The Chase Continues - Day FourCommentary by Captain Paul Watson
On Board the Sea Shepherd ship Steve Irwin
"Crikey, danger, danger, you whalers, the Shepherds are coming"
- What Steve would say if he were with us
We've been on the tail of the Japanese whaling fleet for 96 hours since finding them near the Shackleton Glacier on the Queen Mary Coast of Wilkes Land.
As we pursue the Japanese whalers, the Japanese Coast Guard on the Fukuyoshi Maru No. 68 continues to tail our ship the Steve Irwin.
The weather has broken temporarily and treated us to calm seas and sunny skies but another storm is sneaking up on our stern with the promise of all hell breaking loose within the next day.
The Japanese whalers have turned South heading towards Vincennes Bay between the Budd Coast and Knox Coast of Wilkes Land.
At noon on February 26th they were at 65 Degrees 10 Minutes South and 109 Degrees 25 Minutes East. They are moving into an area where they can kill whales and if they stop to harpoon whales we will be on them.
We imagine that the whalers on the Yushin Maru No. 2 have been tearing their ship apart looking for our tracking devices. They won't find them, and the batteries are good for over a year. We may even be able to use the devices next year if the Japanese fleet returns.
A couple of reporters have asked why we would admit to planting tracking devices on the ships. The answer to that is we want the Japanese whalers to know that we know where they are. We want them to know we are on their tail constantly. We want them looking over their shoulders constantly scanning the horizon for the black ship that will intervene against their poaching activities.
The Steve Irwin is coming and if Steve were with us he would be saying, "Danger, danger, crikey you whalers, these Shepherds are dangerous, because like the rest of Australia they are very filthy with what you're doing."
Since finding the whalers, the Japanese ships fled from the Australian Antarctic Territorial waters for two days and are now returning again. They have zig-zagged for over 800 miles to get to a point only 300 miles from where they were when we found them. Most importantly they have not killed any whales.
We saw a small pod of Humpbacks today as we passed them by.
Someday, because of our efforts today these magnificent creatures will be able to swim unmolested and at peace in these wondrous waters and the only harpoons to be found will be found in nautical museums or in the wax museums of horrors.
Whales weep not for the Steve Irwin is coming!