One of the ships seen in Animal Planet’s show “Whale Wars” docked in U.S. mainland waters for the first time on Friday to raise awareness on the slaughter of sea creatures worldwide.
The boat, named the Brigitte Bardot and owned by Sea Shepherd, a nonprofit devoted to marine wildlife conservation, will be in Marina del Rey until Nov. 11 giving public tours. For the last three months, the ship has navigated the Southern Pacific Ocean trying to stop the practice of shark-finning, whereby hunters slice off fins while the rest of the shark is discarded. Lacking fins, the shark dies quickly at the mercy of other predators or by suffocating.
“If you can imagine somebody holding you down and chopping off your legs, that’s what these sharks are going through,” said Susan Hartland, Sea Shepherd administrative director.
The Brigitte Bardot will be part of a fleet of four ships and one helicopter that will head to the Antarctic Ocean later this month to defend whales from Japanese whaling ships.
To date, the organization, founded by activist Paul Watson, has saved the lives of about 3,600 whales, according to its website.
To support Sea Shepherd’s goals, actress and model Pamela Anderson, who is also a fervent advocate and supporter of animal rights causes, was in Marina del Rey on Friday to support the nonprofit’s cause.
“We have to protect the earth for our kids and their kids, and so get involved, in any way you can,” Anderson said.
In the last year, Anderson, along with PETA representatives and other activists, petitioned Russia to join the U.S., the European Union and Mexico in banning the import of all harp-seal products from Canada. She met with Russian Deputy Trade Representative Timofey S. Borodin in October to support the country’s ban.
The Brigitte Bardot will head to the Antarctic Ocean for its third season later this month, hoping to stop all whale kills this year.
“It’s about being stealthy,” said Simon Anger, Brigitte Bardot’s ship manager.
The boat’s sleek design allow it to creep up on whale-hunters as it is often undetected by radar.
The Brigitte Bardot will be in Marina del Rey from Friday until Nov. 11 for public tours. For a viewing schedule, click here.