We never forget you

IKAN's Message for a website "sha-chi.jp"

which was established to remember the Taiji5 by Japanese citizens


Every year, when I feel the warm sunlight briefly on my skin during a chilly windy day, I remember about the incident at the beach that took place ten years ago.

What my eye were watching seemed too surreal like an excerpt from a movie, but the sound of the baby orca crying struck me as a painful reality, and I was helpless.

"I will return you to the sea..."

Only after four months I made the promise, the little baby orca quietly passed away in an aquarium tank. At the same time, the baby orca's heart-breaking calls touched many people around the globe, and demonstrated how wrong the capture was, far more effectively than any words combined.

When you hear the recording of the baby orca (audible at this website), I am sure you will empathize with our sincere wish that no such human action should happen ever again.

Although this capture took place under the title of "academic research," the orca trade involved transaction of more than hundred million yen, and a local paper reported that the orcas were planned to be sold to a different body. Also, despite the noble tile, some orcas were used for performances, and some loaned to different aquariums for breeding purposes. The "academic research' was clearly just a front, and the industry and even the government knew this.

You might think sensible people would never repeat this, but it is not that easy in a world where a bogus project tile gets you lots of money. If it worked once, people would try to do it again and again. For those greedy handfuls of people, orcas – something we want to share with our future generations - are being faced with the threat of capture once again. A decade after the initial capture, the period that perhaps is thought as "sufficient cooling-off period," some people are planning to repeat the same project.

What can stop this wrong and harmful project is the power in each of you. Small voices accumulate to become one powerful influence. Please, help us with halting the capture. I sincerely ask for your support and thank you from the bottom of my heart.

I will never forget the orcas captured in Taiji on February 7th.

Nanami Kurasawa
Secretary General
Iruka & Kujira (Dolphin & Whale) Action Network