TAIJI, Japan––Notorious as scene of the dolphin massacres shown by the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove, Taiji “has begun researching a plan to section off part of a cove and turn it into a place where people can swim in the water and kayak alongside small whales and dolphins,” Agence France-Presse reported in October 2013, confirming rumors circulating since March 2012.
“We already use dolphins and small whales as a source of tourism in the cove where dolphin-hunting takes place,” city official Masaki Wada told AFP. “But we plan to do it on a larger scale. This is part of Taiji’s long-term plan of making the whole town a park, where you can enjoy watching marine mammals while tasting various marine products, including whale and dolphin meat.”
Wade said the proposed swim-with-dolphins attraction would be at Moriura Bay, separate from Hatakejiri Bay, where dolphins are killed and captured for sale to marine parks, as detailed in The Cove.
Taiji killed or captured 1,277 dolphins in 2012-2013, and has a quota of 2,026 for 2013-2014.