The Death of a family…….. The Cove, Taiji.

November 30th 2010

Today was extremely hard trying to get a grip on emotions while filming, recording and taking pictures at the same time. I watched a small pod of dolphins, around 10-11 pushed into the killing cove. The pod was nothing like the size of yesterday but size has no meaning here, They are ALL individuals with a right to live. The family huddled together as if they knew their fate and it was heartbreaking. It was almost like they were holding on to each other. You just can’t help getting emotional and a sense of uselessness. I want to swim in there, release them and apologise for my own species.

Point of no return

Waiting for their death

Watching these magnificent creatures trapped into an area the size of a large room with the smell of death would be traumatizing, I wonder what fear they would be going through and what words they would say to each other in their final minutes. I wanted them to know we were there for them in some pathetic way. (I cry as I write this, I can’t help it, the tears are blurring what I write down…) The monsters went in with their small boats and everything was over in 10 minutes. I could hear the engines drive them onto the pebble beach inside the killing cove, One by one they would have been killed as their family unit waited for their turn…………
The locals watch from a viewing area by the toilets with smiles on their faces, The locals stop at the roadside when the boats come in with a pod, The locals know exactly what happens in this shit-hole of a place. Don’t be kidded that these people are not aware of what is happening here. The fishermen all have families and people talk…..

The mercury is working on these bastards

Because of the work the guardians are doing here, the fishermen are learning to conceal their despicable acts. Everything now has thought put into it, concealing is the word here, they are now covering up the bodies as they shift them to the gutting barge with blue tarpaulin. No more will you see the tails lassoed on the side of the boats as they drag their victims away from the cove. The trouble is, we all know what they are doing and they know this is wrong otherwise why hide it? If this is a cultural tradition then show it?

tradition |trəˈdi sh ən|
1 the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation, or the fact of being passed on in this way : every shade of color is fixed by tradition and governed by religious laws.
• a long-established custom or belief that has been passed on in this way : Japan’s unique cultural traditions.
• [in sing. ] an artistic or literary method or style established by an artist, writer, or movement, and subsequently followed by others : visionary works in the tradition of William Blake.

I had to go to the butcher house after, I felt duty bound, it was like following the hearse to give my last respects to the animals whose life was so cruelly taken by my species.
I’m amazed at Scott West and his daughter for the endurance they have shown while down here, This is only my second day witnessing these atrocities, Hell knows how they must feel after 3 months!
Tomorrow will show more evil here i’m sure. Without YOUR pressure on the Japanese government this work here would be futile, I thank you for all the encouragment, It is a strength to us all here..
Please keep those calls going to the Emabassy…..
The following organizations have the power to stop this now.Taiji Mayor Sangen…City Hall: phone: 81-73-559-2335 Fax: 81-73-559-2801Taiji Whale Museum: 81-73-559-3732Taiji Fishermens Union (The FU) Phone: 81-73-559-2340Fax: 81-73-559-2821

Please visit my facebook pages for daily updates from the Cove…
You can also Twitter here…..

The cove, passing of a family by Martyn Stewart
Video to follow soon………..
Captive dolphins by Martyn Stewart

About Martyn Stewart

10 Responses to “The Death of a family…….. The Cove, Taiji.”

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  1. Geneva says:

    Thank you Martyn for bearing witness for the Dolphins♥.
    IMHO There needs to be an alternative plan formulated to end this.
    As long as there is profit in the hunting and selling of Dolphins this will continue.
    I wish that I had the resources to hire a firm, a planning commission that could work out an actual viable alternative for the Taiji area to switch to another way. As horrible as all of this is I do not think it will stop unless another profitable way is presented to the area. Money is talking or they would abandon this activity. Yes, the citizens are laughing in the photo because right now it an ‘us’ against ‘them’ battle of wills. They are fighting for ‘their side’. Heads are butting in Taiji but no real solution is in site.
    Is there anyone out there that supports the Dolphin Cause that has the resources and can help come up with a real viable alternative for Taiji? We need you NOW. These fisherman, and brokers need to be given a better path to follow. Money is talking. An actual plan to show them another profitable path to take is urgently needed. Taiji Cove is so beautiful I cannot help but think it could be put to better and more profitable use than running red with the blood of dolphins. My humble opinion.

  2. Tim Nunn says:


    I’ve just tweeted this and the Soundcloud direct link. I hope you get some hits.

  3. Lori says:

    Martyn, thank you for letting all of us know here what is going on. What a horrible horrible thing this is! My heart breaks for these poor Dolphins every day with or without Dolphins in the cove, because I know -if not today, then tomorrow or the next day it will happen all over again. Thank you and the other Cove Guardians (past, present & future ) and the Sea Shepherd Society for bearing witness and getting the word out day to day for the rest of us, so that we in turn can do our part to get the word out as well. Stay Strong. BLESSINGS.

  4. Ashley S. says:

    Thank you, Martyn. Your soundcloud was the most heartbreaking thing I’ve heard. Something about the sounds of the skiffs paired along with your postings of what was happening at different time frames, really made this all the more real- as if I was right there. I can only imagine how difficult this must be for all of you cove guardians. But we all can’t thank you enough. You guys are the True heroes. As for the barbarians of Taiji, they can go ahead and try to hide all they want. The damage has already been done. We got their number. And everyone knows what they’re doing. To be honest with you, I’m truly sickened by the above photo of the citizens of Taiji who are laughing. What the hell is the matter with these people? Even if you are all about eating dolphins, why would you find an animal going through an agonizing death funny? Sickos.
    Please don’t get discouraged. You’re the eyes and ears for these sweet dolphins. And these creeps have innocent blood on their hands, but I’ve got my own blood, sweat and tears here- I call, write and fax day in and day out. I will never stop fighting until they do. Thank you again, Martyn.

  5. Louise says:

    I have been wondering too, do the Japanese people know what is happening in Taiji? Am I ignorant in saying that if the rest of the world knows, then they must too. Do they just not want to know? That is different. No one told me. I care deeply for animals and my entire life has been devoted to being a voice for them. But my own family has no clue. Unless you are willing to see, you do not.

  6. Chris Davidson says:


    Good show, I feel like you are doing something real…more than most of us!

  7. KYM FOSTER says:

    Martyn, I think you are incredible like Elora and her father to witness these barbaric goings on. I was raging after reading your blog when stating the locals stand at a viewing point with smiles on their faces. Jesus christ I would have burst a blood vessel had I seen that. I had to withdraw from leaving comments on fb when I belonged to the group as I got reprimanded by someone called Janet accusing me of being racist. How in gods name can anyone speak highly of the Japanese whilst letting these cruel deeds be repeated day after day after day, year after year. I was told to not be hostile towards them as many were unaware of these goings on. ABSOLUTE HOGWASH !!!!! Of course they know its going on (they do now anyway, perhaps a few years back they didnt) it just isnt important enough to that race of people. Animals in the east have absolutely no status at all. I am sorry to say I cannot see an end to this hence my withdrawal. But like you say, if I were there, there is no way anyone would prevent me from getting in there with them (as Carrie did) police or no police. Let them bloody shoot me, I would die for the cause. You are soooooooooo brave Martyn simply by being there, tears constantly run down my face reading Mark Bamberry’s facebook page each day. I still contact emabassies, prime minister, etc day after day I just have to refrain from stating my comments on fb. I admire you so much doing this, I realise its something that has to be done, in order to keep showing the World the disgrace Japan has brought upon itself. I hate them with a passion! Axe thru the tv, stamped on my mobile, anything Japanese is poison to me. I have never felt so much hate, and I know animals are cruelly treated everywhere in this EVIL place we live, Bears for bile, Wolves for furs, Seals for furs, Dogs and cats for restaurants, the list goes on it will never stop and I honestly believe it could only stop if humanity died out and animals ruled the earth because man just cannot leave them alone. My heart and thoughts are constantly with yu while you are there – you are a trooper Martyn – Kym

  8. Louise says:

    I could not agree with you more!!! I feel all the same anger as you! Thanks for being brave and putting it into words!! They are scum and I cannot accept that the Japanese people do not know what is going on, I think they just do not care!!!!!!

  9. “The systematic torture of sentient beings, whatever the pretext and in whatever form, cannot achieve anything more than it already has: to show us what is the lowest point of debasement man can reach . . . if that’s what we want to know.” – Joaquin Phoenix | quote from EARTHLINGS

  10. I will always remember the day when I learned that at best, at some good point in a persons life, their view of the world changes from the eyes — to the heart. Once the heart has been touched there is always a transformation of action. Your care clearly shows in this impassioned action on behalf of the dolphins of the cove at Taiji. It is an example to all about how each person can make a difference in the effort to protect wildlife and preserve their safety. Be Kind to Animals is a resonate motto for these combined erstwhile efforts to share witness to that which so needs to change.

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