Japan's annual dolphin cull disrupted by activists

An animal rights campaigner who trained dolphins for the 1960s television series Flipper has managed to disrupt the first two days of the annual dolphin hunt in the Japanese town of Taiji, but accepts that as soon as he leaves the fishermen will resume the killing.

"There were no dolphins taken on the first two days because we have managed to focus so much media attention on the slaughter," Ric O'Barry told The Daily Telegraph from Taiji. "I feel great, but I know it's only temporary.

"It's very expensive for me be here and I can't stay for the whole six months of the season,"


Mr O'Barry plans to remain in the town for a week, but has already had a showdown with local people angry at what they perceive to be interference in the industry.

On Tuesday morning, as he tried to enter a grocery store, the head of the fishing union blocked his way and refused to allow him to buy any food.

"It has been an exciting morning and the people here are very hostile," he said. "But as long as this goes on and we keep the pressure on, they cannot hunt the dolphins."

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