The four Sea Shepherd ships are underway and have moved into the search
pattern. We believe that the whalers should be in the Southern Ocean soon.
The four ships have completed their speed tests and are very confident that
we will be able to successfully keep up and block the slipway of the Nisshin
Maru once we find her. All the ships have been conducting defensive drills
to fend off any aggressive maneuvers by the harpoon ships, as experienced by
the Bob Barker last year. The new helicopter pilot on the MY Steve Irwin has
been training hard and is getting used to flying in these cold conditions.
He is very enthusiastic and is willing to fly up to 8 hours a day in search
of the whaling fleet.
The entire crew of 120 volunteers is very
optimistic and prepared to shut down the illegal whaling operations this
year. It is 24th of January and it is the first time that no whales have
been harpooned this late into the whaling season. We have all our ships in
position on guard in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary and we anticipate
confrontation with the fleet any day now. The crew have been running through
training drills and all primed and ready to go.
From Jeff Hansen,
Australian Director, Sea Shepherd