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Sea Shepherd vessel Ady Gil has bow sheared off after being struck by Japanese whaling ship

he Sea Shepherd's ship Ady Gil (foreground) after it was rammed by Japanese whaling vessel Shonan Maru 2 (background) in Antarctic waters.

The clash between the anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and Japanese whalers turned ugly today after one of the conservation group's vessels was struck by a whaling ship and severely damaged.

ANTARCTICA_WHALING_Burn The Sea Shepherd's new trimaran Ady Gil had its bow sheared off and was taking on water after it was rammed by the Japanese vessel Shonan Maru 2, which has been tailing the Sea Shepherd flagship boat Steve Irwin since it left port en route to Antarctic waters to try to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt.

Sea Shepherd reports on its website that six crew members on the Ady Gil -- five from New Zealand and one from the Netherlands -- were immediately rescued by the crew of another Sea Shepherd ship, Bob Barker, which arrived on scene Tuesday.

They added that while none of those aboard Ady Gil were injured, the damage to the vessel is catastrophic and that it's unlikely that it can be salvaged.

The conservation group states that this "unprovoked attack" has been captured on film -- Animal Planet has a film crew onboard the Steve Irwin, shooting footage for the third season of the popular "Whale Wars" series.

Thankfully, nobody was killed, but this serious clash may be a portent. This was the most severe encounter between the two interests, and they have not yet even reached Japan's fleet of harpoon and processing vessels.

--Kelly Burgess

Photo: Sea Shepherd's trimaraan Ady Gil after it was rammed by the Japanese whaling vessel Shonan Maru 2, in the background, in Antarctic waters. Credit: JoAnn McArthur / Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

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Comments (181)

"Whales are intelligent animals and they should not be killed for food or any other reason"

That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard.... Pigs are smarter than dogs and the 3rd smartest animal. I rest my case.

why the hell is this in the sports section?

The Japanese people deserve the strongest condemnation for their hypocritical claims of "research" when, in fact, they are simply continuing to hunt down whales because they are tasty. In this regard, Japan (and the other whaling nations) are a moral outlaw, so behaving aggressively should come as no surprise. Both the captain and the owners of Shonan Maru #2 should be charged and tried as criminals, though the few whaling nations still seem to drive international law their way. It is pitiful that the IWC is little more than a hunting club focused on managing commercial harvests, not protection of these highly intelligent sea mammals. That humans continue to engage in whaling is proof of our still very primitive nature.

Is it still illegal to whale? I thought whales has been taken off the endangered species list and were thriving.

They did that boat like the stingray did Steve Irwin.

All that fuel spilled from the sea shepards have made it worse not only for the ocean, but for the whales as well. Stupid morons. Someone is going to get killed soon.

Who is driving that Sea Sheppard boat? Bruce Wayne aka Batman? C'mon, what is that thing? The Japanese probably thought they saw floating alien seacrafts.

I think we need to condemn the Animal Planet for promoting the ideology of eco-terrorism as entertainment or education. Yes we may want to boycott Japanese products, stop eating meat, or go totally vegan, but lets stand against the stations and their sponsors for supporting Politically Correct Terrorism!

Whales are intelligent animals and they should not be killed for food or any other reason; however, with the "reality show" cameras on board, and viewer ratings waiting to be fulfilled or increased, the sensationalism of these actions may have to do less with saving whales and more with sponsor sales.

The Japanese are nothing short of Terrorists! Can't wait for payback.

If we can eat whales, why can't we eat cats and dogs and hey! why not people???

Soylent green, anyone?

To the people eating whales, and suggesting that others do so: You make me sick and I hope that you get eaten by an animal larger, hungrier, and more vicious than you can ever imagine.

People of the earth will regret destroying the most amazing and unique lifeforms on the planet because of the impact it has on the global ecosystem. You may joke about destroying the precious balance of life now, but it is just a matter of time before this way of thinking eradicates everything, including us.

The Sea Shephard Conservancy needs to wake up. They got exactly what they deserved and needed in this meaningless encounter. No doubt you'll see this footage on their propaganda laced show. These people are way out of touch with reality. Soon one of their members will be killed due to their foolish and radical tactics.

I agree with tornadoes: any way you cut it, whether their philosophy is sound or not, their actions make them eco-terrorists. They are no better than fanatic pro-lifers who bomb abortion clinics. There are safer, more effective ways of protest.

these are the type of folks that have highjacked public discourse and put eco-extremism smack into the realm of publicly acceptable thought and behaviour - and the Times is front and and center among the media that gives them a sense of moral legitimacy they do not deserve - what's next, playing chicken with SUV's on the freeway because they don't like their gas mileage?

Pacific Ocean = bigger Idiot

If you're ever in Tokyo and would like to try some whale meat, I suggest Ganso Kujiraya, close to the Shibuya subway stop.

Try the whale sashimi, it literally melts in your mouth.

I agree , the only way to deal with the cruel Japanese is to boycott all Japanese products. They are extremely cruel and the Sea Shepard society has once again been heroic.

THe Japanese governement directly subsidizes the Whalers
midnight rambler

I have always wondered what whale meat taste like. Can you order it as sushi or do they cook it?

There is no excuse for endangering the lives of people at sea, ever. These Sea Sheperd people should be locked up.

Nice...their no different then any other terrorist group. All they are going to do is get themselves killed. Especially, the young followers they bring along on these trips. Good one guys!

Why is this in the Sports section? Is this a wry joke?

These staged events are all about money chain. Get publicity and telephones ring with donor money.

Then eco terrorists buy chalets, hot cars and Cuban cigars.

It has nothing to do with saving a whale except that's the most likely issue to get some cash.


I completely disagree with "Tornadoes28". The Japanese kill whales because they like to eat them. While I might like to dine on white rhino steak, Siberian tiger pate or put to rest the question about whether spotted owls really do taste like chicken, my epicurean curiosity doesn't justify killing members of a species on the brink of extinction. Whale populations are still rebounding from the predation of the last two centuries and there needs to be a complete world-wide ban on hunting them. The fact that the Japanese government dissembles and lies about what they are doing - saying they are taking whales for "scientific purposes" when the meat then shows up in markets across Japan, is evidence that they know the world disagrees with the slaughter of whales and other marine mammals such as dolphins. The movie "The Cove" is a shocking expose that the government of Japan tried to stop. They know what they are doing is wrong. The crew of the Sea Shepherd is trying to bring a great injustice to the attention of the world, and I for one applaud them.

I wonder how much fuel, oil, and debris this little speed boat dumped in the Antarctic. A cruise ship sinks and everyone is up in arms but no one complains about how much this Sea Shephard is polluting the arctic. Will Animal Planet fund the clean up since they are making a bundle off of filming the clash? If someone gets killed are they going to film that and still make money from it?

Sean B. has it right the rules of the road in the ocean is bigger avoids smaller but to a limit. You can't stop large ships on a dime and even kayakers need to get out of the way. In this case a speed boat crossed in front of a 175ft vessel and got hit. No question that the Ady Gil is at fault here.

I strongly disagree with Tornadoes28. The Japanese are completely out of step with an enlightened and modern world with their stubborn insistence on killing whales to extinction. There is no difference between killing whales than killing elephants for their ivory. There is absolutely no reason to be killing these animals today. It is ecologically irresponsible. Sea Shepherd must be at sea tracking these ships, because the public needs to see this unnecessary barbaric activity. I hope the organization will pursue financial redress for this aggressive act through the international courts. Perhaps they can take a lead from the Southern Poverty Law Center and seek civil penalties that would put these whalers out of business.
-John M



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Outposts' primary contributor is Kelly Burgess.