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Navy Military Exercises Expected To Kill Hundreds Of Whales And Dolphins: VIDEO

Sea Life

The United States Navy trains and tests their sailors in the waters off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, Hawaii, and in the Gulf of Mexico. Such training, unfortunately, has an impact on the marine environment where it takes place. On August 30th the U.S. Navy published reports detailing the environmental impact their training is expected to have: by their own count, the Navy anticipates that their activities from 2014 through 2019 will kill over 340 dolphins and whales, most from bombs, but some from the Navy's criticized use of active sonar.

The Navy insists that the skills used against contemporary quiet submarines are perishible, cannot be simulated, and of course crucial for national security. However, researchers have discovered a connection between sonar use and whale strandings, and mid-frequency sonar use has been known to cause hearing damage to marine mammals, which can be fatal for animals who use echolocation to navigate and find food.

Southern California office of the Natural Resources Defense Council attorney Giulia Good Stefani says that they understand the Navy's need for training, just that, "We simply have asked the Navy to try to reduce the impact it's having on marine mammal populations."

Rear Admiral Kevin R. Slates discusses the training AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. One of things I love about Towleroad is that we got a peak into the inner workings of Andy's brain. Mostly it's hard news delivered with an expected POV that is nevertheless moderate in its tone. That, combined with a dash of astronomy, a smidge of hunk-gazing, and some occasional cotton candy fluff, all combined to produce an informative and topical website that either informs or makes me smile or gawk.

    The above post is a prime example of a site losing its way. This has nothing to do with gay issues, and it's not celebratory of science or anything else in this world. It's truly awful that Navy training exercises kill marine mammals, but it's not what I come to Towleroad for. This post is preachy and off-topic, and I just frankly don't appreciate it. Sorry, Christian.

    Posted by: ColinATL | Sep 5, 2013 9:42:23 AM

  2. hmm...that commment is preachy and off-topic, so i guess you guys are even.

    Posted by: sftc | Sep 5, 2013 10:16:17 AM

  3. Actually, I look forward to seeing these stories on Towleroad. "Off-Topic" and "Preachy" are in the eye of the beholder, I suppose.

    Posted by: GregInDuluth | Sep 5, 2013 10:26:01 AM

  4. It's Andy's blog. He doesn't come to your house and force you to read it.

    If I see a caption on a story that doesn't interest me, I, uh... don't read it. Shocking, I know.

    Posted by: Grant | Sep 5, 2013 10:28:47 AM

  5. If the exercises have to be done they have to be done. Sheesh. Go huh a tree.

    Posted by: MIke | Sep 5, 2013 10:33:47 AM

  6. yeah whales and dolphins, go eff yourselves, the us military's war games are more important than your sorry arses. USA! USA!

    Posted by: gomez | Sep 5, 2013 11:38:19 AM

  7. I love that Towleroad covers a wide range of news topics, from the frivolous to the serious, from gay-specific to simply human (and animal) issues. As others have said, it's Andy's blog and he and his staff can post what they want. We can either read it or not read it. That's all there is to it.

    After all the hard work that has been to done to try to save and replenish the whale population after the decimation we humans have inflicted on them, this is heartbreaking news. There are currently only around 400 (yes, not thousands, only 400) North Atlantic right whales alive today. They go to Florida for breeding, so this is potentially devastating to their population.

    Whales are magnificent, fascinating creatures. I don't believe the Navy can't find a way to do the testing that kills fewer whales and doesn't jeopardize national security.

    As for the "go hug a tree" attitude (@mike), this is the kind of mentality that is destroying our planet right before our eyes. Go out in a boat and see these beautiful animals up close, see a female humpback whale and her calf, or watch a school of dolphins and how they interact with each other, and then see if "go hug a tree" is the appropriate response.

    Posted by: Robert | Sep 5, 2013 12:26:04 PM

  8. I object to killing whales for sport. Given that it's NOT essential that ANY human kill a whale for food, then all food killing is sport.

    This, however, is incidental killing some of which is simply a fact of life. It's the difference between a Manatee being killed by a fisherman and one being killed by an ocean liner. The fisherman can look out for them, the ocean liner just can't.

    So since there are a bunch of idiots out there who defend Eskimos and Japanese killing whales for sport, then why not take the Eskimos and Japanese on the naval exercise and let them feast on any whales which are accidentally killed?

    Posted by: Hagatha | Sep 5, 2013 12:34:49 PM

  9. @ Hagatha, I find your comment truly offensive. Incidental killing, a fact of life… interesting concept, I guess human kind's "necessities", like continuing to develop and wage wars to stimulate the economy, trump the survival of helpless creatures who can't control their circumstances. Not really fair play, is it? Who exactly has the right to live a full life, or not, and why should humans be the ones to decide? @Robert, I'm right there with you.

    Posted by: tinkerbelle | Sep 5, 2013 1:22:50 PM

  10. Hagatha, I hope you're reincarnated as a slaughter cow. With your diseased mentality. Human war mongering should not come before precious life- no matter what form.

    Posted by: James | Sep 5, 2013 4:48:45 PM

  11. Folks,it's still Andy's blog and he can do whatever the hell he wants. If you don't appreciate it there are lots of places to drag your behind to.

    Posted by: greenfuzz | Sep 5, 2013 8:00:33 PM

  12. The U.S. Navy is a huge organization and it has to engage in relevant training, for obvious reasons. Also, because of legal [domestic and international], treaties, budgetary matters, etc., it has a limited number of locales, some of which may seem odd to the average person, but that's the way it is. I like whales, fish, sea life, just as much as anyone else. I wonder how things have changed over the years as technology [just technology, we won't even talk about politics, economic, etc.,] has affected this issue and what the future holds?

    Posted by: ratbastard | Sep 6, 2013 6:36:14 AM

  13. This post had ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with you, COLINATL... Get over yourself and carry on to the next post! Comments like yours are a prime example of how self absorbed some folks can be and how that attitude is what's f*cking up our planet. I agree that twlrd is going down the drain namely for allowing this crap to be posted!

    Posted by: SHABAKA | Sep 6, 2013 12:54:41 PM

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