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Back To Work Again…

Back To Work Again…

Hi Everyone, Well, here we are with one week of 2012 behind us and the...
Orcas versus humpbacks

Orcas versus humpbacks

Occasionally accounts come our way of observations on whales that are unusual and very interesting....
New Year Dolphin Slaughter Begins In Taiji

New Year Dolphin Slaughter Begins In Taiji

Although the fishermen in Taiji took a two week break from hunting and killing dolphins...
Dolphin Consumption On Rise In Poorer Nations

Dolphin Consumption On Rise In Poorer Nations

Dolphin for dinner is becoming more common as people in poorer nations struggle to put...
Whaling Vs. Whale Watching

Whaling Vs. Whale Watching

Iceland Review has conducted interviews with Konrád Eggertsson, a whaler, and Hördur Sigurbjarnarson, running an...
Orcafilm: Das Ende Der Freiheit

Orcafilm: Das Ende Der Freiheit

<br /><br /><br />Was ist dein Weihnachstwunsch für Wale und Delfine? Schreib uns eine Mail...
Sperm Whale Jaw For Sale

Sperm Whale Jaw For Sale

Further to the removal of the jaw and teeth from the body of a sperm...
Kinofilm: Mein Freund Der Delfin

Kinofilm: Mein Freund Der Delfin

Wer hat diesen Film schon gesehen? Es geht um einen Delfin mit dem Namen „Winter“,...

Turning the tide in St Vincent and the Grenadines

 

St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) is a beautiful island nation in the Eastern Caribbean.  Humpback whaling began on Bequia, its second largest island, in 1875 when William Wallace, a Scottish settler, returned to the island after working on an American whaling vessel. He established a whaling company and passed on techniques for hunting both humpback and sperm whales to his crew, later partnering with French settler, Joseph Ollivierre, who also established a whaling station on the island.

SVG joined the International Whaling Commission (IWC) in 1981 and since then, has been awarded a “subsistence quota” for humpback whales, despite the fact that the nation fails to meet the criteria for so-called Aboriginal Subsistence Whaling (ASW).  In this context, a 50-foot female humpback whale was caught off Bequia last week.

Thankfully, the more positive news is that, since the early 1990s, commercial trips to view marine wildlife, have been operating and are steadily increasing in popularity. In recent years, a whale watch training programme has been developed with the help of international experts, in response to a request from two local organisations, the SVG National Trust and the SVG Preservation Fund.

Several species of whale and dolphin are found in the waters of SVG: some are present year-round, including spinner dolphin, pantropical spotted dolphin, bottlenose dolphin, short-finned pilot whale and orca (killer whale); whilst sperm whales and humpback whales are seasonal visitors.

Importantly, these trips have a broad focus and so passengers are encouraged to spot local birdlife as well as keeping a look-out for whales and dolphins.  For example, the ferry crossing from Kingstown (the capital) to Port Elizabeth offers a great chance to watch dolphins; whilst back ashore, visitors can experience the island’s rich history and visit local museums and the old whaling factory.

In January this year, Prime Minister Gonsalves commented: “A lot of our young folk are interested not so much in the actual traditional whaling, but in whale watching, which is a legitimate activity.” He made other encouraging noises in favour of whale watching, which indicate government support for futher developing whale watching in SVG, a move which will enormously benefit local communities as well as the whales.