Sea ShepherdSEA SHEPHERD'S COVE GUARDIANS
Taiji's Cetacean Kill

Taiji's Cetacean Kill

The Town of Taiji

Cetacean kill in the Taiji coveGeographically, Taiji is located in south-eastern Japan within Wakayama Prefecture. Taiji is renowned for its scenic beauty and is a popular holiday destination in the summer. However, this picturesque town conceals a dark secret – the capture and killing of entire pods of dolphins and Pilot whales.

Cultural Tradition?

Evidence shows that whale and dolphin hunting has occurred in this part of Japan for centuries. However the dolphin drive hunts as it exists today only began in the late 1960s, just as the dolphinarium industry was beginning to boom around the world.

The fact that a practice has been carried out for many years does not make it right. The arguments of ‘culture’ and ‘tradition’ are no excuse for continuing a cruel hunt which illegal in most other countries around the world. Most countries that were once major whaling nations have since ended the practice. Iceland, Norway, the Danish Faroe Islands, and Japan continue to conduct large-scale commercial cetacean hunts. 

Sea Shepherd is neither anti-Japanese nor opposed to any nation or group of people.  We are against the killing of cetaceans, no matter the nationality of the hunters.

Taiji Cetacean killThe Japanese Fisheries Agency authorises as many as 16,000 dolphins, whales and porpoises can be killed or captured in Japanese waters each year.

Taiji accounts for over 1,800 of the 16,000 cetaceans killed in Japan annually (depending on the exact quotas which are set annually). The annual dolphin drive-hunt season runs for six months, beginning on September 1 and typically running until early March of the following year. Whaling of larger cetaceans in coastal waters is then undertaken for the remaining six months of the year.

Every year the Taiji dolphin hunters request a catch limit they self-allocate with no scientific advice or consideration for sustainability Their annual quota is then confirmed and a permit is then issued by the office of the Governor of Wakayama Prefecture. 

Most of the dolphins and small whales captured in the Taiji dolphin drive hunts are killed and the meat is sold for human consumption. The number of dolphins captured for the captive industry has risen substantially in recent years due to the growing international demand from dolphinariums and marine entertainment parks. As the demand for dolphin and whale meat drops, it is the highly profitable captive dolphin industry that sustains the Taiji hunt.

Respected scientists from around the world have repeatedly warned of the high levels of heavy metals and other industry derived contaminants bio-accumulated in cetacean meat from our polluted oceans, yet many residents in Taiji and nearby coastal communities eat the dolphin meat.

Taiji is a very small town and there are only around 28 people involved in Taiji’s dolphin hunts. Though there are many supporters of the drive hunts, there are also many people in Japan who oppose them but most of Japan’s population are totally unaware of what is happening in the Cove at Taiji. 

Sea Shepherd is committed to documenting and reporting on the activities of Taiji’s infamous dolphin killing cove as well as shining a spotlight on the international captive trade that drives the hunts to apply worldwide pressure upon Japan to shut this atrocity down.

Share This

Sea Shepherd's Operation Infinite Patience: The Cove Guardians expose Taiji
Sea Shepherd's Operation Infinite Patience: The Cove Guardians expose Taiji
Melissa Sehgal and her Sea Shepherd Cove Guardian team highlight the daily atrocities that occur against much beloved, intelligent and social dolphins in Taiji, Japan for six months of each year.
Shannen Doherty reacts to dolphin slaughter in Taiji
Shannen Doherty reacts to dolphin slaughter in Taiji
September 20, 2014 - Taiji, Japan - Actress Shannen Doherty joins Sea Shepherd's Cove Guardians at Taiji, Japan's infamous cove to bear witness to their brutal annual dolphin drive hunts. In this clip, she describes her reaction to seeing a dolphin drive and slaughter.
From the Cove to Captivity Contest Winner - AnaGirlEmpath
From the Cove to Captivity Contest Winner - AnaGirlEmpath
http://www.seashepherd.org/news-and-media/2014/03/18/sea-shepherd-announces-winners-of-from-the-cove-to-captivity-video-contest-1564
From the Cove to Captivity Contest Runner Up - RenaudK
From the Cove to Captivity Contest Runner Up - RenaudK
http://www.seashepherd.org/news-and-media/2014/03/18/sea-shepherd-announces-winners-of-from-the-cove-to-captivity-video-contest-1564
From the Cove to Captivity Contest - Megan Rose Taylor
From the Cove to Captivity Contest - Megan Rose Taylor
I am currently studying Animal Management at college and have always been passionate about animal welfare. When I learnt what was happening in Taiji I was devastated and for a while felt ashamed to belong to the human race. That is until I discovered Sea Shepherd and the Cove Guardians who made me f...
If dolphins could fly, they'd leave this place
If dolphins could fly, they'd leave this place
Operation Infinite Patience continues to document the captive dolphin trade in Taiji, Japan. This update covers the events shortly before January 6th, 2012, and shows some of the security measures being taken to hide the shameful source of the global trade of wild dolphins and the connection with th...
Captain Paul Watson on the Cove Guardian Campaign
Captain Paul Watson on the Cove Guardian Campaign
Captain Paul Watson discusses Sea Shepherd's role in Taiji for Operation Infinite Patience and shares what you can do to help. Follow us on Twitter @SeaShepherd_USA and @CoveGuardians for instant updates from The Cove. #Tweet4Taiji Visit our Cove Guardians page at www.seashepherd.org/cove-guardian...
The Economics of Sustained Resistance
The Economics of Sustained Resistance
The cost of security surrounding Taiji's dolphin slaughter mounts as Operation Infinite Patience builds momentum. Here is a clear explanationof our objectives and how we will meet them.
Following the Trail of Blood
Following the Trail of Blood
Taiji, Japan - Sea Shepherd documents the numbersof dolphins captured, killed, and shipped to marine parks with thehelp and support of dozens of volunteer Cove Guardians.
Cove Guardian Spotlight - Troy
Cove Guardian Spotlight - Troy
Taiji, Japan - We shine the spotlight on Troy Coyle, a volunteer Cove Guardian from NSW, Australia.
From the Cove to Captivity Video Contest (English)
From the Cove to Captivity Video Contest (English)
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is proud to announce its "From the Cove to Captivity" Video Contest! This is your chance to do your part to defend the dolphins and small whales of Taiji. Learn more at http://www.seashepherd.org/cove-guardians/video-contest.html
From the Cove to Captivity Video Contest (Japanese)
From the Cove to Captivity Video Contest (Japanese)
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is proud to announce its "From the Cove to Captivity" Video Contest! This is your chance to do your part to defend the dolphins and small whales of Taiji. Learn more at http://www.seashepherd.org/cove-guardians/video-contest.html
I am a Cove Guardian
I am a Cove Guardian
Taiji (太地町) Japan - Join the Cove Guardians from whereever you are. Take action to help stop the slaughter of innocent dolphins and whales. 日本語字幕 click [CC]
Taiji, Japan - Pilot whale tethered and drowned
Taiji, Japan - Pilot whale tethered and drowned
A wounded pilot whale, visibly bleeding and barely able to stay above the surface of the water, is tethered and drowned in the cove by Taiji's killers, after briefly escaping from under the tarps where its pod is being slaughtered.
From Taiji to Tanks: A Look at the Barren Lives of Captive Dolphins
From Taiji to Tanks: A Look at the Barren Lives of Captive Dolphins
In November 2015, Sea Shepherd's Cove Guardians observed the captive cetaceans at Japan's Adventure World.Though this marine park has dolphins from Taiji, the suffering behind cetacean captivity looks much the same around the world. To learn how you can support Operation Henkaku and help us break t...
Operation Henkaku 2015 Dolphin Defense Campaign
Operation Henkaku 2015 Dolphin Defense Campaign
Sea Shepherd's Cove Guardians are gearing up for the sixth season of our Taiji Dolphin Defense Campaign. As we return to the cove to expose the brutal capture and slaughter of dolphins and small whales, stand with us! The dolphins need you! To volunteer as a Cove Guardian, please email [email protected]..
Taiji: Hell on Earth for Dolphins
Taiji: Hell on Earth for Dolphins
New video with drone footage from Sea Shepherd's Cove Guardians Operation Infinite Patience 2016/17 Campaign.
Taiji, Japan - Dolphins for Cash
Taiji, Japan - Dolphins for Cash
Taiji, Japan. Where dolphins are seen as commodities, dead or alive. The hunting is fueled not by tradition or by a need for food, but by out-and-out greed. A lust for money. Money that is tainted by the blood of the slaughtered dolphins and the misery of those families torn apart. Go to http://www....