News and blogs

News

Plans for new plastic 'eating' ship are revealed

Design plans for a new eco-yacht that collects plastic from the ocean and recycles it into fuel have been unveiled in Southampton.

The £40million 'Ocean Saviour' has been specially designed to scoop up five tonnes of plastic pollution each day, which is then recycled into fuel that will power the vessel itself.

Oldest dolphin held captive dies after spending 47 years in a tank

Moby, the oldest dolphin held in captivity died today at the Nuremberg Zoo, Germany.

Moby, who was thought to be around 58 years old, had been held in captivity since 1971. The exact cause of death is not known at present but further details may be released by the zoo following investigations.

Throughout much of his life, Moby could be seen swimming in the same pattern around his tank, a sign of stereotypic behaviour often seen in intelligent, wide-ranging marine mammals like dolphins when they are held in captivity for long periods.

Japan’s attempts to remove the international ban on commercial whale hunting defeated

Japan’s hopes of overturning the 32-year-old ban on commercial whale hunting by changing current international regulations have been defeated following a vote at the International Whaling Commission (the body that regulates whale hunting) in Brazil today.

Japan’s proposal had been seen as one of the most dangerous threats to the ban on whaling and the future of whales for many years, bringing back large scale whaling and ending one of the biggest successes in conservation history. 

Proposal to create a whale sanctuary in the South Atlantic is defeated at whaling meeting

A proposal to establish a South Atlantic Whale Sanctuary (SAWS) has failed to be ratified at International Whaling Commission (IWC – the body that regulates whale hunting), which is  meeting in Brazil this week.

The sanctuary would prevent whale hunting and encourage research and economic opportunities for local communities in the South Atlantic, but it failed to pass with a 61% majority voting against it, and despite the IWC’s own Scientific Committee already giving the plan its backing.

WDC joins new project helping to prevent whale and dolphin entanglement in fishing gear

WDC has joined up with other organisations to help with a new research project looking into the problem of marine mammal entanglement in fishing gear in Scottish waters, which has just been launched.

The first of its kind in Europe, the Scottish Entanglement Alliance (SEA) brings together fishing industry representatives, researchers and conservation and welfare charities to assess the scale and impact of the issue.

Blogs

Young Southern Resident orca Scarlet (J50) missing, presumed dead

I’m a huge sucker for an underdog.  Any kind of story with the downtrodden little guy, the scrappy long shot – I’m in and I root for them with my whole heart.  I just really like to see a happy ending, and things turn around just when you thought they couldn’t get any worse.  Sadly, the story of Scarlet (J50), is an underdog tale that doesn’t end happily, and this is not a movie we can turn aw

A peek behind the scenes of whale and dolphin conservation

Fighting for whale and dolphin protection is rarely as glamorous as it might sound. Much of it takes place in long meetings, where evidence is presented and decisions are made. Some of the most important events in a whale conservationist’s calendar are the various meetings of the International Whaling Commission, or IWC, the body that regulates whaling.

50 shades of grey – watching orcas in Scotland

Every year, people gather on cliff tops in the north of Scotland to watch out for orcas, some of whom come down from their winter herring-hunting grounds in Iceland on the look out for seals in the early Scottish summer. Run by the Sea Watch Foundation and supported by WDC, we call this event Orca Watch.