Sea Shepherd ship to set sail from Wellington

TIM DONOGHUE
Last updated 17:02 22/02/2012
Japanese whaling fleet vessel Yushin Maru No. 3 sprays water cannons at Sea Shepherd activists in a dinghy boat during a clashes in the Southern Ocean in 2011.
Reuters
WHALING PROTEST: Japanese whaling fleet vessel Yushin Maru No. 3 sprays water cannons at Sea Shepherd activists in a dinghy boat during a clashes in the Southern Ocean in 2011.

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The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's vessel Bob Barker will head back down to the Southern Ocean when it sails out of Wellington tonight to begin another anti-whaling campaign.

It has been berthed at Wellington's Taranaki Street wharf for the past week while refuelling and taking on supplies before sailing south to once again to protest against the actions of the Japanese whaling fleet.

Phil Peterson, Bob Barker crewman, said the plan was once again to team up with sister-ship the Steve Irwin.

"The weather's bad and we don't think there is any whaling going on down there right now."

It was good to get back to Wellington after 63 days at sea for a shower and a rest.

Mr Peterson anticipated it would take the Bob Barker about six days on the 3000km (approx) voyage south before once again rendezvousing with the Steve Irwin.

"Wellington was the closest port for us to refuel. That's why we came here rather than Hobart," Mr Peterson said.

He anticipated the Japanese would end whaling for the season by the end of March.

Current planning was for the two ships, Bob Barker and Steve Irwin, to return to Australian ports once the Japanese ended their whale hunt.

The Japanese have had three harpoon vessels and a factory ship Nisshin Maru in the Southern Ocean this whale hunting season.

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