10 thoughts on “Antarctic whale expedition

  1. U.S. study disputes increase in Antarctic minke whale population

    Feb 8 10:32 PM US/Eastern

    TOKYO, Feb. 9 (AP) – (Kyodo)—The population of Antarctic minke whales has not increased even after other larger whales in food competition were hunted, according to a recent study by U.S. researchers, countering arguments Japan cites as a reason for conducting what it calls research whaling.

    With larger species of whales including blue whales being intensely hunted in the late 20th century, Japan’s Fisheries Agency and researchers have hypothesized that Antarctic minke whales may have increased as a result of lesser competition for krill that they feed on.

    But researchers at Oregon State University and Stanford University calculated that the population size in the early 20th century was roughly 670,000, a figure similar to or slightly larger than current estimates from surveys of sightings.

    They analyzed genetic diversity of minke whales by purchasing 52 meat samples in Japanese markets to project the population number, according to the study published in the journal Molecular Ecology, posted online in December.

    Scott Baker, a researcher at Oregon State University, who conducted the analysis, said the latest results indicated the hypothesis by some scientists that the population has increased by three-fold to eight- fold over the last century is wrong.

    The Japanese agency has said in promoting the lethal research there are calls for “thinning” the Antarctic minke whale population as there is a possibility that it is hindering the recovery of the blue whale population.


  2. Pressure builds on Japanese whaling

    New Zealand: The government has declared that it will join Australia in seeking international legal action against Japan over its annual whale hunt in the Antarctic if negotiations fail to produce a diplomatic solution.

    On Friday, Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said that his government would take Japan to international court over its “research” whaling programme that kills hundreds of whales a year if Tokyo did not agree to stop the hunt by November.

    New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully said on Monday that a diplomatic solution would be quicker than pursuing a case in the International Court of Justice at The Hague.



  3. Canberra calls for end to whaling

    Australia: The government has called for a gradual phasing out of whaling around the world in a proposal submitted to the International Whaling Commission, the environment minister said on Thursday.

    The proposal excludes aboriginal subsistence whaling – the hunting of whales by aboriginal groups who have a tradition of whaling.

    It also calls for whaling to be brought under the control of the commission so individual countries cannot unilaterally give permits for scientific whaling, a reference to Japan.



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  7. Pingback: Japanese whaling stops, temporarily | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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