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Zamami, Naha excited about whale return

Date Posted: 2009-01-23

The annual migration of the whales to the Kerama Archipelago is under way, and whale watching trips, exhibitions and concerts are part of the festivities.

The whales began their treks to the Okinawa region late last month, and will continue hanging around the area until late March. Zamami and Tokashiki Villages in the Kerama Islands have been deeply involved in studying whales over the past four years, and are participating in observations this year under the theme ‘The ocean which is tender to whales and humans.’

Whale watching tours are organized at various marinas across Okinawa, giving citizens a chance close up to observe the mammoth animals. At Tomari Port, an exhibit related to whales is set up in the Tomarine Building, and a second is a picture exhibition at Naha International Airport’s 2nd floor Welcome Hall.

Zamami Village residents have erected a whale monument covered with flowers at the local harbor. A photo competition is under way until March 19th, with shutterbugs invited to take pictures of whales. Winners will be announced March 28th. Zamami Village, which considers itself the whales’ home town, will hold a whale forum on February 21st, including a panel discussion at the Zamami Village Multipurpose Center.

Zamami Village will bid farewell to the whales, and the whale watching, with a concert at the Zamami Village Harbor on March 28th.

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