Norway to continue experiments on whales despite protests


A research team intends to capture a dozen juvenile minke whales off the Norwegian coast and use sensors placed on their skin to measure their brain’s responses to sound.

The research team conducting the experiment says it is designed to understand what types of human-made sea noise affect whales, as human-made sound can affect an animal’s hearing and behavior and cause stress. can become.

“We have essentially no knowledge of their hearing, and it’s important for noise regulators to know what kind of noise can affect them,” Petter Kwadsheim, chief scientist at the Norwegian Defense Research Establishment (FFI), told CNN. ” He said the team would not test the animals’ noise tolerance, or how they behaviorally respond to sound.

“We expose them to the lowest sound possible to find their hearing range, using electrophysiological methods developed for use on newborns,” said Quadsheim, co-principal investigator of the experiment. He said the experiment is on.

but 50 international scientists and veterinarians have Called The Norwegian prime minister called for the cancellation of the trial, writing in an open letter that the capture and length of the experiment “have significant potential to cause injury and stress, which could potentially result Capturing myopathy.” Capture myopathy is a non-contagious condition in wild and domestic animals in which muscle damage is caused by excessive exertion, conflict or stress and can be fatal.

UK-based organization Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC) “Little is known about the finest wild whales and dolphins, and therefore it is rarely attempted. Available data indicate a fainting of baleen whales in the wild.” could be life threatening.” who led the letter, said in a separate statement.

“We already know a lot from observational studies about how high-amplitude, man-made noise affects baleen whales, so the proposed research is not only dangerous and unethical, but it is also redundant,” he said.

Norway’s Food Safety Authority, which approved the test, accepted That experiment, which involves capturing whales, keeping them in an enclosure for 3-4 days, and tagging them, “involves moderate distress and discomfort for up to six hours.”

Ole Aamodt, head of the veterinary department at the Norwegian Food Safety Authority, said the experiment was considered to be of “moderate” severity.

“Procedures on animals that result in the animal being likely to experience short-term moderate pain, suffering or distress, or long-lasting mild pain, suffering or distress, as well as procedures that may cause moderate loss of wellness. The general condition or general condition of the animals is classified as moderately severe,” Amod said.

“There is nothing to indicate that this experiment should be considered serious,” he said.

“We assess that the purpose of the experiment is well described and justified, and this justifies the burden on the animals,” he said.

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But in a statement of concern, the 50 international scientists who signed the letter said it was an “understatement”, adding: “The process causes significant stress to the whales leading to panic, which leads to the loss of both whales and humans.” A dangerous situation arises for him.”

Signed by over 64,000 people petition Asked to stop the experiment.

“We’ve been through a very thorough planning and permitting process to minimize the risk,” Quadsheim told CNN.

He said, “We expect the animals to experience some level of stress, but we have veterinarians monitoring their health and well-being throughout the process. If the animals are in danger or distress they will be released ”

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