Although whales are the largest Mammals on the planet, they are among the most threatened. Whaling operations killed off several whale species and almost killed off several more. The ban on whaling has helped whale numbers to slowly but steadily increase over the past few years.
Dispite this ban two countries still practice whaling today, namely Norway and Japan. Japan is the most active with their controversial research program that provides shale meat to shops and restaurants. Japanese whaling (catching about 400 whales a year) focuses mainly on Minke whales which they claim are not in danger.