Twenty-seven illegally-caught dolphins in the Solomon Islands have been set free – the result of a joint effort between Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources Compliance Officers and the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force. According to a report by
A few days earlier, a similar raid was conducted at Kolombangara Island in the Western Province and a number of dolphins were released back into the open ocean.
Dolphin Project applauds the local authorities as well as the Ministry of Fisheries for enforcing the Fisheries Management Act. Our team in the Solomon’s will continue to work to permanently end the export and slaughter of dolphins. We are making incredible progress.” ~ Lincoln O’Barry
Despite joining CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) in 2007, the Solomon Islands announced that it would sanction the unsustainable capture and export of 100 dolphins per year. Several dolphin capture outfits have subsequently sprung up and more exports are taking place. Both the Solomon Islands and Taiji – known for slaughtering dolphins via drive fisheries – have been targeted by the captive marine mammal industry. The ‘Animal Planet’s’ Blood Dolphin$ detailed in depth how Solomon Island dolphins were exploited for profit.
Dolphin Project has maintained a presence in the Solomon Islands with a recent emphasis on Fanalei Island for several years. We’re using grassroots community development to transition island life away from hunting dolphin for teeth, meat, and cash. Through providing self-sufficient programs, the Dolphin Project is offering Fanalei a chance to seek alternatives to profiting off dolphin.
We’re already seeing change on Fanalei as perceptions evolve. The number of dolphins killed has dropped from 800 animals yearly, to less than fifty. Lead hunters are starting to recognize the dolphins as sentient beings while science is helping them to learn about the complexities of dolphin brains. As a result, some hunters are now open to altering cultural tradition and even ceasing the hunt altogether.
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