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Nov 1, 2007

Hi all –

There has been so much happening outdoors that time to write the blogalong has been limited – the weather this spring has been more like summer, with environmental events occurring over a month early, like the annual bark drop of Spotted Gum is 6 weeks early.

 

The above butterfly, Vanessa itea, the yellow admiral, is a rare sight at Wadalba, but is common this season, as is the Bogong Moth.

More about the butterflies of Wadalba in the Wadalba Reports at http://www.whalecall.org/index.php?page=improving.htm


This blogalong gets back to an issue I am committed about – Whaling.

The Japanese Whaling Fleet is about to set sail for the Australian Southern Ocean Sanctuary to kill 50 Humpback Whales.

It is highly likely that the Humpbacks they will kill are from the East Coast Humpback population that has been instrumental in creating a huge industry, not in killing, but in watching.

 

 
Since the late 1980’s the populations of Humpback Whales around the Australian Coast have increased in numbers due to a total ban on killing this species.

Hundreds of thousands of people, if not millions, have now had the unique opportunity to view a Humpback, in close proximity, in the ocean on the East Coast of Australia.

I.F.A.W. in conjunction with The Oceania Project and Surfers for Cetaceans now have 47 local coastal councils supporting their Humpback Icon Project, giving community ownership to 47 adopted Humpback Whales, Australian Whales.

On Saturday 3rd November is Fight for Fifty Day , and to mark this, many towns and communities involved in the Humpback Icon Project will take action and protest against scientific and commercial Whaling, calling for further action by the Australian Government to save our Whales.

 

 
Soldiers Beach carpark circa mid sixties -

Whale Call has organized an action at Soldiers Beach to protest the possible wanton death of Australian Humpback Whales, Fin Whales, Minke Whales, in fact all Whales, by the Japanese Government supported illegal action in Australian Ocean Sanctuaries, and all ocean waters.

Tonga, one of the countries that supported the Japanese at the last I.W.C. meeting in Alaska, has had a bumper season for Humpback Whales. The Whale Watching Industry in Tonga has actually placed a value to each Humpback in terms of dollars bought into the Tongan economy due directly to Whale Watching.

One million dollars each –

Yet some of the island chiefs are pushing for Whaling to boost their economy – it kind of doesn’t make sense considering Whale meat is too toxic to eat, has no export opportunity, and has no financial market.

The claims of ‘tradition’ need to be readdressed by these chiefs – in Australia 200 years ago it was a ‘tradition’ to eat koala – fortunately for the koala, that ‘tradition’ has now been supplanted by a more sensible tradition – that to save the few koalas we have left in the wild.

This ethic needs to be transplanted into the minds of all that call for ‘traditional’ Whaling, and for that matter, into the minds of all who kill the many oceanic species in decline, in the name of either ‘tradition’ or sport.

 
If you are a regular blogalong reader, you may remember that last time Whale Call went out Whale Watching on the Imagine at Nelson Bay, we saw no Whales – it was a great day with sightings of dolphins and many pelagic birds – so they gave us a half price ticket for next time – well it took some time to get up there again, but Tony, our media man, and myself took time out from daily life in Wyong, and drove to Nelson Bay, about an hour and a half north, to catch up with the crew of Imagine and go looking for Whales -

 

 
Well what a day – Ray Alley, the world famous Whale photographer was on board – as it was getting late in the season, we were not sure if we would find a whale – but after about ¾ hour cruising looking for the telltale  blow of a surfacing Whale, we saw one – further out to sea – a mother and calf making their way back to feeding grounds in the Antarctic – they were staying down for a long time, and we lost them – but on the way back, a pair of adults and a calf were found frolicking not far off shore

Above is the calf having a good look at us --

 

 
This calf was really active with many tail displays and a lot of slapping, diving in and about the two adults – it felt strange this trip, knowing that these majestic mammals are heading to harpoon land, and may not make it back next season.

What is being done by the Australian Government to stop this travesty?

The current government is saying it should not happen, but will not take any action to protect them in Australian Waters, but there is an election coming up – the current opposition has stated that they will send in warships, but haven’t said what they will do with those warships – but by the time this election is over, if the opposition wins, it will already be too late to stop the Japanese this season.

 

 
A tail slap next to one of the adults brings this blogalong to a close.

The Whaling issue is one that just won’t go away – it is up to us, humans with compassion, to ensure this murderous madness ceases for all time

We cannot just leave it up to Sea Shepherd to do our work for us – get active, write, pick up the phone and call your local politicians and demand action

Visibility: Everyone
Posted: Thursday November 1, 2007, 3:55 am
Tags: whales [add/edit tags]

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Gayle M. (444)
Thursday November 1, 2007, 4:18 am
Thank you for all you do for the Whales & land down under by bringing it so graphically to those of us who have never been there physically. It makes me, purrsonally, revitalized in helpiing the Whale Call group!! Give Tony a thanks too :)

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Boris Branwhite
male, age 67, single
All, ALL, Australia
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