After a long voyage, including one high seas ramming and 85 whales saved from certain death, Sea Shepherd's flagship, the Farley Mowat, is finally returning home to the city that welcomed it with open arms last summer - Melbourne.
After a successful but brief stop over in Perth, the Farley Mowat will be arriving at Victoria Wharf in the Melbourne Docklands, berth 3 on the 25th of July. Over the next four-and-a-half months, preparations will be made to provision the ship for the most dangerous, most expensive, most important Sea Shepherd campaign in its 30-year history of defending whales.
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is currently in the process of acquiring a faster vessel that will accompany the Farley Mowat on its campaign to the Southern Whale Sanctuary. When the whales need nothing short of an armada, Sea Shepherd plans on sending them one.
This year is crucial for the whales. Japan has doubled its illegal quota of minke whales to just over a thousand, and will be targeting, for the first time since the early eighties, 50 endangered fin and 50 endangered humpback whales. "Japan is testing international public opinion, seeing how the world will react to what amounts to nothing short of a full-scale resumption of commercial whaling," said Peter Hammarstedt, Ships' Liaison. "That's why they must be stopped and that's where Sea Shepherd comes in."
According to Founder and President Captain Paul Watson, "Sea Shepherd is not a protest organization. We are an international conservation enforcement organization. We plan to intercept the Japanese whaling fleet and shut them down, permanently."