is one thing to raise animals in captivity that are bred for food versus hunting and killing animals in the wild where you risk bringing them to extinction.
Everyone should check out this show Whale Wars on Animal Planet and get involved in learning about what is going on every day regarding whaling and the people who try and do something about it.