Stop the Bloody Whale Slaughter on the Faroe Islands

On a group of islands just north of Europe, the traditional bloody whale and dolphin slaughter takes place every year. The Faroe Islands are a part of Denmark, where whaling is banned, but they have laws that are independent of Denmark's laws, so they are allowed to continue with this mass execution. Year after year, thousands of pilot whales, beaked whales and dolphins are chased into the bay by boats, where they are slaughtered.

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Whale tourists need realistic expectations

Tourists who visit Tonga's northern Vava'u island to swim with whales need to have realistic expectations about what will happen.

That's according to underwater photographer Tony Wu, who visits the island regularly to document the way humpback whales use the area to breed.

He says he managed to count 48 whale calves born in Port of Refuge harbour this last season, which is a lot.

But Mr Wu says the Tongan whale watching industry needs to make sure not to promise tourists that the whales will come close to them or touch them.

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Court rejects efforts to strip beluga whale protections

A federal judge this week rejected an attempt by Alaska to strip Cook Inlet beluga whales of Endangered Species Act protections. Last spring, the National Marine Fisheries Service designated critical habitat for the whales despite state’s lawsuit.

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End comes closer for whaling ban

The opponents of whaling fear a return to commercial hunting is virtually inevitable within the next few years.

Conservation groups at the annual meeting of the International Whaling Commission believe the 1986 whaling moratorium cannot last much longer.

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PETA lawsuit alleges SeaWorld enslaves killer whales

Can killer whales sue SeaWorld for enslavement?

A lawsuit filed Wednesday by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and other "next friends" of five SeaWorld killer whales takes that novel legal approach.

The 20-page complaint asks the U.S. District Court in Southern California to declare that the five whales -- Tilikum, Katina, Corky, Kasatka, and Ulises -- are being held in slavery or involuntary servitude in violation of the 13th Amendment.

A PETA statement said the lawsuit is the first of its kind in contending that constitutional protections against slavery are not limited to humans.

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The year 2014 was an excellent one for marine wildlife viewing, and 2015 is apparently starting off using a bang. Visitors and residents happen to be seeing gray whales from coast daily.

Gray whales really are a mottled grey and white, generally with spots and noticeable scars of barnacles. Gray whales do not have a dorsal fin that is prominent, but instead have a knobby hump along the spinal column, which can be seen when they dive and surface.

Gray whales are baleen whales, meaning as human fingernails, the mouth is lined with layers of feel, exactly the same makeup and keratin plates instead of teeth. They’ve nose and a narrow head, and the upper jaw is somewhat longer than the lower. As its huge mouth shuts, mud and the water spill out, while the food is trapped on the baleen plates. A final swipe of the baleen using a 100-pound tongue as well as a swallow finish the meal.


Conservation efforts have resulted in a species recoil to about 20,000. although the whales were once considered extinct While a smaller population migrates across the shore of eastern Asia many gray whales travel along the West Coast of North America.

All the North American whales spend the summer feeding in the Chukchi and Bering Seas, they move around extensively and could be viewed from Alaska to California, although. Subsequently, they turn around and head north again through May.  There will be media coverage (hopefully) on local news and TV stations, to access online content though from outside the US you’ll need something like a VPN or this Smart DNS solution demonstrated here.

Annually, researchers from the Southwest Fisheries Science Center of NOAA spend March through May at the Piedras Blancas Light Station, watching the northward gray whale migration. In 2014, 431 gray whale calves were counted by researchers.

“That is a very large amount.”

Their mothers s as well as those calves are observable from coast as they finish the last leg of the 3,000-mile southbound journey.

Calm seas and clear skies result in excellent whale watching states. Search for strikes about two thirds of the way to the horizon. Most whales are going in groups that are free, thus try to find others in case you see one setback. The whales are travelling, and you might be in a position to tell they’re headed, when you see to get a brief while. Most are going now, but in two or a month, we ought to have the ability to see them heading north. Those people who live on the shore are lucky to really have a front row seat at this annual event that is amazing. That is cause for celebration!

Additional Information.

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iPad 2 Jailbreak - Whale Watching GuideIf you decide to take your iPad 2 at with you while whale watching you may need to use the iPad 2 jailbreak software to unlock the hidden features for video recording.  The iPad 2 is one of the most interesting gadgets of 2011 but has it’s limitations without unlocking it first.

You may not know everything that it can do though. You probably know that it can do many of the same things that your computer can do, even if it is a scaled down version of the Apple computer.  The great news is that there’s actually an app for whale watching.  All you need is a unlocked iPad which is capable of establishing an iPad VPN connection,  to do the video and you’re good to go.

One thing you need to be careful of if you decide to jailbreak your iPad 2 is that if Apple finds out about the process, they can void your warranty and you also run the risk of what’s commonly called bricking. It’s called bricking because the iPad basically is as useful as a brick now since it doesn’t work.  There are ways to unbrick the iPad, but chances are you will be charged a ridiculous price to do so.

Jailbreaking an iPad is not always necessary. A tablet that works with a mobile service requires this. A tablet with wifi does not.  The jailbreaking process works the same way it does for a cell phone. When you jailbreak the unit you can use the iPad on any cellular network. The major problem with jailbreaking an iPad or iPhone is that it may require you to alter the hardware to switch carriers.  If that’s the case you may require a professional with the right equipment to perform the procedure.

Once you’ve taken care of jailbreaking your iPad 2 it’s time to enjoy the whales.  You’ve got your new whale watching app, full video features, and a cheaper internet carrier to take advantage of.  Now start videoing these beautiful creatures and load them up online and share it with the world.  Just be careful not to drop it in the water.

Further Reading

BBC iPlayer USA

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During 2008 and 2009 I was lucky enough to do some extensive solo travelling throughout the world and one of my favourite destinations was the last country I visited; New Zealand.  The main reason for this was the fact that on Sunday 15th February 2009 I got to go Sperm Whale watching in Kaikoura, a small town on the East coast of New Zealands South Island, famous for whale, dolphin, seal and bird watching.  I was told by the boats whale guide that I could expect to see 2 or 3 Sperm whales on our short trip and I was hugely excited.  Well, the chap was wrong, in total I saw 9 sperm whales flipping their huge tail in the air and diving below the surface to continue feeding.  We saw plenty of other whales that day blowing water up through their blow holes so even the guide was hugely excited.  He believed their was over 20 around us in the water which was an absolutely huge number.  I was so excited and I felt so honoured that I had managed to see such a magnificent beast on that day and it is an I will hold dear till the day I die.

I have always been a big animal lover and seeing them in their natural habit is such a great feeling.  On the way back to the harbour, I was reflecting about what I had seen and suddenly really started to miss my own families pet cat!  I could just imagine her running up and down her cat furniture getting all excited and wanting to play. She is a typical playful, pouncing cat but even though she is a domestic cat and I will never get to see her in her natural environment I am really pleased that she is so clearly very happy and stimulated.  As you can tell, the sight of watching such a great beast clearly had quite an emotional effect on me as I am quite a soppy chap!  The next plan I have is Safari in Africa to see some really big cats – I wonder if I will thinking about my little cat then as well?

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This summer my wife and I went to Victoria British Columbia and one of the things she wanted to do was to go whale watching. I was hesitant because I didn’t want to pay a lot of money and end up seeing nothing, which is possible when you set out to find whales. However, my fear was unfounded as we had a great time and saw lots of whales.

We decided to use the company called Five Star Whales because they had boats where you could sit inside and be shielded from the wind. This turned out to be a good choice as it was a 1 hour high speed ride to and from the whales which would have been freezing cold had we chosen another company with smaller boats where you sit lower and are exposed.

The journey to the whale area was comfortable and the two guides were there to give you all the information you needed. If you are looking for summer good jobs for 18 year olds or college students in Victoria and you have marine wildlife training or knowledge, this type of work could be great if you can get it. It looks fun and it surely is exciting when you get to the whale area.

After the approximate 1 hour ride our boat slowed down to a crawl for the next hour and everyone rushed outside. There were over 30 other boats in the area and all of them were moving slowly with crowds of people on them.

The whales were luckily there that day and the guide told us there were over 50 of them comprising three different families. We watch as they surfaced quickly and went back under. None of them ever jumped fully out of the water but it was still amazing to be that close to real wild whales. We even saw a baby whale traveling on its mother’s back.

While we were in the whale area almost a full hour, it seemed much shorter. Before no time the boat sped up again and retraced its journey back home. It was a beautiful day and we were very fortunate that the weather and the whales all cooperated to make our experience one we will never forget. It was definitely worth the $100 per person we spent for the 3 hour ride.

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