Whale Meat Isn’t a Culinary Delicacy, It’s a Federal Offense
One California chef could face up to 67 years in prison for allegedly selling the endangered animal to patrons.
by Andri Antoniades
In 2010, the activist-filmmakers behind The Cove, the award-winning documentary exposing the brutal dolphin killings in Taiji, Japan, decided that even after worldwide acclaim and an Oscar win, they weren’t finished protecting the ocean’s endangered mammals. Setting up an undercover sting operation, they revealed that a popular Santa Monica sushi restaurant, named “The Hump,” was illegally selling endangered whale meat to diners.
Their efforts initially resulted in misdemeanor charges brought against The Hump’s parent company, Typhoon Restaurant Inc., as well two of its chefs, Kiyoshiro Yamamoto and Susumu Ueda. But The Los Angeles Times reports that following a further investigation, those charges were bumped up this week to nine felony counts of importing and selling endangered sei whale meat, a violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
As a result, chef Yamamoto in particular could face up to 67 years in prison…
(read more: TakePart.org) (photo: Michael Sweet/Getty)
SEND THEM TO PRISON.
Yep I remember this article, it was all over the news too. They sent in two undercover individuals to see if they were actually selling Whale meat, they asked about the subject and manager and chef both approached to ‘quietly’ discuss the matter. They were secretive about it, and only brought it out when service fell quiet. The customer had to pay up to $5,000 for a plate of Whale Sashimi. It was all captured on a small spy camera in in either’s clothes.
“Dylan Madisetti and Scar - the friendly (?) sperm whale living in the waters off the coast of the Commonwealth of Dominica. The photo was taken by Dylan’s father Arun, a marine biologist.”
Off the Coast of Somewhere by Timidemerald
“In the first stage the soft tissues of the carcass are removed by scavengers, such as sharks, lampreys, and dozens of other species of invertebrates and vertebrates, capable of removing up to 60 kg per day of soft tissues.”
Text is a slightly edited Google translation of the source.
Kingdom of Tonga, Ha’apai, Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) breaching
Minke Whale (by dogandwolf)
Photograph by Doug Perrine, EPOTY.org/Fame/Barcroft
Fish flee the gaping maw of a Bryde’s whale, which surprised U.S. photographerDoug Perrine, who was in the middle of photographing striped marlin lured by a bait ball of sardines. In an account released with the image, Perrine said he snapped the picture while also fleeing the whale.
Sleek and lean, Bryde’s whales use their meshlike mouth plates, called baleen, to filter food as they power through the sea.
Blue Whales Pirouette Before Engulfing Prey
by Tia Ghose
As if behemoth ballerinas, blue whales pirouette before lunging at their prey, a strategy that may help the giants ambush krill from below.
“This behavior probably improves the whales’ chances to engulf the most krill possible,” said study co-author Ari Friedlaender, a marine biologist at Duke University.
The new findings, detailed today (Nov. 27) in the journal Biology Letters, may shed light on how the enigmatic creatures hunt and devour their shrimplike prey. Because krill cluster in massive swarms, “they’re perfect food for something like a baleen whale that wants to engulf a big amount of something at one time,” Friedlaender told LiveScience.
But while the marine mammals’ diet is well-known, how they find their prey remains a mystery…
(read more: Live Science) (photo: Ari Friedlaender)
Whale only known from bones washes up on beach in New Zealand
by Jeremy Hance
In 2010, a whale mother and male calf were found dead on Opape Beach in New Zealand. Although clearly in the beaked whale family—the most mysterious marine mammal family—scientists thought the pair were relatively well-known Gray’s beaked whales (Mesoplodon grayi). That is until DNA findings told a shocking story: the mother and calf were actually spade-toothed beaked whales (Mesoplodon traversii), a species no one had ever seen before as anything more than a pile of bones.
“This species is the least known species of whale and one of the world’s rarest living mammals,” write scientists in a new paper in Current Biology on the discovery.
Scientists have known of the spade-toothed beaked whale for over 140 years, but only from a pair of skull fragments and a single mandible. No one was even sure if the species was extinct or not.(read more: MongaBay)(photos: T - Gray’s Beaked Whale, NOAA; B - beached Spade-toothed Beaked Whale, NZ Dept. of Conservation)