Ric O’Barry – ‘Change is in the Air’ – Taiji London Demo

Protesters gathered in their hundreds in another demo, on the 16th of October 2015, against the tragic culling of dolphins in Taiji Cove Japan every year. The joint consensus was clear – to keep the pressure on the Japanese authorities. The UK protests have been coming regularly now, every month or so and it was clear that the Japanese Embassy were feeling the pressure, as they made the point of removing their flag from outside. Many protesters saw this as a positive sign, a sign that the authorities were starting to be embarrassed by the negative connotations attached to the cruel slaughter of the dolphins in the eyes of the world.

Taiji Cove London Protest October 2015. Anneka Svenska is joined by wildlife presenter Nigel Marven, Dolphin Project's Ric O'barry and Born Free's Dominic Dyer

Protesters were delighted that The Dolphin Project’s Ric O’Barry had travelled all the way to the UK to take part in this demo. Ric is famous for being the trainer in the Flipper movies back in the 60’s. He captured from the wild several dolphins and trained them. He turned his back on this profession when one of his beloved dolphins committed suicide in front of his very eyes. He saw her sink to the bottom of the pool and never return for air – he is convinced she was deeply unhappy for her loss of freedom.


Ric O’Barry made an amazing transformation in his life and founded The Dolphin Project. A charity intent on putting a stop to the capture of wild dolphins and also any cruelty and slaughter of dolphins the world around. Ric and his comrades have spent many years in Taiji Cove documenting the activities of the dolphin slaughter and reporting it back to the world. He has truly given an eye to the world into the deeply disturbing and tragic murder of thousands of dolphins annually. He has educated millions and put the ongoing pressure onto the Japanese authorities to stop this cruel murder once and for all.


I interviewed Ric and was really happy with some of his observations. Firstly he praised the UK and London for being the centre of change. He said that due to our freedom of speech over here, we are to be congratulated for the biggest change in the world and the largest amount of press. He was happy to see the flag gone from the Embassy and told me that it correlated with many changes he has been seeing in Japan this year. It has been the first year, he said, where he has been harassed and chased by the police. He has been taken in for questioning many times, in attempts to distract him away from his work at the Cove. He sees it all as positive; he feels that change is in the air.

Ric said that we must keep the pressure on and at some point the dolphin slaughter will end.


There were speeches by Born Free’s policy adviser Dominic Dyer, Cyclist Ollie Blackmore and Dolphin Project’s Maria Nangle. They have all witnessed change in the cove. Ollie mentioned that many Japanese citizens deeply oppose the cull and that to remember that the cull is specific to the authorities and those attached directly with Taiji and that the world must not judge the citizens of Japan on the atrocities of one area in particular of the country. TV’s wildlife presenter Nigel Marven came along for support, due to his agreement that the dolphin abuse needs to end now.


It was wonderful to see children protesting and it is important to remember that these are our animal heroes of tomorrow, so we must educate them and show them just how important it is to love and care for the world’s animals….before it is too late.

To watch the Green World TV Film of the day please click below:

Thankyou to to following people who have donated photos to use in this blog:
Sarah Chilvers
Heather Snuffler Allan
Kate Lawrence