New Caldonians tell Japanese whaling boats to go home

Angry New Caledonians are protesting against the presence of a Japanese whaling fleet in the port here, waving banners today saying whale killers, go home.

Environmental groups were to hold a demonstration at the harbour today against the presence of two whalers and a trawler that arrived on Monday morning at Noumea port.

The three boats left early today to continue their whale hunt, but the fleet's factory ship, the Nisshin Maru, damaged by fire on November 20, was due here for repairs later in the day.

Irrawaddy dolphins threatened by fish farms

A dolphin species found nowhere else in thePhilippines but in the Malampaya Sound in northern Palawan is in danger of extinction, according to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Marine Mammals.

The Irrawaddy dolphins are threatened by a proliferation of fish pens and an outbreak of 'red tide' algae, it said. Members of the task force found a small population of the dolphin in Malampaya last August during its first marine mammal survey.

Whales pass bright ideas" down the generations."

The remarkable ability of whales to communicate and socialize using long-distance sonar signalling has been passed down along with their genes and probably helped them survive and evolve, say researchers.

It is the first evidence that cultural behaviour is passed on through the generations in such a way that has not previously been found in any species other than humans, they reported in the journal Science. "I'm taking that evidence and applying it to a very new situation," said study author Hal Whitehead, a marine biologist at Dalhousie University.

New Dolphinarium opens in China

WDCS has received news that a new dolphinarium has now opened in China, the 'Beijing Dolphinarium'. Current reports state that the dolphinarium has 7 bottlenose dolphins, captured during a Japanese 'drive fishery' and 3 false killer whales, also captured in a drive fishery.

There is no response or interest from either the media or the Government to protest letters. WDCS sent a letter in May to the dolphinarium during its construction and has received no response either.

Japanese whaler going home under own steam

25-Nov-98 03:20 pm Port Moresby, Nov 25 - The crippled Japanese whaling ship which caught fire last week off the Queensland coast is now making its way back to Japan under its own power, according to a salvage operator.

The environmental group, Greenpeace, said on Monday that a salvage tug from Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, was expected to be sent to assist the Nisshin Maru, which caught fire last Thursday about 600 nautical miles east of Mackay on the central Queensland coast.

NZ orca dies after eating stingrays

Auckland, Nov 24 - A post-mortem carried out upon a dead female orca has given scientists vital information about the species. The orca's carcass was retrieved after being spotted at the weekend by a yacht crew sailing near the Noises Islands and was towed to shore by the Coastguard.

Japanese whaling fleet may return home after fire

Tokyo, Nov 24 Reuters - Japan's controversial Southern Ocean whaling fleet of five ships may return home early because of a fire that disabled the only ship able to process the meat, a spokesman for the owners, Kyodo Senpaku, said on Tuesday.

The spokesman said the owners were considering a number of options because of the accident but it appeared there would be no further killing of whales this season.

We will know these decisions for sure in a few days, he told Reuters.

WDCS co-hosts Pollution Conference

Following increasing concerns about the impacts of pollutants in the marine environment, WDCS and other wildlife groups in the UK yesterday co-hosted a conference in London to consider this matter. The conference was co-ordinated by Wildlife and Countryside Link (WCL) and brought together representatives from government, academia and industry, as well as conservation groups.

The meeting was well attended and generated considerable interest in the UK (and some international) media. The press release issued to coincide with the meeting follows:


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