Japan’s Taiji Dolphin Killing Methods Deemed Inhumane

A recent issue of the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science contains the findings of a clinical veterinary and behavioral analysis of the killing methods being used in the notorious Taiji dolphin drive hunts based on bystander video footage from 2011, accessible at http://youtube/dzOw5IBmqWk (WARNING: footage is graphic). The analysis was performed in response to claims by the Taiji Fishing Cooperative that this “new” killing method—which involves the repeated insertion of a metal rod into the blowhole of captured dolphins, followed by plugging of the wound to prevent blood loss into the water—reduces time to death, compared to former methods.

The analysis showed this not to be the case, and in fact found that the damage to the vertebral blood vessels from insertion of the rod leads to significant hemorrhage, paralysis and eventual death through trauma and gradual blood loss. The scientists conclude that this killing method would not be tolerated or permitted in any regulated slaughterhouse process in the developed world.

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