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Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

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Title: Sea Shepherd Conservation Society  
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Subject: Whaling in Japan, Paul Watson, 2008 Canadian commercial seal hunt, 1986 Hvalur sinkings, Rod Coronado
Collection: Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society


Founded 1977
Founder Paul Watson
Type Public charity (USA); registered charity (UK)
Focus Marine conservation
Area served
Method Direct action

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (SSCS) is a Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, Washington, in the United States.[1]

Sea Shepherd uses Red Notice (an arrest request to member countries), which was granted by Interpol.[94]


The MY Steve Irwin in September 2011, sailing up river under Tower Bridge in London.
The MY Sam Simon in Hobart, Tasmania December 2012

Sea Shepherd refer to the ships it has operated as Neptune's Navy. The society operates four ships, the MY Steve Irwin, the MY Bob Barker, the MY Sam Simon, and the MV Brigitte Bardot as well as smaller vessels such as RHIBs.[95][96]

The Steve Irwin was obtained in 2007 and originally called the Robert Hunter. It was renamed in honor of The Crocodile Hunter star Steve Irwin.[97] His widow, Terri, gave her support to Sea Shepherd, saying: "Whales have always been in Steve's heart and in 2006 he was investigating the possibility of joining the Sea Shepherd on part of its journey to defend these beautiful animals."[98] The other ship, the 1200 ton Bob Barker, was named after famous television game-show host and animal activist Bob Barker, who made the purchase in Ghana of the retired Norwegian whaling vessel possible with a donation of US$5 million.[99] In February 2010, the Bob Barker collided with the Japanese whaling vessel Yushin Maru No. 3, tearing a gash in the hull of the Bob Barker.[100]

The group also formerly operated the Farley Mowat (impounded by the Canadian government, with Sea Shepherd having stated that they have no intention of paying the legal fines and berthage fees to recover their now obsolete vessel) and the Ady Gil, formerly known as the Earthrace (sunk after a collision with the MV Shōnan Maru 2 whaling security vessel in early 2010)[101] as well as a number of earlier vessels.

Sea Shepherd acquired the Ocean 7 Adventurer for its 2010/11 campaign against Japanese whaling in the Antarctic.[102] In November 2010, mayor Brad Pettitt of Fremantle, Western Australia, christened the vessel Gojira with Fremantle as its home town, making this the first Sea Shepherd ship registered in Australia, with an Australian crew. The Gojira was renamed MV Brigitte Bardot in May 2011 after complaints of copyright infringement by the owners of the "Gojira" copyright.[103]

For the 2011/12 Antarctic campaign, the organization acquired non-weaponized drone aircraft to assist in their surveillance of the whaling ships.[104]

In July 2012 Sam Simon, a co-creator of The Simpsons, was reported to donate money to purchase the fourth vessel, a former German icebreaker.[105] The actual ship however turned out to be a former Japanese weather survey vessel, now called the MY Sam Simon.

On October 18, 2014, Martin Sheen, the actor, unveiled Sea Shepherd’s newest vessel, R/V Martin Sheen, named in his honor,[106] and captained by Oona Layolle of France. The name of this vessel carries the prefix of R/V because it will be engaged in direct action as a research vessel.

In January 2015 two decommissioned, 30 knot, Island-class Coast Guard cutters were spotted flying the Sea Shepherd flag in Annapolis Yacht Basin.[107] In June 2015, Sea Shepherd revealed on their website that they had, in fact, purchased these vessels. One will be named Farley Mowat, after an earlier vessel that Sea Shepherd retired in 2008, and the other will be named Jules Verne, after the author of the novel 20000 Leagues Under the Sea.[108][109]

Books written by members

  • Laura Dakin, "Cookin' Up a Storm: Stories and Recipes from Sea Shepherd's Anti-Whaling Campaigns" (16 March 2015; Book Publishing Company). ISBN 978-1570673122
  • Raffaella Tolicetti, "Think! Eat! Act!: A Sea Shepherd Chef's Vegan Cookbook" (24 July 2014; Microcosm Publishing). ISBN 9781621066668
  • Laurens de Groot, "Hunting the Hunters: At war with the whalers" (2 January 2014; Adlard Coles). ISBN 978-1472903648.
  • Rik Scarce, Eco-Warriors: Understanding the Radical Environmental Movement, second revised ed. (1990; Left Coast Press, 2005), Ch. 6. ISBN 978-1-59874-028-8
  • Paul Watson, Seal Wars: Twenty-five Years in the Front Lines with the Harp Seals (2002; Firefly Books, 2003). ISBN 978-1-55297-751-4
  • Paul Watson, Ocean Warrior: My Battle to End the Illegal Slaughter on the High Seas (1994; Key Porter Books, 1996). ISBN 978-1-55013-599-2
  • David B. Morris, Earth Warrior: Overboard with Paul Watson and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (1995; Golden, CO: Fulcrum Publishing). ISBN 1-55591-203-6
  • Paul Watson, Earthforce! An Earth Warrior's Guide to Strategy (1993; Los Angeles: Chaco Press). ISBN 0-9616019-5-7
  • Paul Watson, "Sea Shepherd : My Fight For Whales And Seals" (1980; W. W. Norton and Company). ISBN 978-0393335804

See also


  1. ^ Lynch, Jim (March 21, 2004). "Friday Harbor, Wash., Activist Elicits Dual Images of Hero, Foe".  
  2. ^ a b c d e Heller, Peter (May 2006). "The Whale Warriors: Whaling in the Antarctic Seas".  
  3. ^ Vidal, John (July 30, 2011). Eco-pirate' Paul Watson is in danger of losing his boat"'". London: The Observer. Retrieved December 1, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Street Fight on the High Seas".  
  5. ^ a b c "Hardline warrior in war to save the whale".  
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Khatchadourian, Raffi (November 5, 2007). "Neptune's Navy". The New Yorker. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Paul Watson, Sea Shepherd and Greenpeace: some facts".  
  8. ^ a b Parry, Lloyd (February 9, 2007). "Whalers aid in Antarctic rescue of environmentalists".  
  9. ^ a b "Federal Bureau of Investigation – Congressional Testimony". Federal Bureau of Investigation. February 12, 2002. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "Sealing activists bailed out with bag of toonies".  
  11. ^ a b c d e f g "Paul Watson: Sea Shepherd eco-warrior fighting to stop whaling and seal hunts". London: April 17, 2009. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ Vidal, John (January 2, 2006). "Greenpeace fights sea battle with rival anti-whaling ship". London: The Guardian. Retrieved May 1, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Environmentalists Jailed After Painting Baby Seals Red". Ocala Star-Banner. March 11, 1979. p. 2A. 
  15. ^ "Seal-hunt protesters fear more trouble". The Spokesman-Review. March 12, 1979. p. 3. 
  16. ^ "'"Conservationist Admits Ramming 'Whaler. The Age. Retrieved July 31, 2009. 
  17. ^ a b Nagtzaam, Gerry; Lentini, Pete (January 2008). "Vigilantes on the High Seas?: The Sea Shepherds and Political Violence". Terrorism and Political Violence 20 (1): 110–133.  
  18. ^ a b c d Le Montre, Darrah (June 9, 2009). "Whale Wars' Sea Shepherd Nets Anthony Kiedis and Rick Rubin's Support". Hollywood Today. Retrieved July 30, 2009. 
  19. ^ Manami Okazaki (February 9, 2010). "Watson to whalers: We will never surrender".  
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  22. ^ "Japanese whalers attack Campbell's links". The Sydney Morning Herald. Australian Associated Press. December 15, 2006. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
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  27. ^ Woodham, Kerre (January 10, 2010). "Lucky ocean crash". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved June 5, 2010. 
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  29. ^ Darby, Andrew (March 3, 2008). "Sea Shepherd activists attack Japanese whaler". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved June 4, 2009. 
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  31. ^ Campbell, Duncan (June 3, 2002). "Champion of seas faces attempted murder case". The Guardian (London). Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  32. ^ Vidal, John (January 2, 2006). "Greenpeace fights sea battle with rival anti-whaling ship". London: The Guardian. Retrieved June 8, 2009. 
  33. ^ Young, Emma (January 15, 2008). "Australia rules Japanese whaling illegal". New Scientist. Retrieved June 8, 2009. 
  34. ^ Summers, Chris (April 30, 2002). "Spotlight on Greenpeace rebel". BBC News. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  35. ^ Vidal, John (January 2, 2006). "Greenpeace fights sea battle with rival anti-whaling ship". London: The Guardian. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  36. ^ McKie, Robin (January 13, 2008). "Green ships in deadly duel with whalers". London: The Guardian. Retrieved June 11, 2009. 
  37. ^ Fraser, Doug (April 9, 2008). "Cape man fights whalers". Cape Cod Times. Retrieved June 11, 2009. 
  38. ^ Kingston, Jeff, "Whaling whoppers debunked", The Japan Times, April 25, 2010, p. 11.
  39. ^ Sheridan, Dick (March 17, 1995). "Seal Fishermen Attack Group". New York: NY Daily News. Retrieved June 27, 2009. 
  40. ^ "National News Briefs; Whale Hunt Protesters Are Arrested by Police". The New York Times. November 2, 1998. p. 19. Retrieved July 13, 2009. 
  41. ^ "Seal defenders attacked".  
  42. ^ "Sealers scuffle with protesters: 'I hit one guy with my fist to defend myself:' ship's captain". Edmonton Journal. April 1, 2005. 
  43. ^ "Anti-sealing activist opts to pay fine rather than face jail". The Canadian Press. April 3, 2006. 
  44. ^ "St-Pierre fishermen chase anti-sealing ship from harbour". CBC News. April 4, 2008. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  45. ^ "Japanese Whaling Advocates Gather in Tokyo". New Tang Dynasty Television. February 23, 2010. Retrieved February 24, 2010. 
  46. ^ Preville, Philip (June 5, 1997). "Live from jail".  
  47. ^ Lacitis, Erik (November 3, 1998). "Lead Stuntman In Anti-Whaling Drama Is One Seasoned Actor". The Seattle Times. Retrieved August 1, 2009. 
  48. ^ Strong, Geoff (January 14, 2006). "Sophisticated media machine blows whalers out of the water". The Age (Melbourne). Retrieved August 1, 2009. 
  49. ^ "International Incidents R Us". Whale Wars. Season 1. Episode 3. 2008-11-14. Animal Planet. 
  50. ^ Paul Watson. 1993. Earthforce! An Earth Warrior's Guide to Strategy. La Caňada, CA: Chaco Press, p. 42.
  51. ^ The Australian Accessed 090810
  52. ^ Millar, Peter (January 10, 2010). "Ady Gil downed by Japanese whalers".  
  53. ^ "Modest Mouse "King Rat" Directed by Heath Ledger |". Archived from the original on September 15, 2010. Retrieved January 9, 2010. 
  54. ^ "Heath Ledger's graphic animation". Melbourne: The Age. Associated Press. August 5, 2009. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  55. ^ Bassett, Deborah. "Kelly Slater Teams Up With Sea Shepherd". Surfer magazine. Retrieved June 8, 2009. 
  56. ^ "Artist to be hung on shark hooks". BBC News. September 3, 2008. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  57. ^ "Shark protester hooked". The Sun (London). September 3, 2008. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  58. ^ "Commentary No. 74: Single Issue Terrorism". Canadian Security Intelligence Service. April 25, 2008. Retrieved January 9, 2010. 
  59. ^ a b Darby, Andrew (May 10, 2009). "Whale activist hits visa hurdle". The Age (Hobart). Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  60. ^ "Greens Welcome Steve Irwin's Safe Return to Hobart". The Tasmanian Greens. February 21, 2009. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  61. ^ Taylor, Lenore (January 12, 2012). "'"Joyce hails tax break bar on charity 'crims.  
  62. ^ "Aust federal govt distances itself from raid". Perth Now. February 22, 2009. Retrieved December 21, 2013. 
  63. ^ Thomas, Pete (October 5, 2009). "Whale wars saga begins with Sea Shepherd's Paul Watson under investigation". The Los Angeles Times, Outposts. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  64. ^ "Aust federal govt distances itself from raid". Television New Zealand. Australian Associated Press. February 22, 2009. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  65. ^ Clifford, Liam (October 19, 2009). "Australian immigration denies delaying Sea Shepherd's visa – Immigration News". Global Visas. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  66. ^ "Dalai Lama criticises anti-whaling protesters".  
  67. ^ Sea Shepherd kom med norsk flagg – Norsk rikskringkasting AS, published January 8, 2010. (Norwegian)
  68. ^ Stuart, Myiow (February 13, 2009). "Five Nations Confederacy Flag Flying Proud on Earth's Oceans". Mohawk Traditional Council. Retrieved September 21, 2009. 
  69. ^ "Detained antiwhaling activist in good health: Okada".  
  70. ^ Darby, Andrew (January 6, 2007). "Buccaneer a badge of honour for whaling opponent".  
  71. ^ Britain to deregister anti-whaler after Japan pipes up, The Age, January 30, 2007
  72. ^ "Dutch bill would hit Sea Shepherd". The Japan Times. February 6, 2010. Retrieved February 6, 2010. 
  73. ^ Alabaster, Jay (January 3, 2011). "WikiLeaks: Sea Shepherd, Anti-Whaling Group, Tax Exempt Status Revocation Discussed By U.S., Japan Officials". The Huffington Post. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  74. ^ Maher, Sid (January 4, 2011). "WikiLeaks cables reveal Japan, US 'plot' to sink activists". The Australian. Retrieved 3 January 2011. 
  75. ^ Koh, Yoree (January 3, 2011). "WikiLeaks Japan: Whale Diplomacy". The Wallstreet Journal. Retrieved 3 January 2011. 
  76. ^ "Sea Shepherd sued in U.S. by whalers".  
  77. ^ Jones, Richard (February 16, 2012). "Judge won't stop anti-whaling activists".  
  78. ^ Dwyer, Molly (December 17, 2012). "Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington Richard A. Jones, District Judge, Presiding" (PDF). United States Court of Appeals. Retrieved December 18, 2012. 
  79. ^ "Group defiant over US ban on tackling Japan whalers".  
  80. ^ Martinez, Michael (January 9, 2013). Whale Wars' TV star-activist resigns after court injunction"'".  
  81. ^ McCurry, Justin (February 1, 2013). "Australia orders Japanese whalers to stay away". London:  
  82. ^ "US Supreme Court rejects Sea Shepherd bid".  
  83. ^ "'"US court brands whale activists Sea Shepherd 'pirates.  
  84. ^ Yuhas, Alan (February 27, 2013). "Sea Shepherd conservation group declared 'pirates' in US court ruling". London:  
  85. ^ "Court Orders Injunction Against ‘Piracy’ by Anti-Whaling Group". Metropolitan News-Enterprise. February 27, 2013. 
  86. ^ "‘We’re not pirates,’ anti-whaling sailor Paul Watson tells Seattle court".  
  87. ^
  88. ^ Balzan, Jurgen (March 6, 2012). "Government initiates libel proceedings against Sea Shepherd founder".  
  89. ^ "Paul Watson Arrested: Sea Shepherd Says Founder Arrested In Germany". The Huffington Post. Associated Press. May 14, 2012. Retrieved May 29, 2012. 
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  92. ^ Hopper, Tristin (July 25, 2012). "'"Canadian-born Sea Shepherd boss Paul Watson skips bail in Germany for 'unknown destination. National Post. Retrieved August 4, 2012. 
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  94. ^ "Interpol issues Watson Red Notice".  
  95. ^ "Sea Shepherd eyes new ship". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. April 8, 2009. Retrieved January 10, 2010. 
  96. ^ Darby, Andrew (June 26, 2009). Spaceship' boosts anti-whaling force"'".  
  97. ^ Wotherspoon, Sarah (December 5, 2007). "Protest ship renamed to honor Croc Hunter Steve Irwin". Herald Sun. Retrieved July 14, 2009. 
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  100. ^ Violence Escalates in Southern Ocean Whaling Battle Environment News Service
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External links

  • Official website
The conflict took place during filming for the documentary [90] Watson was charged with violating navigational regulations.[89] In May 2012, Watson was detained by German authorities after he arrived at the Frankfurt Airport based on a request from the government of Costa Rica. The charge stemmed from an altercation in 2002 in which Sea Shepherd contends that the other vessel was shark finning in Guatemalan waters. Members of the other involved ship said that Sea Shepherd was trying to kill them.

In March 2012, reacting to Paul Watson's allegation that Maltese politicians were bribed by the Bluefin tuna industry, Prime Minister of Malta Lawrence Gonzi announced that the government would initiate libel proceedings against the Sea Shepherd founder.[88]

In 2013, [87]

In December 2011, the Seattle. The suit requested an injunction to stop Sea Shepherd's operations against Japanese whalers. The suit was filed in Seattle because Sea Shepherd is based in the state of Washington.[76] The federal court denied the ICR's preliminary injunction against SSCS.[77] The ICR and Kyodo Senpaku appealed and, on December 17, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an injunction against Paul Watson, Sea Shepherd and any party acting in concert with them from physically attacking any person or vessel of the ICR and requiring them to stay at least 500 yd (457 m) from their vessels.[78][79] After the court ruling, Paul Watson stepped down and Bob Brown succeeded his role as the leader of SSCS.[80][81] Sea Shepherd appealed to the US Supreme Court to have the injunction set aside, but the appeal was rejected.[82] On February 26, 2013, the Court of Appeals maintained the injunction, stating that SSCS's activities were "the very embodiment of piracy".[83][84] This reversed a previous decision by Richard A. Jones, who was removed as trial judge for abuse of discretion.[85][86]

Officials in Japan have discussed revoking the group's tax exempt status with their counterparts in the United States.[73][74][75]

The ships of the fleet have flown the flags of different nations and the opinion of several governments that the vessels are engaged in inappropriate activities has several times led to registration issues for Sea Shepherd vessels.[67][68] Canada, Belize, UK and Togo have revoked the registrations of various vessels.[69][70][71] Both the Steve Irwin and Bob Barker ships now sail under Dutch flag leading to direct complaints by the Japanese government towards Dutch ambassadors. The Netherlands consequently considered revoking the registrations for both vessels but finally decided not to do so.[72]

Paul Watson said to Discovery Channel the Dalai Lama sent a letter of support for Sea Shepherd's volunteers accompanied by a wrathful, scowling statue of the deity Hayagriva,[11] which expresses compassion and determination in overcoming obstacles. In 2010 during a visit to Japan, the Dalai Lama said that while he agrees with the goal of stopping Japan from hunting whales, they should stop using violent methods to achieve that goal.[66]

In October 2009, The Australian Immigration Department ruled that Watson and his First Officer, Peter Hammarstedt, must satisfy new good-character requirements to obtain business visas, requiring them to provide police references from the governments of the United States, Canada and Norway. Watson criticized what he considered a submission to Japanese pressure by the Rudd government.[59] The Australian government responded by rejecting the idea that it was in some way delaying Watson, and on October 20, 2009 issued visas to Watson and Hammarstedt.[65]

A variation of the flag used by the group.

When the Steve Irwin returned to Hobart, Tasmania in February 2009, Australian Federal Police seized film footage and the ship's logs, reportedly prompted by complaints from Japan.[62][63] Brown demanded that the Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, order their immediate return, but a spokesman for the Home Affairs Minister said it was a federal police matter.[64]

Sea Shepherd has based many of its operations out of Australia with foreign crew members being able to travel in and out of the country on tourist [61]

In testimony on "The Threat of Eco-Terrorism" given to the a US congressional subcommittee in 2002, Sea Shepherd was the first group mentioned by an FBI official for having attacked commercial fishing operations by cutting drift nets.[9] An earlier Canadian intelligence report on "single issue terrorism" stated that "Watson and his supporters have been involved in a number of militant actions against whale hunting, driftnet fishing, seal hunting and other related issues" and mentions "activities against logging operations in Canada".[58] In 2007, Ian Campbell, then the Australian Environment Minister and a vigorous critic of Japan's whaling, once opposed Sea Shepherd's tactics, saying that it really put the cause of conservation backwards.[8] Due to the 2008 operations against Canadian seal hunters, Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, called Watson a terrorist and said that Sea Shepherd was not welcome in the province.[10] The group has been accused of eco-terrorism by the Japanese government.[11]

Governmental response

The Lush cosmetics company joined with Sea Shepherd to raise awareness about the practice of shark finning in 2008. Lush produced 'Shark Fin Soap' (punning on 'shark fin soup'); all sale proceeds were directed to Sea Shepherd.[56] To launch the soap and awareness campaign a performance artist suspended herself, using hooks in her flesh, in a Lush shopfront window in London.[57]

From the music industry, Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Leona Lewis, Rick Rubin, and the groups Hawkwind, The Red Paintings, Propagandhi, and Gojira have financially supported Sea Shepherd.[18] In 2009, professional surfer Kelly Slater joined a Quiksilver Australia/Sea Shepherd partnership featuring a fund-raising clothing line, including board shorts designed by Slater.[55] In 2013 alt-metal band Klogr started supporting Sea Shepherd in Europe through the videos "Guinea Pigs" (2013) and "Zero Tolerance" (2014), featuring images from Sea Shepherd documentaries filmed in Taiji and other missions.

Sea Shepherd has received financial contributions from celebrities and businessmen such as entrepreneur Steve Wynn, television personality Bob Barker, and John Paul DeJoria, as well as other celebrities.[6][6][18] Martin Sheen, Daryl Hannah, and Richard Dean Anderson have joined the group during protests. Actors including Edward Norton, Pierce Brosnan, Christian Bale, and Emily Deschanel have supported the group through contributions,[11] while William Shatner has also been mentioned as supporting the group.[52] In 2007, actor Heath Ledger conceived and directed a music video of the Modest Mouse song "King Rat", intended to raise awareness of the whale hunts taking place each year off the coast of his native Australia. Although Ledger died before the video could be completed, others finished it in his honor and debuted the video online in August 2009. Proceeds from iTunes sales of the video in its first month of release were donated to Sea Shepherd.[53][54]

Sea Shepherd has also used satellite uplinks, webcams, and internet blogging during its operations in the Southern Ocean, and has invited the media to ride along.[51] In 2006, representatives from Seven network and National Geographic magazine, along with documentary filmmakers, accompanied the group.[2] In a television series entitled Whale Wars, Discovery Communications, Inc. documented Sea Shepherd's 2008/09 Antarctic campaign against Japanese whalers, following events on the Steve Irwin.[11] The program premiered on November 7, 2008, on Discovery's Animal Planet network.

Watson's public relations savvy is shown in an episode of Whale Wars when he creates an international "media storm"[49] after two crewmembers are detained on a Japanese whaling vessel. In his book, Earthforce!, Watson advises readers to make up facts and figures when they need to, and to deliver them to reporters confidently.[6] He also states that the "truth is irrelevant" due to the nature of mass media.[50] In response to criticism that he manipulates the media, Watson has stated: "What we do is provide the media with the kind of stories they can't resist... and this is how we bring attention to what's happening to the whales, the seals, the sharks and the other marine conservation campaigns we're involved in."[11]

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has received attention from the press and been called "media savvy".[2][46] The group has worked with journalists and has made statements through press releases to spread its message during various campaigns.[47][48]

A $5 million donation from Bob Barker facilitated the purchase of the MY Bob Barker, pictured here docked in Hobart, Tasmania.

Public relations

Sea Shepherd has been criticized and sometimes physically attacked by people in several of the countries they protest against. In March 1995, a mob of Canadian seal hunters stormed the hotel where members were staying. They fled while the mob ransacked their room.[39] In November 1998, Makah seized an inflatable boat belonging to the group and threw rocks at the Sea Shepherd's Sirenian in response to protests over their whale hunt.[40] In 2005, 11 Sea Shepherd crew were involved in an altercation with sealers while on the ice. The sealers were not charged with any crime, but the activists were arrested and later convicted for approaching too close to the hunt.[41][42][43] In 2008, fishermen in the French islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon cut the mooring lines of the Farley Mowat after hearing Watson make disparaging comments about the deaths of four seal hunters.[44] In February 2010, pro-whaling demonstrators gathered outside the Australian Embassy in Tokyo to protest the group. A political activist said that Sea Shepherd's actions were "absolutely racial discrimination against Japanese people".[45] In response, Sea Shepherd stated that they also oppose whaling in the Faroe Islands, sealing in Canada, etc. In response to the events of the sinking of the MY Ady Gil in January 2010, Glenn Inwood, whose firm handles public relations on behalf of the Japanese Institute of Cetacean Research, accused Sea Shepherd of being "hostile eco-terrorists".[5]

[38], Jun Morikawa states that Sea Shepherd's confrontational tactics have actually strengthened Japan's resolve to continue with its whaling program. According to Morikawa, Sea Shepherd's activities against Japan's whaling ships have allowed the Japanese government to rally domestic support for the program from Japanese who were otherwise ambivalent about the practice of hunting and eating whales.Whaling in Japan Both groups protest the Japanese whale hunts in the Southern Ocean but Greenpeace has a policy to not assist Sea Shepherd in finding the whalers. In his 2009 book, [7] forces as dangerous, piratical terrorists, Sea Shepherd could undermine the forces within Japan which could actually bring whaling to an end".anti-whaling Greenpeace is also critical of the group on its website and state: "By making it easy to paint [11] Greenpeace has called Watson a violent extremist and will no longer comment on his activities.[37][36] Watson left

Watson considers the actions of Sea Shepherd to be against criminal operations and has called the group an anti-poaching organization.[18] Critics claim that Sea Shepherd's actions constitute violations of international law,[30] while Watson has stated that Sea Shepherd believes that their actions constitute an attempt to enforce international conservation laws and international maritime law under the World Charter for Nature adopted by the United Nations.[31][32] Australia has declared Japan's hunt in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary to be illegal, and federal court judge Jim Allsop has stated "there is no practical mechanism by which orders of this court can be enforced".[33] The lack of official enforcement mechanisms in that law prompted the Society to adopt, without official sanction, what it sees as a law enforcement mission. A 2008 academic paper by researchers at Monash University in Melbourne, Victoria concluded that the group "may be best categorized as a vigilante group, because they say they are seeking to enforce a legal status quo because of states' and the international community's inabilities or unwillingness to do so".[17]

[29][28] Their practice of attacking and sinking other ships has led to reports of injuries to other sailors as well as the Sea Shepherd crew, including concussions and complications from chemical attacks.[27] According to its mission statement, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society "uses innovative

Sea Shepherd engages in conventional protests and direct actions to protect marine wildlife. Sea Shepherd operations have included interdiction against commercial fishing, shark poaching and finning, seal hunting, and whaling.[2][24] The group has been active in intervening against fishing and poaching in the South Pacific, the Mediterranean, and in waters around the Galapagos Islands.


[23]. The Media and Arts Advisory Board includes several major Hollywood stars. There is a Photography Advisory Board and a Financial and Management Advisory Board.Tom Regan The Animal Welfare, Humane and Animal Rights Advisory Board includes animal rights philosopher [22][21] Sea Shepherd is governed by a

[6] Sea Shepherd is a non-government and non-profit environmental organization and in the United States has a

A wildlife advocate during an education session on board RV Farley Mowat.


Starting in September 2010, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has positioned a crew in Taiji, Japan to monitor and report their annual dolphin drive hunt.

After having spent the 1980s undertaking a variety of controversial and dangerous operations in support of various marine conservation aims, in the 1990s the group has been described as having undertaken a shift in their public attitude.[6] Having previously argued primarily from an ethical viewpoint, from the 1990s, Watson's group now also started ascribing themselves law enforcement powers, using its interpretation of maritime and conservation law, to describe themselves as an anti-poaching agency.[6][18] In some cases in the 2000s, they cooperated with official government efforts against maritime poaching, such as in Costa Rican waters, though the agreements often did not last long before conflict ensued.[19]

The first direct action undertaken by Sea Shepherd was against Canadian seal hunting in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in March 1979.[14][15] Also in 1979, the group made headlines when, for the first time, they rammed a whaling vessel,[16] the notorious pirate whaling vessel Sierra.[17] Such acts continued with Sea Shepherd claiming responsibility for damaging or sinking multiple whaling ships, through sabotage or ramming. The group has attempted to intervene against Russian, Spanish, Norwegian, Icelandic, Makah, Faroese, and Japanese whalers in multiple campaigns around the globe.[2][6] Setting a pattern that the group would keep up in later years, the group managed to scuttle a Portuguese whaling vessel, though the first Sea Shepherd was impounded, and lost. Watson states he used the money gained from selling the story rights to fund his next vessel.[6]

The predecessor organization of Sea Shepherd, the "Earth Force Society", was formed in 1977, after its founder, Paul Watson was ousted from the board of Greenpeace for disagreements over his direct action activism which clashed with their pacifist ethos.[13] Watson soon left Greenpeace. Initially without funding and with only a small group of supporters, in 1978 Watson managed to convince Cleveland Amory, head of the Fund for Animals to fund Watson's first vessel, the Sea Shepherd.[6]



  • History 1
  • Organization 2
  • Activism 3
  • Public relations 4
  • Governmental response 5
  • Vessels 6
  • Books written by members 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10

Sea Shepherd has received support for its tactics against fishing, whaling, and seal hunting from many celebrities, such as musicians and TV personalities. The tactics of Sea Shepherd have been opposed, even by those who denounce whaling, such as Greenpeace[7] and the governments of Australia and New Zealand.[8] An FBI section chief,[9] the Premier of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador,[10] and the Japanese government[11] have called them eco-terrorists. Paul Watson and American members of Sea Shepherd are currently prohibited by US courts from approaching or harassing Japanese whalers.[12]

Sea Shepherd currently operates the vessels MY Steve Irwin, the MY Bob Barker, the MY Sam Simon (donated and named after Sam Simon, co-founder of The Simpsons) and the MV Brigitte Bardot. Operations have included scuttling and disabling whaling vessels at harbor, intervening in Canadian and Namibian seal hunts,[3] shining laser light into the eyes of whalers,[4][5] throwing bottles of foul-smelling butyric acid onto vessels at sea,[5] boarding of whaling vessels while at sea, and seizure and destruction of drift nets at sea. Sea Shepherd claims that their aggressive actions are necessary, as the international community has shown itself unwilling or unable to stop species-endangering whaling and fishing practices.[6]

, a development which brought the group much publicity. Southern Ocean in the Japanese whaling fleet based on the group's encounters with the Whale Wars began filming the weekly series Animal Planet to spread its message via the media. In 2008, public relations The group has a strong focus on [2]

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