The Nancy Burnet helicopter gives us an advantage, but only when it can fly. Weather conditions prevent us from flying for over 50 percent of the time. All and all, it is a formidable challenge, but so far this season has been an incredible success.
After a month in pursuit of the whaling fleet, we have kept the factory ship on the run for over 4,000 miles. Most importantly we have kept two of three harpoon vessels out of whaling operations for 30 days. The third whaling vessel has been kept out of whaling operations for at least 50 percent of these 30 days while running, and working without its assigned spotting vessels, going back and forth to relieve each other, wasting hundreds of miles every time.
We estimate we have cut operations for this month by 75 percent, and possibly more. We have two more months to go.
With the Gojira back in action, the scouting for the Nisshin Maru will continue and once re-located, the Bob Barker will move to approach it. Meanwhile, the Steve Irwin will refuel and return with fresh supplies for all three vessels, and by mid February, all three Sea Shepherd ships will be on the chase until the end of the whaling season.
If we had just one more ship down here, the third harpoon vessel could be kept entirely out of action. But we have to deal with the situation and the resources we do have, and we are doing that to the best of our ability.
To escape from us, the Nisshin Maru made some desperate and dangerous movements through thick ice. We could not follow it without sustaining serious damage to our ship, and so we continue to run after them, biting at their heels, moving them along, knowing they are looking over their shoulders constantly to see if a black ship is bearing down on them.
The hunters have become the hunted, and our hunt for these whale killers will continue until the poachers point their bows north to Japan and return with their meager, gory, and unprofitable cargo.